As President Muhammadu Buhari takes oath for his second term in office on Wednesday, the Women Rights Advancement and Protection Alternative (WRAPA), an NGO, has called for increased government attention to victims of sexual violence in Nigeria.
Mrs Anisa Ari, the Senior Programme Coordinator WRAPA, made the appeal in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria on Wednesday in Abuja.
Ari advised the government to increase women participation in conflict resolution by placing women at the centre of peace making, mediation and conflict resolution.
“WRAPA wishes Nigeria a fulfilling presidential inauguration and we hope that the newly elected officials will be more focused on all inclusive governance; instil democratic practices and ensure sustainable peace building endeavours.
“As Mr President commences his new term of office, we urge government to deepen peace building processes by placing women at the centre of peace making, mediation and conflict resolution,” she said.
Besides, Ari advised government to take effective steps to protect women against all forms of abuses.
She called for full implementation of a UN resolution which seeks to reduce abuse of women in conflict areas.
“Government should take practical steps to prevent sexual violence, especially during conflict as presently experienced in some parts of the country.
“Full implementation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 (UNSCR 1325), which seeks to reduce the abuse of women in conflict areas will go a long way to achieving this,” she said.
She further advised that there was need to involve women in the process of peace building and conflict resolution because they were always at the receiving end of most conflicts.
“Abuse against women during conflict can come in form of sexual violence or abduction and the UNSCR 1325 says that these should be reduced to the barest minimum.
“When there are violent conflicts, government sets up investigation or looks for mediation but women do not appear in these investigation or mediation table,’’ she said.
Edited by Muhammad Suleiman Tola