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UNESCO condemns harmful practice against women in Ebonyi

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UNESCO

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO), the EU-UN lead agency for spotlight initiative programme, at the weekend, kicked against harmful practice against women in Ebonyi State.

It said that they had mapped out meaningful approaches to address the menace in the state.

Spotlight Initiative Project Manager for UNESCO in Ebonyi State, Dr. Stephen Onyekwelu, made this known in Abakaliki during stakeholders’ and students’ movie review on gender-based violence, noting that Spotlight is working to address rape, widowhood, inheritance and other harmful practices in Ebonyi State.

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He said that social and human science department of the UNESCO had produced a movie aimed at sensitising the populace on the need to speak out against rape.

Onyekwelu, who said that the spotlight programme had been implemented in four local councils in the state, said: “Since October 2019, we have been able to implement several projects in Ebonyi State.

“In 2020, the number was increased to add Onicha and Ohaozara local councils. So, we have four implementation local councils in Ebonyi State and which is the only state we are implementing in four local councils.

“We also have no formal education and life skill we are providing in this state. Our target here is to reach out to thousands of women and girls, providing them with literacy and life skills to empower them to be able to speak up on issues of gender-based violence and know their rights.

“So far, UNESCO has reached at least 26,000 women and girls, including boys and men as we speak.

“Today, we are here for the video. We will watch it, make input and validate it. The whole essence of the video is to sensitise people.

“It is for us to see some of the ills we see in the society in which the spotlight is fighting.”

He, therefore, urged establishment of a spotlight director in Ebonyi State to know the implementation agencies and what they have done in the state.

He said that the state must ensure that the money released for the implementation agencies is properly utilised, saying: “We need to ensure that everything we do in the state is highly co-ordinated.”

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