Wives of first-class traditional rulers in Bayelsa State have thrown their weight of support to the fight against gender-based violence in Bayelsa State championed by the administration of Governor Douye Diri
To demonstrate their support for the fight against gender-based violence, the wives of the traditional rulers adopted a 13-year-old girl defiled by her father.
The President of Bayelsa Traditional Rulers Wives Association, Queen Josephine Diete-Spiff, represented by the Secretary, Her Royal Majesty, Diongoli Okportari, said the adoption is part of ways to show commitment to the steps taken by the state government on gender-based violence.
The traditional rulers’ wives and other stakeholders staged a massive walk around Yenagoa, the Bayelsa State capital with a declaration of support for the show of commitment by the state government against gender-based violence in the State.
Those that participated in the road walk organised Gender Response Initiative Team (GRIT), as part of activities marking the 16 days activism against gender-based violence with the theme ‘Orange the World: End Violence against Women now include the Association of Professional Women Engineers, National Association of Women Journalists (NAWOJ), The Ethan Rose Foundation, International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA), Medical Women Association of Nigeria and the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ).
Others include the BREECAN, GREP, Stand up for Women Society, FACE initiative, The Wind Dynasty, National Council of Women Society, the Albino Foundation, Bangof, representatives from Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Health, Wowican, Do Foundation, Juliet Pulu Foundation, National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons, National Human Rights Commission, Starrz Safety initiative and Collins Cocodia Foundation.
The Chairperson of GRIT, Mrs Dise Ogbise, pointed out that the road walk with key stakeholders is the re-affirmation of the commitment of Governor Diri towards putting an end to the incidents of gender-based violence.
According to Ogbise, despite the noticeable drop in the rate of gender-based violence in the state, there is the need for participation of the people of the state to join hands with the state government for an end to gender-based violence.
Also speaking, a member of the GRIT, Mrs Ann Obuebite called for all hands to be on deck to fight violence against women and children urging victims of violence to speak up so as to get urgent help.
The State Chairman of the Medical Women Association of Nigeria, Mrs Gbanaibolou Oweife, who observed that the years of violence against women and children have had psychological effects on the victims, assured that the union is committed to helping victims of abuse.
The chairperson, Breast Cancer Association of Nigeria, Bayelsa state chapter, Pastor Felicia Afenfia pledged their support towards eradicating all forms of violence against women and children.