The Mothers and Marginalised Advocacy Centre (MAMA Centre), has accused relevant government authorities and agencies of pretentious interventions over civil cases affecting women who were either sexually abused or molested.
In a press statement delivered by the
Executive Director, MAMA Centre, Barrister Ola Onyegbula, the group made this known as it joined the rest of the world to commemorates the International Day to End Violence against Women.
The Executive Director called for stringent and holistic policy actions to address recurring violence and abuses against women in both public and private spheres.
Onyegbula added that MANA is seriously bothered by the incessant cases of women being subjected to rape, undignified torture, mental and physical abuses in all ramifications including armed forces with deliberate silence or pretentious intervention by relevant authorities.
He said: “We are not unaware that the overbearing and disproportionate responses by Nigerian security forces personnel towards civil cases involving women are among the ruthless in the world for their deliberate use of excessive force and extra- judicial killing, verbal attacks and psychological intimidation reportedly mounted on women at both formal and informal sectors.
“We recall the recent cases of ill-treatment and abuses meted out to over 100 innocent women who were arrested, assaulted and sexually harassed in Abuja during an unlawfully raid carried out at night clubs and hotels in Abuja metropolis by operatives of the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA), Joint Task Team, which comprised of the Department of Development Control, Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) and the Social Development Secretariat (SDS).
“While women and girls account for 70 percent of global human trafficking victims, according to United Nations report, most victims are trafficked for sexual exploitation, abuses, dehumanization, and are grossly stripped of their dignity.”
He maintained that nearly one third of all of Nigerian women have experienced silent physical violence, which encompasses battery, marital rape and murder, at the hands of their intimate partners, with common belief that a husband is justified in beating his wife for a number of reasons, most of which goes uninvestigated or judicial hammer falling on sexual violators.
“Marriage has been harbouring a platform for continued and unchecked domestic abuse, violence and other social stigma levelled against voiceless women. This include women isolated in private homes as domestic workers, who suffer psychological, physical, and sexual abuse.
“We therefore call for full implementation of Violence Against Persons Prohibition (VAPP) Act, with sincere political will to punish offenders. We sue for total judiciary independence to constructively interpret cases of sexual abuse and impose commensurate sanctions on perpetrators without fear, intimidation or favour.
“We also call for more proactive policy actions for women empowerment to encourage self-reliance and socio-economic self-sustainability of women with holistically-instituted reporting system/mechanism to ease and encourage complaints process and efficiently address reported cases of violence against women at all levels,” he asserted.