Adebayo Adenrele

The Justice Development and Peace Initiative, (JDPI) of Catholic Diocese of Ekiti State, in collaboration with other stakeholders held a sensitisation rally across the towns of
the state to sensitise women and children on Gender-based violence, female genital mutilation, child abuse, human trafficking, among others.

During the awareness creation and sensitisation held in Iyin-Ekiti and Igede-Ekiti, the Team, led by the Assistant Director of JDPI, Rev. Sis Agatha Ogbuagu, lectured the women on their rights and the right channels to direct their grievances to if their rights are infringed upon.

According to Magistrate Olaiya Francisca of the International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA), she said the Agency is saddled with the responsibilities of protecting and preserving the rights, interests and wellbeing of women and children.

She noted that If anyone is found guilty of special Assault and sexual abuse, the suspect, be it man or woman is liable to a minimum of 14 years imprisonment or life imprisonment depending on the nature of the offences.

She highlighted the channels to report such occurrences to include Special court, gender court, among others.

“If anyone is found guilty of Special Assault, sexual abuse, and rape, the minimum punishment is 14 years imprisonment or life imprisonment depending on the age and nature of the offences.”

On his part, the Ekit state coordinator of National Human Rights Commission, Biodun Adigun appealed to the residents to speak up and not indulge in the culture of silence.

Adigun, represented by the Commission’s Public Affairs Officer, Bayo Babalola, said the culture of silence does no good but to water the roots of antisocial vices, adding that speaking up to the Government will enable the Commission to bring the perpetrators into book.

Also, the representive of the state National Orientation Agency (NOA), Eleyinmi Olutoyosi funmilayo charged women and parents to shun female genital mutilation (FGM), as it generally affects the wellbeing of the girl child.

She also urged parents to create time and monitor their wards, as it is yardstick of securing brighter future for them.

“Let’s create time for our children and monitor them. Let’s know their association, because of their future.

“There is law in the country and in Ekiti, let’s end FGM, it causes childlessness, it affects them entirely.”

Another representive of FIBA, Kadijat Kolawole Adeniyi, charged the residents to thread carefully before migrating out of the country in order not to be victims of human trafficking.

After the sensitisation, the Team trooped across the streets of Iyin-Ekiti and Igede-Ekiti to also sensitise the women and their male counterparts, with placards that reads “Speak Up, don’t die in silence”, “Stop Female Genital Mutilation now”, “Shun Gender based violence now”, among others.

Earlier, the Team had paid a courtesy visit to Oluyin-in-Coucil for their collaboration to join in the fight against women marginalisation in politics and other spheres of life.

In their reception, Chief Oloro Sunday Taiwo and Chief Osola Akinwunmi promised to work with the Team and join hands in the fight against women magnalisation for the betterment of Ekiti.