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NWTF calls for empowerment,justice for the girl-child

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In lieu of the constant deprivation and lack of necessities for the female gender, The Nigerian Women Trust Fund has charged for empowerment, equality and justice for women and the girl-child.

This call was made by the NWTF Programmes and Communication Officer Salmat Abdulwaheed during an outreach at Buzunkure, Pegi Community in Kuje Area Council of the FCT organise by the She Cares, She Protects Initiative a mentorship programme with support from NWTF on ending Violence against women and girls.

Salmat stated that violence distrupts alot in the community as it not only affects the person it is carried out on but has a multiplying effect on those around and this is detrimental.

According to her “the effect of violence against women and girls is devastating on the persons and the communities in which they live. It ruins lives, breaks families apart and has an impact across the generations.

“Much has been done over recent years to increase protection for women and to punish their attackers. New legislation, extra resources and frontline training have made a real difference.

“But the complexity of the problem and its far-reaching effects demand a broader response,” she stated.

According to her the outreach looks at the role of local community in ending violence against women and girl, providing a full range of enlightenment, care and aid to out of school girls adding, economic empowerment programmes should be made available to women and girls with supported safe spaces.

“We all know that there is an urgent need for more knowledge, information and human rights.When it comes to protecting rights, we call on Governments to review national legislation, practices and customs and abolish those that discriminate against women. Laws, policies and programmes that explicitly prohibit and punish violence must be put into place, in line with international agreements, and Members of Parliament can play a key role.

“Going forward, Women should have access to the police to file a criminal report and receive legal advice and protection orders. The response to violence must be immediate, coordinated and effective so that crimes are punished and justice is secured as together, we can end violence against women and girls,” she reiterated.

One of the residents Hauwa Alhassan an 18year old pregnant primary school graduand said she would have love to be educated but she donot see that happening now and as such has settled for learning a trade but that too is hard to achieve as the resource to make it happen is not available,to her the outreach is like an eye opener and wished she knew the things discussed before now as it will have helped her in decision making.

“I will love to be gainfully employed though I do not have the means to make this happen. I know my life will be far better if I am empowered and this will go a long way in helping the people around me, my family and children in the future,”she said.

Speaking also, Kelechi Nwogu of She cares, She Protects Initiative disclosed that the outreach was towards sensitizing the women and girls on certain practices that culminate into violence against women and girls.

She said “our aim is sensitise women and girls on ways to stand against violence, also to combat issues that lead to dropping out of school among girls. Some are largely due to lack of funds and basic items like sanitary pads.

“This is referred to as period poverty. A situation where a girl is not able to provide a sanitary pad for her monthly flow. This both contributes to her missing school and eventually to seeking certain bits of help which lands her into unwanted pregnancy that makes her eventually a drop out.

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