First Lady of Kebbi and a Board Member of Women at Risk International Foundation, Dr Zainab Shinkafi Bagudu, has stressed the need for speedy domestication of protective laws such as the Violence Against Person’s Prohibition (VAPP) Act across States in Nigeria. Similarly, she pleaded for the passage of the Equal Opportunity Bill she asked by the National Assembly to protect women and girls from rape and gender-based violence in the country.
Dr Shinkafi- Bagudu was a guest on Africa Independent Television; (AIT)’s June 6th edition of its popular programme “Weekend Show” hosted by Osasu Igbinedion and Andy Madaki, to speak on the worrisome topical issue of “Rape and Gender-based Violence” from a Northern Nigerian perspective. This was her contribution to current efforts to find sustainable solutions on the upsurge gender-based violence across the country.
Dr Bagudu enumerated efforts by the Northern Governors’ Wives Forum and WARIF, an active CSO in the pandemic. When tasked on the failure of Kebbi and some other Northern states to domesticate the CRA and VAPP act, she explained the steps by her office and others both within the state and nationally on the sensitive issue; she further disclosed that H.E. Gov Abubakar Atiku Bagudu was committed to finding a solution in the most acceptable way to all soon; adding that His Excellency was the force behind passing the VAPP act as a Senator in 2015 after it had failed many readings- a fact not many are aware of.
According to the child health specialist “whatever the reasons, the upsurge of cases of rape and murder of young innocent girls across the country has made it clear that immediate grassroots solutions are required”
Aside from education and laws, social engagement and reorientation are also necessary alongside economic empowerment, according to Dr Bagudu.
She firmly maintains the importance of facilitating a conversation between conservatives and progressive Religious and Traditional gatekeepers of our communities so as to get the message across to a bulk of Nigerians and where the problem occurs and who have no access to modern information tools such as internet and television.
Muhammad Mikail Head, Communications