Organization for Public Awareness on Child and Women’s Rights (OPACTS) an NGO in Osun State, Nigeria, held village square Meetings and inaugurated Community Response Team (CRT) members to work along with in ending violence against women and girls in the Ara and Ojo communities of the State.
The community response team members were trained and certificated by Women Advocates Research and Documentation Centre (WARD-C) as the supporting NGO, with funding from Ford Foundation to foster Solidarity, Accountability, and Commitment to end violence against women and girls (SAC-VAWG).
The Executive Director of OPACTS, Barr. Ayoola Olusegun, while addressing the participants said that the goal of the meeting was to put an end to violence against women and girls in the Ara and Ojo communities in Osun State.
Barr. Ayoola appreciates all the people present for taking out of time from their busy schedules to deliberate with her team on how to proffer a lasting solution to the societal menace.
The religious leaders present also contributed by saying it’s ungodly for men to violate their God-giving life partners (wives) and the girl child in any manner, emphasizing that the holy books kick against such despicable acts.
The women leaders of the two communities made their contribution and assured the NGO of their support and also promised to visit every nook and crannies in their communities to sensitize both the women and men on what they have learnt at the meeting.
Barr. Ayoola in her address reiterates the importance and the need for proper upbringing of children in equal manners such that the male and female children grow up to know that they have equal rights, responsibilities, and opportunities in society.
“The trained CRT Members were presented to the communities and their working tools were handed over to them and their roles, duties, functions, and responsibilities to the community were read out before all present.
“The training conducted by WARD-C was aimed at strengthening the CRT members on how to handle cases of violence against women and girls within their communities.
“The village square meetings was successful with a lot of experience sharing and exposure of community members to the importance of commitment PACTS which serves as the guiding rules/caution to everyone in the community against violence towards women and girls,” she said.
Also speaking, the Traditional Leaders of both communities, His Royal Highness Dr. (RTN) Windapo Olubayo Adesola, Alara of Ara, and His Royal Highness Oba Olayinka Gbolagade Tiamiyu, Olojo of Ojo represented by Babakekere with all the palace chiefs said that God did not create women to be slaves to men but rather as partners.
They said that the Community Dialogue and the village square meetings have shed more light on the rights of women and girls in the communities.
“Now that the commitment PACTS has been signed in the two palaces, any man who violates his wife or girl child will be handed over to the appropriate authorities for deserving penalties, They added.
The meeting was well attended by different stakeholders in the communities including religious leaders, traditional leaders, artisans, and youths, among others.
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