From Jude Chinedu, Enugu
Boys Quarters Africa, a nonprofit, has entered into an understanding with Enugu State Government to stamp out gender-based violence and other vices in the state.
The initiative which is supported by Connected Development (CODE) and OXFAM-Voice is codenamed Project SABI and seeks to sensitise men and boys on how their attitude will foster an equal and safe society, especially for women and girls.
Speaking while on a courtesy call to the State Commissioner for Gender Affairs and Social Development, Peace Nnaji, the founder of the NGO, Solomon Ayodele, said that the programme will include town hall meetings at motor parks and markets across the state where men and boys will be sensitised.
‘Over the years, women have been leading the struggle against physical and sexual violence, across the different spectrum and focal areas. However, It is essential that more men get involved in this work to end the violence, especially because so much of this physical and sexual violence is done by men. Connected Development and Boys Quarters Africa have launched an initiative called Project SABI,’ he said.
Ayodele further noted that in the last three years, the organisation have actively mobilised and engaged over 6,000 Men/Boys across Africa as allies in the fight towards ending all forms of violence against women and girls, through her different flagship project.
‘We would be hosting MotorParks Town Halls with Transport Union Members, Market place Town Halls with Women, Support Group for women to learn and share, and the establishment of Boys against Sexual & Gender-Based Violence Boys Club across 30 Schools in the Project States,’ Ayodele said.
In her response, the commissioner, represented by a Permanent Secretary in the ministry, Dr Uzoamaka Uzoechina, thanked the group for the initiative which she said was coming at a time when there was a significant rise in cases of gender-based violence in the state and across the federation.
She said that the state government was willing to provide all the needed assistance to ensure that the project succeeds in the state.