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NLC, EU, others seek end to gender-bases violence

By Collins Olayinka, Joke Falaju (Abuja) and Gordi Udeajah (Umuahia)
27 November 2021   |   2:01 am
The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has urged all the 36 states to domesticate the Child Rights Act to successfully tackle gender-based violence in the country.

[FILES] NLC President, Comrade Ayuba Wabba. Photo: TWITTER/NLCHEADQUARTERS

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has urged all the 36 states to domesticate the Child Rights Act to successfully tackle gender-based violence in the country.

At the commemoration of the 2021 16-Day of activism on gender-based violence, President of the NLC, Ayuba Wabba said it was also crucial to engage in robust public enlightenment on the ills of gender-based violence. He stressed that government, non-governmental organisations and religious organisations could help break the silence by naming and shaming perpetrators of gender-based violence and censure such from public leadership.

He stated that the NLC remains committed to a safe environment that is free from discrimination and sexual harassment, including all forms of violence at work for all workers, its employees, affiliates and members.

Wabba expressed sadness that gender-based violence is not restricted to the home but also manifests in the workplace where it actually assumes a hydra headed face, comprising physical abuse, sexual abuse, emotional abuse and psychological torture.

Highlighting the importance of the ratification of the International Labour Organisation Convention 190 on Gender Violence, Wabba said the convention recognises the right of everyone to a world of work that is free from violence and harassment, especially gender-based violence.

“Convention 190 recognises that violence and harassment in the world of work constitutes human tights violation and that violence and harassment is a threat to equal opportunities, and therefore incompatible with decent work,” he said.

The Chairperson of the NLC Women Commission, Salamatu Aliyu rued the non-ratification of Convention 190 by Nigeria. However, she was quick to say that the process for Nigeria’s ratification of convention was almost at the completion level.

The European Union (EU) Ambassador to Nigeria and Economic Community of West Africa (ECOWAS), Samuela Isopi said the EU was working to end sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) in Nigeria.

Isopi stated this, yesterday, in Abuja during live performance of the stage play, Hear Word in commemoration of the days of activism against SGBV, promising to prioritise the creation of a special court for SGBV cases in Nigeria.

“The fight against SGBV remains one of the main priorities of the EU because we believe that this is a menace that affects so many people around the world. SGBV has contributed to so much strife and under development, as it negatively affects the ability to contribute to society and for society to thrive.

“Because of this, the EU has committed significant resources in the fight against this scourge through technical and financial support to front line defenders. In Nigeria, we continue to collaborate with key stakeholders in supporting adequate legislative instruments, targeted healthcare and responsive policies aimed at addressing the issue,” Isopi said.

Wife of the Abia State governor, Dr Nkechi Ikpeazu said that a GBV resource centre has been established in the state. She also said that following her advocacy and leadership in the fight against GBV, desk officers had been appointed in the local councils.

Mrs. Ikpeazu, who spoke yesterday with journalists in Umuahia to mark the commencement of the activism against gender-based violence, said it was an international campaign to challenge violence against women and girls.

According to Ikpeazu, the established GBV resource centre has already published several tools and books for use and has organised several trainings to build capacity for players, actors, advocates and responders.