Wau State Marks 16 Days Of Activism Against Gender Based Violence

Civil society groups and international organizations joined by the local NGOs on Monday in Wau marked the 16 days of activism against gender based violence.

By James Deng Dimo

WAU, 27 November 2017 [Gurtong]-
The occasion was attended by State government officials led by the State Political Advisor, Valentino Majok Majok on behalf of the State Governor at Wau State Ministry of Education main hall.

In a statement released by the State Ministry of Education during the occasion, it read that “The objective for commemorating the 16 days activism against gender based violence in Wau is to mitigate GBV risk, especially on early, forced marriage on girls, continue to advocate for better policy for women and girl challenges attitudes, behaviours and activities that led to an increase of forced, early marriage and barrier to girl’s education.

The statement further said that beyond the launch, there will be several activities and engagement at all levels on ending child marriage, girls education, access to justice for women, peace and leadership as well as women’s safety and security.

According to Wau State Women Association Chairlady, Bhaja Mohamed el Alimin, ending all forms of violence against women and girls in community is a collective responsibility for traditional leaders, faith based groups and government to ensure that those committing violence against women and girls face the law and account for their crimes committed.

“We are calling on the government to always arrest the criminals behind crimes against women and girls to be tried and we are calling for a review on the provisional law that could add heavy punishment on those committing these crimes,” said Mohamed.

She also called for an end to early marriage.

“Early marriage always affects our young girls in their education and physically. They lose their education and they also adopt many difficulties during birth which ranges from developing fistula cases,” she said.

According to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Wau State Field Officer, Mary Gurance, million women and girls have been subjected to other forms of violence and harmful practices such as female genital mutilation which affects as  many as estimated to 200 million women and girls.

Gurance also said the health consequences of violence are enormous and include permanent disability, psychological trauma, and unwanted pregnancies, complications associated with forced or unsafe abortion, HIV and others.

“Protecting women and girls from violence and harmful practices is not only a moral and human right imperative, it is also critical to the economic and social progress of a nation, “she said.
 

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