Borno Inaugurates Online Platform to Reduce Violence against Women

18th January 2016

Borno Inaugurates Online Platform to Reduce Violence against Women

DSC_0375The Shehu of Borno State, His Eminence, Abubakar Ibn Umar Garbai El-Kanemi has inaugurated the Borno State Observatory Steering Committee (OBSTEC) to help address reported cases of abuse and Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) in the state. At an event held at the Grand Pinnacle Hotel Maiduguri early December, the royal father represented by Alhaji Mahmud Maina, applauded the initiative, enjoining members of the OBSTEC to maintain the high standards attained by similar platforms in other states of the federation.

The Observatory, an initiative of the Nigeria Stability and Reconciliation Programme (NSRP) features information on the prevalence and trends of VAWG in focal states and details response to these incidences by state and non-state actors. It is a virtual ‘Safe Space’ for documenting anonymous reports of Violence against Women and Girls (VAWG) through an online platform accessible to the general public.

Developed by the Fund for Peace (FFP), the Observatory is also supported by an OBSTEC (managed by Women in New Nigeria) comprising Civil Society representatives and professionals from law enforcement, educational, religious and health institutions tasked with the responsibility of facilitating remedial action in response to reports of VAWG.

Representatives of government and traditional institutions at the inauguration event took turns at expressing their commitment to the success of the initiative in Borno state. To set the ball rolling, the Shehu assured all present of his cabiniet’s commitment to reducing VAWG in the state particularly in this period of insurgency. In his words:

‘We will continue to support initiatives like this. Our women have suffered and we must all support those who have come to give us a helping hand to ensure that this suffering at least reduces’.

While giving his remarks, Speaker of the Borno State House of Assembly Hon. Abdulkareem Lawan, represented by the Deputy Speaker and Chairman House Committee on Women Affairs Hon. Danlami Kugbo, pledged to continue lobbying for the influential participation of women under the current administration. The speaker also promised to be accessible and available to all OBSTEC members.

In response, Dr Ukoha Ukiwo, NSRP Programme Manager expressed hope that the cooperation of the Deputy Speaker will facilitate the codification of the National Action Plan (NAP) in the state house of assembly. He reiterated the programme’s willingness to support the state government with data that will add value to its policies. He also urged security agencies to help enforce the laws when promulgated.

Borno state holds the pride of place as the first state in Nigeria to draft a state action plan for the implementation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 on women, peace and security. The Observatory is currently operational in Kaduna, Kano, Plateau and Rivers states. The highlight of the inauguration was the presentation of the NAP document to the state government amidst applause from all present.

Go Back