The Nasrul-lahi-li Fathi Society of Nigeria (NASFAT) has said that women’s self reliance would aid in checking gender violence against women.
NASFAT Ikorodu, Lagos branch, disclosed this on Sunday at the branch’s community sensitisation against gender violence, saying that self reliance empowered women sufficiently to halt the violence meted out to them by their male partners.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos State reports that the sensitisation and road walk that took the group to the rural dwellers; was entitled “End Violence against Women and Girls”.
Advising women at the Owotutu Food market, Mr Ibrahim Olasunkanmi-Saka, NASFAT’s Economic empowerment National Secretary, said that girl-child education and skills acquisition; were essential empowerment tools capable of stopping the menace.
Olasunkami-Saka cited underaged marriage, female gentile mutilation, child hawking, rape, battery by male partners, widowhood maltreatment, among others, as some of the conditions that constituted violence against women.
He charged all females to avail themselves of the organisation’s skills training programmes, alongside their education, to prepare themselves for a better future.
He expressed regret that many of women were unschooled and without skills, hence they suffered many societally induced inhuman treatments.
The NAFAST official, therefore, encouraged women to ensure that their girls acquired either education or skills, saying that such would make them self reliant in future to earn the respect of the society.
“There are things we do that exposes the girl-child to danger, such as street hawking, human trafficking, sending her on an errand at night, leaving her in the care of domestic staffs and others that can take advantage of her and violate her.
“A violated child will continue to be haunted by the trauma of the experience through out her life; such person will see disdain in the society and become unproductive,” he said.
He added that the family, as the micro unit of the society, should ensure that its members, especially girls, were being treated with respect, saying that by so doing, it would impact positively on the larger society.
Ojuolape further said that violence, such as rape, debased the victim; and casts deviance on the perpetrator, who should desist from engaging in such evil acts.
Also speaking, the National Coordinator of the project, Alhaja Marian Karimu, disclosed that the group was working in partnership with other agencies, to bring perpetrators of violence against women to book.
She charged parents to be alert to their obligations and protect their girls from falling prey to lurking dangers, stressing that available data revealed that one in every four girls in Nigeria had experienced sexual violence, while 20 per cent of women and girls were circumcised before the age of five.
“The data also revealed that 19 per cent of girls in Nigeria are married before the age of 15, thereby, exposing them to the risk of sexually transmitted infection, cervical cancer, vesico vaginal fistula (VVF) and maternal mortality.
“Sadly, the data also revealed that violence is rarely an isolated event despite series of crusades against it,” she said.
NAN reports that the project is being supported by the EU, UNICEF, UN Spotlight Initiative (NAN)