by Hauwa Gambo
Violence against women and girls damages everyone
One in three women in the world experience some form of gender-based violence in her lifetime. This has made violence against women and girls become a global issue and the Nigerian Federal Government has taken a step further to protect the female race.
Early this week, the Honourable Minister of Youth Development, Mallam Bolaji Abdullahi unveiled Nigeria’s first anti-rape toll-free helpline –> 080072732255.
The 12 digit toll-free helpline is currently active on a test run phase between 8am-5pm on Mondays-Fridays. The helpline will become active 24 hours, 7 days a week in the next few weeks.
Most of us know someone who has had her human rights violated. Perhaps you yourself have been a victim. Whether it is a little girl left malnourished or uneducated, a woman beaten or raped, or a widow ostracised from her community, the cost to human lives and societies is staggering.
Nigerian women die needlessly for lack of proper health care, are forced into prostitution and human trafficking, face poverty for lack of an education, and cannot live up to their potential to contribute to a democratic and prosperous Nigeria.
The world must offer up more than words to free women and girls from violence. That is why the United States is once again participating in “16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence,” commencing 25 November with the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and ending December 10 with International Human Rights Day.
Violence against women and girls damages everyone — men, women, boys, and girls alike. We must stand up to the impunity that leaves perpetrators unaccountable for their crimes. The Embassy will post information about addressing violence against women and girls on their homepage (http://nigeria.usembassy.gov) and Facebook (http://facebook.com/usembassynigeria).