According to the latest figures released by the Ministry of Women Affairs, there were 24,720 reported cases of GBV, FGM, and other forms of Gender Based violence in the 36 States and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) between the end of September and the beginning of October.
According to the Minister, 975 of these cases were fatal, while 1,505 of them were closed either by the courts, community bodies, family members, religious leaders, or survivors due to fear or intimidation.
The Minister further stated that 8,540 cases were still pending at police stations or within the courts, with only 306 convictions and sentences being handed down across the country in the past four years.
Ms Uju urged stakeholders to put their efforts to put an end to this scourge, which she said was becoming increasingly worrying and affecting the lives of many citizens, especially women and children.
The minister said that the setting up of mobile courts, particularly in rural areas, would help to promote the Rule of Law, improve access to justice and improve criminal justice pathways to deal with violence against women.
“If we don’t have a rule of law,” she said, “there is no solution to any of these issues.
And if we don’t have that rule of law in place and it’s being held up and the prosecution isn’t being properly done by dragging these cases out and using these people as examples, we are never going to get it right.”
“Can we get a rule of law even without mobile courts?”
“If a mobile court can be set up for traffic offences, why can’t we have one for the protection and preservation of our children, women and vulnerable people?”
The minister said that the molestation of a 9-year-old girl allegedly by her father is under investigation and that the government will take all necessary steps to ensure that justice is done.
The minister also accused the government of indulging in jungle justice, in which people are lynched by mobs. She urged the government to take drastic steps to prevent this from happening again and to arrest the culprits.
The Minister also said that the government is committed to ending all forms of violence and providing justice to victims and survivors, as well as to promoting women’s empowerment and girls’ education.