Kano State Government, says it has concluded arrangements to establish two counselling centres, to address stigma and enhance psychosocial support to rape victims.
Wife of the Governor, Hajiya Hafsat Ganduje, stated this at a virtual conference organised to mark the 2020 International Day of the Girl-Child, on Monday in Kano.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the event with the theme: “My Voice, Our Equal Future,” was organised by the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in collaboration with some development organisations.
International Day of the Girl-Child is an annual event declared by the UN and celebrated on Oct. 11, to highlight challenges and promote girls empowerment.
Ganduje, represented by Dr Zahra’u Muhammad, the state’s Commissioner for Women Affairs, said the centres would help to tackle stigma and silence attitude surrounding the act as well as give the victim a place of comfort.
She said the centre would be designed to accommodate and provide counselling services to the victims for at least two weeks with a view to reducing emotional trauma caused by sexual assault.
“Some of the victims, if not all, need adequate counselling and social reintegration to continue their normal lives,” Ganduje said.
She reiterated the state government commitment to accord priority to the girl-child education for sustainable development in the state.
The Minister of State for Education, Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, who spoke via Skype, said that the Federal Government had adopted proactive programmes to encourage the development of girl-child education.
Nwajuba urged girls to avail themselves the opportunities provided in the programmes to pursue education with vigour, to enable them to develop their potentials and excel.
He stressed the need for the state governments to give priority attention to education development to address the social and economic challenges in the country.
Peter Hawkings and Michael Banda, UNICEF Representatives, reiterated the commitment of the UN agency to enhance girls’ access to quality education.
Banda, who is also the UNICEF Senior Education Specialist, advised the girls to pay attention to their studies to achieve academic excellence.
Also speaking, the Emir of Argungu, Alhaji Samaila Mera, who featured in the forum via webinar urged stakeholders to continue to work toward the protection of the girl-child rights in the country.
Mera enjoined community and religious leaders to sensitise parents on the importance of education to encourage school enrollment in society. (NAN)