December 2 2017.
Human Rights Agenda Network joins the rest of the world to advance for the elimination of violence against women with the theme: Leave no one behind: End violence against women and girls.
On this 8th day of #16daysofactivism, HRAN devotes attention to ‘domestic violence’. Domestic violence is a major violation of rights of women in Nigeria and across the world. Most perpetrators are never punished as millions of women and girls suffer death or disability from violence on then by spouses, intimate partners, or family members. HRAN calls on Nigerian governments at federal and state levels to advance efforts towards its eradication.
Domestic violence is a pattern of behavior that involves violence or other abuse by one person against another in a domestic setting, such as in marriage or cohabitation. In Nigeria, the occurrence of domestic violence is often linked to the cultural belief that is socially right to hit a woman to discipline her. This form of violence has been on the increase with no hope of lessening given the very low reportage in Nigeria. Domestic violence has multiplier effects on the victim ranging from mental, health, physical and psychological and it is evident that more than two thirds of women and girls are victims of this form of violence. In a small scale study conducted in Lagos and Oyo states, it revealed that nearly 65% of educated women have been beaten by their husbands while 56% percent of low income market women have experienced similar violence. Domestic violence is a serious violation of human rights which the Nigerian constitution is against. Despite the legal framework in Nigeria that takes special stand on elimination of violence against persons especially women and children such as the Violence Against Persons Prohibition (VAPP) Act 2015, and other provisions in Criminal and Penal Codes, this form has failed to receive full legal support as victims prefer to remain silent than leave and face societal ridicule.
The Human Rights Agenda Network therefore calls on NGOs, relevant government agencies, the security operatives, the courts and members of the public to rise up against this form of violence and desist from seeing domestic violence as a private and matrimonial affair but rather as an offence against the state.
The HRAN pledges its support to the Nigerian society and urges the government and NGOs to put more efforts on promotion of women’s rights and protection of victims of domestic violence.