The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), is set to advocate for the ratification of Maputo Protocol to help provide for a laudable protection of women and girls through dialogue and creation of awareness on the protocol.
Plateau State Coordinator of NHRC, Mrs. Veronica Abe, disclosed this Monday while delivering a speech on behalf of the Executive Secretary, National Human Rights Commission, Chief (Dr) Tony Ojukwu, OFR, SAN, at a rally on the occasion marking the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Based Violence in Jos, the Plateau State capital.
While dwelling on the theme for this year’s activism; “Invest To Prevent Violence Against Women And Girls”, the Executive Secretary said the theme was focusing on the importance of financing different prevention strategies to end violence against women and girls.
He said, “it is an unequivocal truth that a society that invests in the well being, progress and independence of women, reaps immeasurable benefits. This year’s theme urges us to reflect deeply on the various prevention strategies needed to halt violence at its roots. It prompts us to channel our efforts into initiatives that safeguard the rights and dignity of every woman and girl.
“The Commission in fulfilling its human rights mandate, especially of women and girls, organised a national dialogue to create awareness on the Maputo Protocol. And as we celebrate this year’s 16 days of Activism, the Commission calls for the ratification of Maputo Protocol (which has very laudable provisions for protection of the rights of women)”, Ojukwu disclosed.
He therefore commended the concerted efforts of the Nigerian Armed Forces to rescue women and girls who were in captivity in the hands of insurgents and bandits and called for the enactment of the Gender Equality Bill by the National Assembly and VAPP by State Houses of Assemblies, respectively.
The NHRC ES, however, disclosed that currently the Commission was undergoing a Special Investigative Panel for allegations of mass abortion and SGBV in the North East counter insurgency operations and it was reiterating its unwavering commitment to accelerate the reconvening of the Special Panel on SGBV.
Meanwhile, the Plateau State First Lady, Her Excellency, Helen Mutfwang, represented by the State Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Development, Hon. Caroline Plangnan Dafur, said the government acknowledges the urgency of taking action and protecting the rights and well-being of our women and girls by the National Human Rights Commission in the state.
“I want to express my total commitment to eradicating violence against women and girls in our beloved state. Violence against women and girls is a grave violation of their fundamental human rights. I am fully committed to ensuring the active implementation of the VIOLENCE AGAINST PERSON PROHIBITION (VAPP) law to safeguard women and girls from violence”, the First lady assured.
There were goodwill messages from the Director General of Gender and Equal Opportunity Commission, Barr. Mrs. Olivia Dazem; NBA Chairman, Izang Aware; FIDA Chairperson, Barr. Obioma Ngozi Achilefu; Vivian E. Abara, of the Peace Advancement Action Against Violence And Rape Foundation (PAAAVARF), State NUJ Chairman, Ayuku Pwaspo; State NAWOJ Chairperson, Nene Dung; Women For Women and a host of CSOs present.