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NGO decries spate of violence against women, children


Port Harcourt, Sept. 7, 2015 (NAN) Miss Stephanie Ekpebulu, Founder, Working for Family Stability Initiative (WOFASI), a Port Harcourt based NGO, has decried violence and abuse of women, girls and children in the country.
Ekpebulu stated this at the inaugural meeting of the organisation in Port Harcourt on Monday.
Ekpebulu, a lawyer, described the vice as a threat to human existence, noting that it can prevent victims and even perpetrators from achieving their lives’ goal if not tackled.
She said the NGO had investigated the causes and effects of violence and abuse on the victims, perpetrators and society, and hinted that her organisation would contribute in tackling it.
According to her, the NGO would embark on education and sensitisation campaign in schools, communities and churches, and pointed out that prevention was better than punishment.
Ekpebulu noted that punishing armed robbers, murder convicts with death or life jail, among others, had not stopped robbery and murder in the country.
She explained that while the relations of the victims would want the perpetrators punished, the punishment would not bring back the victim in the case of death.
“WOFASI has also looked at the positions of the convict and victim and concluded that the convict and victim, pacified by perpetrator’s imprisonment are the same.

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“Sensitisation, education and speaking are better than making laws and punishing offenders have yielded little or no results from various penalties such as life imprisonment for capital offences,’’ she said.
She, however, said the sensitisation campaign would be a difficult task and solicited the support of the public to enable the organisation achieve its goal.
Ekpebulu noted that both the “broken’’ victims of violence, abuse and perpetrators needed stabilisation from the psychological and emotional trauma they suffered.
Mr Michael Gbarale, Chairman of the meeting, urged the NGO to try and tackle harmful traditional widowhood practices in Rivers.
He lamented that widows were compelled to bathe their dead husbands, among other practices. (NAN)

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