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Combating SGBV: FG, UN agencies, Stakeholders Advised to Step Up Funding

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Combating SGBV: FG, UN agencies, Stakeholders Advised to Step Up Funding

By: Michael Mike

The Federal Government, United Nations and all relevant stakeholders have been advised to step up fundings and investment in the ongoing battle against Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV) in order to consign the malady to history.

A Non-Governmental Organisation, Women Aspire Empowerment Initiative (WAEI) gave this advice at the weekend in Abuja as part of it’s activities to commemorate the 2023, 16 days activism.

Making the appeal at a summit set to establishing grassroot women advocacy and activism movement to stop Violence Against Women and Girls in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), the Founder WAEI, Dr. Bibiana Okereafor stressed the need to address the socio-economic demands of survivors of SGBV, by empowering women and girls to reduce the inequality that exists in the society, and also continue to advocate for the reduction of gender based violence through the implementation of laws and policies to stop Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWGs).

Okereafor said: “Practical evidence shows that strong and independent women movements are the most important force to drive policy change in GBV. Unfortunately, such women entities and movements that are key drivers of mobilization/recruitment are not being funded.

“Increasing funding sources that are long term in nature to finance Women-focused rights organisations is key to funding solutions and response to VAWGs in Nigeria.”

She added that: “We are calling on the federal government through the office of the Women Affairs Minister, Barrister Uju Kennedy to push for the inclusion of Funding Organisations that are involved in the fight to prevent VAWG, as well as the rehabilitation of existing victims/survivors and reduce incidents of future violence.

“We also call on Federal Government organizations, states, international bodies, UN Women & Corporate organizations, high net-worth individuals within and outside Nigeria to give financial support to stop continued VAWG in Nigeria.

Okereafor further questioned the intentionality of government about ending VAWG, noting that the poor distribution of amount allocated to the nation through international funding as well as the distribution of generated funds among organisation’s working to stop Violence Against Women and Girls.

She also called for the speedy legislation of the 5 Gender Based Bills thrown out by the 9th Assembly, and the creation of a one stop centre for the victims of sexual assault, domestic violence, medical, psychosocial and counselling for female survivors of Sexual Assault.

Delivering his keynote Address, Commissioner of the National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons (NCFRMI) Tijani Ahmed noted that violence against women and girls is a pressing global issue that requires collective attention and action, lamenting that human lost due to violence against women and girls is incalculable and an unfortunate reality that continues to persist.

He however commended the call for establishment of a grassroots women’s advocacy and activism movement stating that “it is an essential step. Such a movement aims to empower women and girls, provide them with a platform to raise their voices and promote gender equality in all aspects of life. By mobilizing at the grassroots level, we can ensure that the voices of marginalized women and girls and their specific needs are addressed.

Ahmed, who was represented by an Assistant Director in the Commission, Comfort Sanni said: “To establish a successful grassroots movement, we need to focus on key areas, awareness and education: This movement should start by raising awareness about violence against women and girls.

“We need to educate communities, both rural and urban, about the various forms of violence and their detrimental effects on individuals and society as a whole. By dispelling and challenging stereotypes, we can change attitudes and foster a culture of respect and gender equality

“In the FCT, we must take a firm stand against such acts of violence and work towards creating a safer and more inclusive society for everyone. This is the bane of this year’s commemoration,” he said.

Also, Women and Children’s rights activist and Public Analyst, Nana Kazaure reiterated that violence meted to women have grave consequences on their well being, stating that it is a greater cause of ill health than traffic accidents and malaria combined.

Kazaure also stated that “as troubling as these incidents are, they do not evoke in Nigerians, the needed empathy to prompt them to action. Instead, a pervasive culture of silence pervades the land as everyone stuck in our traditional “siddon look” or “waka pass mode re-in forced by our see no evil, hear no evil mindset.

“Traditional attitudes of hostility and discrimination against women underpinned by mindless stereotyping, have been exacerbated by violence perpetrated by corporate non-state actors and individuals across all the geopolitical zones of the country with hundreds of thousands of women and their children uprooted from their homes and handed off to Internally Displaced Persons camps where the majority of them become victims of rape of camp officials in order to obtain favour.”

Combating SGBV: FG, UN agencies, Stakeholders Advised to Step Up Funding

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Nigeria, UAE to Strengthen Partnership and Collaboration

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Nigeria, UAE to Strengthen Partnership and Collaboration

By: Michael Mike

Plans are underway to further strengthen areas of partnership and collaboration between Nigeria and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

This way revealed during the visit of the Chairman/CEO, Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NiDCOM), Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa to the Embassy of UAE in Abuja following the removal of the visa ban by placed on Nigeria by the Arab country.

Dabiri-Erewa who was received by the UAE Ambassador to Nigeria, Salem Saeed Al-Shamsi, stated that NiDCOM intends to engage and sensitize Nigerians in the UAE to be good ambassadors of their country of stay and country of origin, to excel in whatever they are doing and never to forget home.

She added further “this initiative aims to foster better understanding and compliance with local regulations”, while She disclosing that 190 Nigerians were repatriated to Nigeria, with an additional 250 expected to return soon.

She said the actions of individuals in a host country can greatly impact the overall image of their home country, noting that the role of Western media imperialism in perpetuating negative stereotypes about Nigerians.

The UAE Envoy on his part, explained that the visa ban on Nigeria has been officially lifted.

He confirmed that the Visa on Arrival policy has been canceled for all countries, but assured that the new procedures are designed to facilitate tourism and ensure travelers’ safe return.

The Ambassador expressed his commitment to providing the best possible services for Nigerians, with the support of the determined Nigerian government.

He also acknowledged the UAE’s role in safely repatriating 96 Nigerians at no cost.

Marking his one-year anniversary as the UAE Ambassador to Nigeria, Al-Shamsi shared his positive impressions of Nigeria, describing it as a beautiful country with warm-hearted people who share similar cultural, religious, Android ethnic backgrounds with the UAE.

He expressed his eagerness to continue collaborating with NiDCOM to strengthen ties between the two countries.

Nigeria, UAE to Strengthen Partnership and Collaboration

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UK Government Hosts Stakeholder Meeting on Serious and Organised Crime

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UK Government Hosts Stakeholder Meeting on Serious and Organised Crime

By: Michael Mike

The United Kingdom Government has hosted a multi-stakeholder meeting in Abuja to discuss how its Serious & Organised Crime (SOC) Prevent Programme is making significant strides in deterring vulnerable young people from joining Organised Crime Groups in Nigeria.

Launched as a three-year pilot in December 2021, the programme is designed to disrupt Nigerian Organised Crime Groups by redirecting at-risk youth towards positive alternatives in Bayelsa, Edo, Zamfara and Lagos states.

In select local governments of these states, the SOC Prevent Programme has established robust structures and delivered various interventions, including Back-to-School Initiatives, Digital Skills Acquisition, Dance and Drama Workshops and Sports Interventions.

Collaborating closely with the Nigeria Police Force, the programme has trained 83 officers in the Prevent methodology, reinforcing the commitment to institutionalise this approach in tackling SOC, and to date, approximately 1,500 beneficiaries across the four states have been diverted from potential involvement in organised crime.

Speaking at the meeting, the Acting British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Gill Lever said: “Serious & Organised Crime is a priority for both Nigeria and the UK, and can take many forms. Ranging from online focussed activities like cybercrime to the physical movement of illicit commodities and people in the form of trafficking.

“Our results in Nigeria have proven that the Prevent methodology works, and it has been successful in diverting young people from choosing a life of crime. I believe that the valuable discussions that took place today will smoothen the way for Prevent to be fully institutionalised in Nigeria.”

The meeting included representatives from the Federal Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Police Affairs, the Nigeria Police Force, Nigeria Security & Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP), National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), INTERPOL, Office for Strategic Preparedness and Resilience (OSPRE), Ministry of Police Affairs, Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), and others.

The Prevent programme is an approach to tackling SOC. Others are Pursue, Protect and Prepare. Prevent methodology looks to prevent or deter people from engaging in SOC by raising awareness of the consequences of SOC and developing techniques to deter people from continuing in criminality.

UK Government Hosts Stakeholder Meeting on Serious and Organised Crime

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Adeola Odutola College 79/84 set celebrate 40 years in grand style with multi-million naira donation of solar street light to school

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Adeola Odutola College 79/84 set celebrate 40 years in grand style with multi-million naira donation of solar street light to school

By: Michael Mike

All is now set for the commissioning of multi-million naira installed solar street light by Adeola Odutola College 1979-1984 set as part of the activities lined up to commemorate the 40 years of leaving the school on Friday July 19.

In a statement, the set said the celebration which had earlier been kicked off with a thanksgiving in the Church on Sunday June 16, to mark the 75 years Founder’s Day, will witness a special Jumat service for the commemoration in the school.

According to Abiodun Balogun, the President of Adeola Odutola College Old Students Association 1979-1984 set, stated that the programme will start with the set participating in the morning assembly with the students from 8 a.m followed by a courtesy call on the Principal and Management of the school.

Thereafter, he said there would be commissioning of the installed solar street light at 11.00 a.m donated by the set to the school.

Balogun said the set will join the Muslim community of the School to observe a Jumat service specially for the set .

Other activities lined up for the anniversary include a get together and gala nite where the old students will reunite and reminiscence of their five years stay in the school.

Balogun added that the set is grateful to God for His benevolence on them as it has produced Professors and academicians, top civil servants, businessmen and women, educationists among several others both at home and in the diaspora.

It will be recalled that the set regrouped in 2014 to mark its 30 years in existence with renovation of some classrooms in the school.

Adeola Odutola College 79/84 set celebrate 40 years in grand style with multi-million naira donation of solar street light to school

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