The Federation of Muslim Women’s Association in Nigeria (FOMWAN) and other women Non-governmental organizations have sought the support of traditional leaders on empowerment and ending all forms of violence against women and girls.
The National Amira, FOMWAN, Dr Halima Jibril, stated this when members of the association, Women Wing of Christian Association of Nigeria (WOWICAN), Nigeria Girls Guide, paid a courtesy visit to the Gomo of Kuje on Thursday.
According to Jibril, the visit was part of the Risk Communication and Community Engagement Project (RCCE) supported by UN Women, Federal Ministry of Women Affairs, WOWICAN, Nigeria Girls Guide to promote the health and well-being of the community, and improve women’s leadership skills and economy.
She explained that the project would empower 10,000 women in 10 states, comprising Akwa Ibom, Bauchi, Bayelsa, Borno, Delta, Edo, Gombe, Sokoto, Lagos and the FCT over a period of six months.
The Amira noted that the project was in response to the ravages of Covid-19, which had led to several deaths, unemployment and increase in violence against women and girls.
” Covid-19 has given birth to another pandemic, gender based violence targeted at women and girls.
“This has led to killings of women and girls, rape and other forms of sexual abuse. Domestic violence is also on the increase, thereby putting women and girls at risk,” she said.
Jibril, therefore, appealed to community leaders to ensure that members of traditional institutions adopt the Covid-19 guidelines, promote education, support women empowerment, while assuring that the strategies were to eliminate all forms of GBV, support the survivors and ensure prosecution of perpetrators according to the law.
She appealed to the traditional rulers to explore structures and culture that protect women and girls against GBV, as well as re-examine practices that does not promote the wellbeing and dignity of women.
Mrs Florence Olaleye, PRO, FCT branch, Women Wing of Christian Association of Nigeria (WOWICAN) stressed the need for the girl-child to be empowered, to enable her know her rights and fight against any form of violence.
“We don’t want women to be enslaved, we want to see a good representation of women in political positions because wherever women lead you will see progress and peace,” she said.
Also, Mrs Ilesanmi Obafunso, FCT Commissioner, Nigerian Girl Guides Association, said implementing the programme would reduce the challenges of women and improve their economic status.
Obafunso reiterated the commitment of her organization towards motivating and raising the “girl child” to be a responsible adult citizen in the society.
Responding, the Gomo of Kuje, Alhaji Haruna Jibrin, assured them of the council’s support towards promoting education and women empowerment in the community.
NAN reports that various women and youths’ associations, wives of traditional rulers in the FCT and some council members were present at the advocacy meeting. (NAN)