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GBV: Over 100 women benefit from medical, legal clinic in Anambra

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By Lawrence Chukwudi

About one hundred women in Nteje community in Anambra State over the weekend benefited from a legal cum medical clinic on Gender Based Violence.

The programme took place at the Royal Palace of Igwe Rowland Odegbo, the town’s Traditional Ruler and was organized by a group from Rule of Law and Anti-Corruption (RoLAC), a human rights watchdog in Anambra State.

The legal clinic is part of a programme of RoLAC under an European Union funded project that is implemented by the British Council in Nigeria. It seeks the eradication of gender based violence and traditional practices that are harmful to womenfolk.

At the event, women were counselled on Violence Against Persons Prohibition Law while medical treatment was administered to some of the participants who are victims of gender based violence.

Daily Sun learnt that the women, at the programme, were further enlightened on the adverse effects of female circumcision and organ mutilation which is still witnessed in some parts of the state.

The clinic also advised women to report cases of rape and other sexual harassment to Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC) situated at Enugwukwu General Hospital in the state for prompt intervention and treatment.

Speaking at the occasion, the Executive Director at Victorian Clarion Foundation (VICLAF), Uju Onyedilifo gave an overview on the Child’s Rights Law of Anambra State and buttressed on the rights of children and how parents and caregivers can help to prevent child’s sexual abuse.

Onyedilifo who advised mothers to reexamine their strategy of parenting, also urged women to eschew culture of silence where victims fail to open up on incidences of rape and their challenges in their homes.

Again, Hope Nkiruka Okoye, spoke on the Violence Against Persons Prohibition Law of Anambra State, and harped on provisions of the law, such as – rapes, domestic violence, sexual abuses, and more.

Earlier, the Coordinator, Legal Aid Committee, Barr. Nkolika Ebede enlightened the participants on the legal implications of some inhumane practices against women including female circumcision, rape and female organ mutilation.

Speaking further on parenting, Ugochi Freeman, advised mothers to be dutiful in training their children against being exposed to immoral acts at early stage.

Also, RoLAC programme consultant and Director, WOMEN in Governance Network (IWIG-N) known as IDIKACHO, Prof Mercy Anagbogu, maintained that the event has transformed the women to ambassadors that would report any further case of sexual harassment on women in the community.

In their separate reactions, Ileaobi Caroline, Azongini Odegbo and Emma Chinwuba assured that they would spread the message of no circumcision, and abstinence from the harmful traditional practices in their neighborhoods.

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