Home Health WRAPA calls for criminalisation of domestic violence in Nigeria

WRAPA calls for criminalisation of domestic violence in Nigeria


Abuja –  The Women’s Rights Advancement Protection Alternative (WRAPA), an NGO, on Monday called for criminalisation of domestic violence, especially against women in Nigeria.
The Executive Secretary of WRAPA, Mrs Saudatu Madhi, made the call at the opening ceremony of the Organisational Development, Strategic Planning 16th Retreat of the group in Abuja.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the retreat would provide a comprehensive road map for WRAPA in the future and enhance performance, motivation in the coming years.
According to her, criminalising violence against women in the home will ensure that it does not get widespread in the society.
She said that the country required a functional and apt legal framework to fight the cause of women.
“Until people agree that things are going wrong, then the laws are not enough.
“Where family members think that their brother has beaten his wife and to them it is ok because she didn’t cook food on time, then, they don’t see him as a culprit.
“You may know the law but don’t see what your brother has done as offence. So, we need to criminalise violence against women, we need to criminalise all forms of violence.
“From the homes, children pair up socialising violence, they come up in the society and they are recruited into formal violence groups,” she said.
According to her, if the society sees violence in the home as criminality, it should hold people accountable for violence.
The executive secretary said that such action would reduce the tendency of the products of those families coming up to become a menace to the society.
She said that the existing laws in the country would help check violence against women, adding that they provided the framework for respite and recourse.
“If we have the laws then, women, judges, media should know them and lawyers should be empowered to be courageous enough to look into them to find every means of utilisation to protect the aggrieved woman.
“We also need to empower women because the biggest challenge to violence against women is the capacity of the woman to seek help,” Madhi said.
On Violence Against Persons Prohibition Act (VAPP), Mahdi noted that the act has been receiving the publicity required.
She added that through such process, the citizenry had the opportunity to assist violated women legitimately.
The executive secretary, who decried that only few perpetrators of violence against women got prosecuted, said the laws required strict implementation to punish offenders.
While calling for stepping down the laws, Madhi also urged for partnership among stakeholders to grant women accessibility to institutions where they could seek for recourse.
She said that the group was working to increase education of the stakeholders on implementation of laws that would enable violated women seek justice.
Madhi called on the public to assist in building a strong support system for women violated at the family level and the social structure to avoid stigmatisation.
However, she said that the right to fair hearing and due process had enhanced the activities of the organisation, adding that WRAPA had intervened in the cause of women when justified.
The Chairperson, Board of Trustees of WRAPA, Justice Fati Abubakar, said that the “unacceptability of the reality of women’s rights has deterred women from their place in the society’’.
Abubakar, however, stressed the need for stakeholders to sensitise women on their rights.
On Gender and Equal Opportunities Bill before the Senate, the BoT chairperson said there was need for a review on the content of the bill “to make it beneficial to everyone’’.
“The bill needs a lot of research; it needs consultation for a better representation,” she said. (NAN)

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