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SGBV: NGO appeals to Jigawa govt to establish more sexual assault referral centres

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An NGO, BAOBAB for Women’s Human Rights, has appealed to Jigawa state government to establish more Sexual Assault Referral Centers (SARCs) in the state.

The organization’s Board of Directors Chairlady, Dr Zubaida Nagee, made the appeal while speaking to newsmen in Dutse on Thursday.

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Nagee, who commended the state government for domisticating the Violence Against Person Prohibition (VAPP), pointed out that its important to establish more SARCs across the state.

She explained that the gesture is to provide psychosocial support to more victims of Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV).

“As step forward, after domesticating the VAPP act which shows that Jigawa is a progressive state, is for the state government to do more in establishing more SARCs.

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“This is because there is only one of such centres in Dutse and considering the number of LGAs and wards in the state, there is the need to have more.

“When women’s rights are violated sexually for some of them form the furthest LGA in this period of fuel hike that affects transportation fare and the fact women are the most poor of the citizens, they rather decide to remain at home.

“So we need more in terms of these centres because there are many things the women (victms) that are battered or assaulted sexually can get at such centres like psychosocial support,” she said.

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The official added that its imperative if the government can at least establish one in each of three senatorial zones of the state so as to enable victims access services of the centres.

“Even if we cannot get the centres in all the 27 LGAs, the government should at least establish one in each of the three senatorial zones or each general hospital of the state,” the official added.

According to her, apart from having the centres in place, there is also the need to equip them with qualified personnel in order to give adequate and sound intervention to victims.

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“And not just having the centres, but having them manned with qualified people to give intervention to victims is also important. And I’m sure Jigawa is blessed with medical professionals and other supportive staff that can bring relief to victims,” Nagee said.

The pilot SARC was established in 2016 in collaboration with Department for International Development (DFID), under its Justice for All (J4A) programme, at the General Hospital Dutse in Dutse Local Government Area of the state.

It was established to provide counseling services to victims of rape and also serve as an avenue where evidence could be established against rapists.

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Nagee and her team were in the state to present baseline research findings on the status of women and thier rights in the context of Muslim Laws in Baichi, Jigawa and Kano states.



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