GENDER VIOLENCE “THE EXPERIENCE OF A CHILDLESS WOMAN”

20/02/20

[post-marguee]

DANIELS G.O

GENDER BASED VIOLENCE TAKES DIFFERENT FORMS RANGING FROM PHYSICAL ASSAULT, SEXUAL MOLESTATION, EXPLOITATION, STARVATION, INTIMIDATION, HARASSMENT, DENIAL OF BASIC RIGHTS, HAZARDOUS ATTACKS SUCH AS THE USE OF WEAPONS, EMOTIONAL, MENTAL, VERBAL AND PSYCHOLOGICAL ABUSE.

GLOBALLY ,THE VICTIMS OF DOMESTIC AND GENDER VIOLENCE ARE MOSTLY WOMEN.

WHILE MOST COUNTRIES OF THE WORLD HAVE ACHIEVED A LOT IN THE REDUCTION OF GENDER BASED VIOLENCE,NIGERIA IS STILL FAR BEHIND.

THE 2013 NIGERIA DEMOGRAPHIC AND HEALTH SURVEY (NDHS) WHICH SAMPLED 38,948 WOMEN AND 17,359 MEN IN ALL THIRTY SIX STATES OF THE FEDERATION, SHOWED THAT VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN IS A COMMON PRACTICE.

THE NDHS REPORT NOTES THAT DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CUTS ACROSS ALL SOCIAL ECONOMIC AND CULTURAL BACKGROUNDS AND THAT THREE IN TEN WOMEN HAVE EXPERIENCED PHYSICAL VIOLENCE SINCE AGE FIFTEEN.

AMARACHI UGOCHUKWU A PROGRAMMES OFFICER AT PROJECT ALERT, A NON GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATION FOCUSED ON GENDER BASED ISSUES IN LAGOS ALSO CONFIRMED A STEADY INCREASE IN CASES

“AMARACHI SAID THAT ABOUT ONE THOUSAND VICTIMS OF GENDER VIOLENCE APPROACH THEIR SHELTER ANNUALLY FOR HELP.

SHE NOTED THAT ALL VICTIMS WHO COME TO THEM ARE USUALLY GIVEN EMPOWERMENT IN TERMS OF JOB AND CAPACITY BUILDING TO ENABLE THEM EARN A LIVING, SO THAT THEY CAN BECOME LESS DEPENDENT ON SPOUSES WHO ABUSE THEM”

THESE SITUATION PROMPTED MY INTEREST ABOUT THE CASE OF CHARITY ISAAC,A FIFTY TWO YEAR OLD LADY FROM AKWA IBOM STATE, NIGERIA

CHARITY WAS FORCED OUT OF HER MATRIMONIAL HOME BECAUSE SHE WAS UNABLE TO GET PREGNANT AFTER EIGHT YEARS IN MARRIAGE.

I FIRST NOTICED CHARITY WHEN SHE CAME PICKING REFUSE BINS AROUND MY HOUSE. I GOT CURIOUS AND APPROACHED HER,AND SHE OPENED UP TO ME.

“IT IS A LONG STORY MADAM,THE QUEST FOR A CHILD IS WHAT HAS PUT ME IN THIS CONDITION OF POVERTY.
I SPENT ALL MY LIFE SAVING GOING TO ONE DOCTOR OR THE OTHER AND SPIRITUALISTS IN SEARCH OF SOLUTION.
WHEN AFTER EIGHT YEARS NO POSITIVE RESULT CAME,MY HUSBAND AND HIS PEOPLE THREW ME OUT OF THE HOUSE.

I WENT BACK TO MY PARENTS, THEY DID NOT SUPPORT ME SAYING THAT I SHOULD GO BACK TO MY HUSBAND,THEY NEVER REALLY SUPPORTED THE MARRIAGE FROM THE ON SET ANYWAY!
NOW AM LEFT WITH NOTHING EXCEPT THE LITTLE MONEY I MAKE FROM PICKING WASTE TO SELL”

CHARITY CAN BARELY AFFORD TO RENT A DECENT ROOM AS SHE NOW LIVES IN AN ABANDONED STRUCTURE NEAR HER FORMER CHURCH IN AINA ALADI AREA OF ALAGBADO.

I WENT FURTHER TO TRACE CHARITY’S FORMER HUSBAND EMEKA ISAAC WHO NOW STAYS ALONE AROUND SUBERU OJE IN ALAGABADO AREA TOO.

I SAT HIM DOWN TO HEAR THE HIS OWN SIDE OF HIS STORY

“I AM THE ONLY SON IN MY FAMILY AND THE PRESSURE HAS BEEN MUCH ON ME TO RAISE CHILDREN. EACH TIME I SEE MY FRIENDS CARRYING THEIR OWN CHILDREN, I ALWAYS FEEL SAD.
I HAVE DONE EVERY THING POSSIBLE IN THE PAST EIGHT YEARS FOR MY WIFE TO GET PREGNANT ,BUT NO SHOW”

THE HUMAN PART OF ME STARTED TO SUCCUMB TO PRESSURE AND ADVISED FROM FRIENDS TO GET MYSELF ANOTHER WOMAN AND THIS BECAME EASY FOR ME WHEN MY PEOPLE CAME TO CHASE CHARITY AWAY”

CHARITY AND HER FORMER HUSBAND ARE AMONG THE OVER FIFTY TO EIGHTY MILLION COUPLES GLOBALLY ESTIMATED BY THE WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION (WHO) REPORT OF 1991 THAT HAVE EXPERIENCED SOME SORT OF INFERTILITY IN THEIR REPRODUCTIVE YEARS OUT OF WHICH ABOUT TWENTY FOUR MILLION ARE FROM DEVELOPING COUNTRIES LIKE NIGERIA.

INFERTILITY BECOMES NOTICEABLE WHEN AFTER SEVERAL MONTHS TO TWO YEARS OF UNPROTECTED SEX, A WOMAN IS NOT ABLE TO GET PREGNANT.

ACCORDING TO A FERTILITY EXPERT JOSEPH OLAMIJULO AT THE LAGOS UNIVERSITY TEACHING HOSPITAL LUTH, THE ISSUE OF INFERTILITY SHOULD NOT BE A BLAME GAME.

“I THINK THE WORD BLAME IS PROBABLY NOT THE RIGHT WORD AS WE NOW KNOW THAT A THIRD OF THE CAUSES OF INFERTILITY ARE DUE TO THE MALE AND A THIRD DUE TO FEMALES TOO.

HE SAID THE COUPLE SHOULD BE INVESTIGATED TOGETHER AND EXPLORE THE NUMEROUS TREATMENT OPTIONS NOW MADE AVAILABLE BY TECHNOLOGY’

DESPITE THE MANY SACRIFICES THAT CHARITY ISAAC HAS MADE,SHE IS YET TO HAVE A CHILD,AND HAS NOT RETURNED TO HER MATRIMONIAL HOME

THE TEAM COORDINATOR OF THE LAGOS STATE DOMESTIC AND SEXUAL VIOLENCE RESPONSE TEAM TITILOLA VIVOUR- ADENIYI WHO CLASSIFIED HER CASE AS EMOTIONAL AND PSYCHOLOGICAL ABUSE SAID SHE NEEDED NOT TO HAVE SUFFERED THIS MUCH IN SILENCE.

” SHE SHOULD NOT BE SILENT ANYMORE, IF SHE IS LEGALLY MARRIED TO HIM,SHE HAS A RIGHT TO SEE SEEK REDRESS IN COURT SAID ADENIYI”

THOUGH SOME STATE GOVERNMENT LIKE LAGOS HAVE TAKEN LEGAL PROCEEDINGS TO PROSECUTE MEN WHO ABUSE WOMEN, THERE IS STILL A PUSH FOR A FEDERAL LAW CONCERNING VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN AND THE NEED FOR STRONGER SUPORT RESPONSE FOR VICTIMS.

Published by daranetworktv

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