By Aderogba George
The United Nations International Children Emergency Fund (UNICEF) on Wednesday in Uyo reaffirmed its commitment to continue to support the Federal Government.
Mr Ibrahim Sesay, the UNICEF Child Protection Officer, gave the assurance on the 3rd day of the 21st Regular National Council Meeting on Women Affairs.
The theme of the women council meeting is “Gender equality: A panacea for enduring security and sustainable economic recovery in the post COVID-19 era”.
Sesay said that UNICEF would support the federal government through the Ministry of Women Affairs by providing support in the area of the Child Right Act before the next council meeting.
He said that the agency would go further in supporting the ministry in deliverable services particularly on violence against the children.
“The economic value of violence against girls and women in Nigeria is too worrisome, we will support the Federal Government in this area,” Sesay said.
Dr Omolaso Omosehin, the Head, United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), disclosed that a lot was needed to be done by Nigeria in the area of Obstetric Fistula, an issue which occurred as a result of prolong child birth.
He disclosed that UNFPA have a robust Fistula project in Nigeria, saying that government support was needed in this area to reduce the rate of casualty of women who died from this challenge.
“Nigeria accounts for 40 per cent of Fistula cases around the World, UNFPA is undertaken up to 3,000 repair cases per year in Nigeria.
“The main causes of Obstetric Fistula is prolonged labour due to early marriage by underage girls, sexual violence, harmful traditional practice and unskilled birth attendance.
“UNFPA have a total of 12,560 cases to support, out of this figure 5,000 cases have been successfully repaired and established economically,” he said.
He enumerated the challenges faced in reducing Fistula cases to include poor political will, lack of national data base and weak health systems.
Mrs Omotayo Thomas, the President of Widows and Support Society of Africa, called for more chances for women to showcase their talents, adding that women must be valued and must not be treated like animals.
“We need to build a structure that can help the women to recover, we need to build public support for women and recovery policies in order to help women to be safe.
“We must be trained in different skill acquisition,” Thomas pleaded.
Brig.-Gen. Christiana Thomas, the Gender Adviser to the Chief of Defence Staff, stated that the Army was already observing gender equality, adding that there are a lot of women in the armed forces. (NAN) (www.nannews.ng)