Establish special courts for sexual, gender-based violence cases —WARDC

A group of women under the aegis of Women Advocates Research and Documentation Centre (WARDC) have asked the federal government to establish special courts for quick dispensation of justice on sexual and Gender-based violence in the country.

This was just as they also asked the government to declare a state of emergency on violence against women and girls in order to reduce incidences with concrete actions.

They said this would ensure that laws are in compliant with agreed international standards on gender equality and effectively enforced services available to ameliorate the suffering of affected women and girls.

Speaking at the Womanifesto conference in Lagos, the co-convener, WARDC, Dr. Abiola Akiyode-Afolabi noted that special courts are necessary for the quick dispensation of justice on SGBV cases and operation of ‘shelters’ to support women and girls who are at risk or survivors of violence in each state of the federation by 2023.

“The federal government should declare a state of emergency on violence against women and girls and follow through with the concrete actions to reduce incidences.

“Ensure that laws are complied with agreed international standards on gender equality, effectively enforced and services available to ameliorate the suffering of affected women and girls.

“Establish special courts for the quick dispensation of justice on SGBV cases and operate ‘shelters’ to support women and girls who are at risk or survivors of violence in each state of the Federation by 2023 as well as establish new and support already established SARCs (Sexual Assault Response Centres) across Nigeria.” She stated.

Dr. Abiola disclosed that there is a limited number of women holding senior positions in government boards, parastatals and other managerial/corporate positions.

She explained that there is limited number of women in critical sectors which contribute about 74% of the GDP of the economy including energy, infrastructure, scientific, technical, finance and information technology.

The co-convener further explained that women are conspicuously missing in critical positions the ensuing absence of women’s perspectives in decision making and long-term strategic plans will only perpetuate Nigeria’s dysfunctional policy making processes with low public impact.

“We also note with growing concern, the limited number of women holding senior positions in government parastatals and other managerial/corporate positions.

“More specifically, there is limited number of women in critical sectors which contribute about 74% of the GDP of the economy including energy, infrastructure, scientific, technical, finance and information technology.

“While women are conspicuously missing in critical positions the ensuing absence of women’s perspectives in decision making and long-term strategic plans will only perpetuate Nigeria’s dysfunctional policy making processes with low public impact.” Abiola said.

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