By Amen Gajira
The Salama Sexual Assaults Referral Centre Kafanchan, Kaduna State, has decried what it termed “increased rate of violence against women in the area.”
The Centre Manager, Mrs Grace Yohanna-Abbin, expressed concern over the increase during a peaceful walk in Kafanchan as part of activities to mark this year’s 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence (GBV)
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the walk was held in collaboration with the Centre for Integrated Health Programmes.
NAN also reports that the 16 Days of Activism is an annual international campaign that runs from Nov. 25, which is the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women until Dec. 10, which is Human Rights Day.
The global initiative is aimed at eliminating GBV by raising awareness about the devastating impact of violence on women and children, and the social fabric of the society.
The manager said violence against women remained an obstacle to achieving equality and fulfillment of women and girls’ rights.
According to her, the centre recorded 769 cases of sexual assault from Jan. 1 to Nov. 30, mostly against women.
She added that “of the 769 cases we recorded, 674 were against women and 95 against men.”
She explained that while GBV could also happen to men and boys, women and girls were mostly at the receiving end of it.
“However, we are asking everyone to invest time and resources to prevent violence against women and girls.
“Violence can be from anyone and at any time, so, we should work together to ensure that we end violence against women and children.”
She encouraged victims to overlook the issue of stigma and report to the centre within 72 hours of abuse to enable medical experts to examine them so as to secure the conviction of offenders.
While commending the people of Kafanchan for their efforts to break the culture of silence with regards to GBV, she tasked stakeholders to do more in preventing violence against women and children.
The centre is one of four in the state where victims of rape and other GBV cases receive free counselling, medical and optional legal interventions. (NAN)
Edited by Hadiza Mohammed-Aliyu