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Gender-Based Violence: Delta NAWOJ Speaks on Women Rights



The Chairperson, National Association of Women Journalists (NAWOJ), Delta state chapter, Comrade Pat Gbemudu has stated the need for women to be enlightened on their Rights so as to be free from all kinds of gender-based violence in the society.

Comrade Gbemudu stated this when the Delta State Coalition Against Gender based violence met with the wife of the State Governor and founder of the 05 Initiative, Dame Edith Okowa, at Government House, Asaba.

During rally, held as part of activities to commemorate the 2020 International day for elimination of all forms of violence against women, with the theme,“ Orange The World: Fund, Respond, Prevent, Collect”, the Chairperson said a lot of women do not know their Rights.

She averred that women  should  take actions  whenever they feel their Rights is being violated, adding that societal expectation of keeping silent and enduring abusive relationships should be shunned.

She equally counseled mothers to always make time for their daughters while enjoining girls protect themselves against sexual abuse and speak out if it occurs.

“The 16 days of activism starts on the 25th of November with the International Day of the Elimination of all forms of against women and it ends 10th December, the Human Rights Day.

“The 16 days is mapped out to sensitize mostly the women on their Rights that is why we are ending it up with the Human Rights day, because a lot of women don’t even know their rights. They don’t know they have rights to their lives and bodies. So, you don’t need to leave your body to a man as a punching bag”. She said.

Continuing, “ you see some women dying in marriages because of what people will say, they don’t know when to walk of a marriage. We are using this opportunity to tell every woman that you have the right to walk out of any marriage that you wants cost you your life.

“And again, we have a lot of cases on rape, we are equally using the opportunity to sensitize our girls on how to safeguard themselves so that they won’t be used. They should learn how to speak out to their parents especially their mothers.”

“And we are advising women to always give listening ears to their daughters so that they will know when their daughter is being abused. Most women don’t have the time even when the girl child wants to report to them what they are passing through, they won’t be there to listen. You see these girls going astray, this is the time to tell them what they need to know”, she stressed.

Asked whether there was no other way to resolve family crisis apart from walking out, she said: “yes, you don’t just walk out, separation is not divorce. You can separate so that two of you will be able to come to a common ground to really identify and x-ray all those grey areas that are causing the issue.

“Not that we are telling people to divorce. No! That is not the message. The message is that you own your life, you have the right to your life and no woman should die because you want to safeguard your marriage.”

Apart from the physical trauma , you have the emotional abuse. She added.

Earlier ,Dame Okowa advised mothers to avoid hushing their daughters in order to encourage them to speak up whenever they are faced with unpleasant situation.

The wife of the Governor thanked the different groups that made up the coalition saying their actions shows genuine interest in the fight against Gender-based Violence.

She however noted that the activism should be extended to Churches and market places to enable more people know when their rights are violated, adding that proper collation of data is also needed to achieve breakthrough.

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