FG, NGO partner to curb gender based violence, child abuse




Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development and Cece Yara Foundation, a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) on Monday initiated a partnership to curb cases of gender based violence and child abuse in the country.


Minister of Women Affairs, Pauline Tallen, at the lunch of Cece Yara Foundation in Abuja, said that the collaboration had become necessary to handle cases of sexual abuse of the vulnerable group on the increase on a daily basis.


Tallen said that the ministry would provide all the desired support for the foundation because its entry into Abuja would create the enabled platform for services to reach a great number of abused children.


“I assure the foundation of my ministry’s full support, we are going to work together and this is a top priority to my ministry because the child is the future of tomorrow.
“It is the responsibility of all well meaning Nigerians to support and protect the child because it is our responsibility.


She said that the occasion was significant particularly because of the commissioning of the Cece Yara Foundation edifice meant to protect and support children that are abused.
“This is coming at a very right time as we commemorate the International Day for Violence against Women and Children which commenced on Nov.25 to end on Dec. 10.
“It is a 16-day of activism, I am very sad with the high incidence of child molestation, child abuse  and women abuse in our country,” she said
Tallen called on all well meaning Nigerians to rise to the occasion to condemn gender based violence, child abuse and molestation.
She said that without the action of the police and the judiciary, cases of gender based violence and child abuse would suffer.

She, therefore, called on them to do everything possible to support the fight against the menace.


Tallen said that the good thing about the Cece Yara Child Advocacy Centre was the concept of a one stop centre as it provided psychosocial medical and legal services under one roof in a confidential manner.


She said that the ministry had also secured a toll free line 08031230651 for reporting cases of Gender Based Violence in the country.


Godwin Odo, Child Protection Specialist, UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), commended Cece Yara Foundation for the initiative.

He said that it was most unfortunate that minors and toddlers were becoming victims of this ignoble act.


“We have a responsibility as a government, as stakeholders, as parents and as relations to ensure that we do all we can to prevent the occurrences of these incidences,” he said.


Odo said that there was a need to ensure that adequate remedies were obtained in terms of trauma counseling, psychosocial support and in ensuring that justice was done.

He said that this was because perpetrators of this kind of acts needed to be kept away from the society in accordance with the provision of the rule of law.

Mrs. Bola Tinubu, Founder, Cece Yara Foundation, said that cece yara meant ‘save the children’ in Hausa; so, the foundation was birthed because of the rate of child sexual abuse in the country.

Tinubu said that four years ago the first advocacy centre was established in Lagos and Abuja just got its centre.

She said that the foundation worked to ensure that children were able to access justice and were able to get the healing that they needed.

“What we need to do to reach out and help them is to provide the necessary space for them to come and disclose their abuse and for us to hold perpetrators to account.

“If we do not hold the perpetrators to account, we will not stop the abuse.

“We have to deter them by sending them a real good message that they will go to jail if they continue to molest children,” she said.

According to her, underreporting cases of gender based violence remains a challenge because it is very difficult for families to undergo the stress and pressure from the community thus the need to create awareness.


This, she said, was because it was viewed as something of shame when a child is molested, adding that this should change because the child is a survivalist and needed support.


“What we have here is the child advocacy centre; we have a very special service which is called the child forensic interview.

“What it does is that, it allows us to elicit valuable evidential information from children in a developmentally sensitive way in a legally defensive manner to be used in court.’’


Tinubu said that this helped the foundation to obtain information that is easily corroborated by the police so that to have valuable evidence that could allow for successful prosecution.(NAN)

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