A non-profit making organisation, Centre For Women’s Health And Information (CEWHIN), has expressed worry over cases of sexual abuse and violence against women and girls happening in the State of Osun
The NGO said cases of sexual abuse and violence against women and girls in the state were disturbing and required urgent attention.
Director of the organisation, Mrs Atinuke Odukoya, stated this during the Close Out/ Accountability Forum on Strengthening Access To Community Based Psychosocial Support System For Survivors of Violence Against Women and Girls, held at NUJ Press Centre, Osogbo, on Tuesday.
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Odukoya urged religious leaders to speak out against the trend, adding that there was a need for them to understand that they are the custodian of culture.
According to her, over 150 people including religious groups and Community Psychosocial First Aiders (PFA’s) who were first responders to victims of sexual abuse have been trained in the state on how to help the victims and put a stop to it.
She said: “The issue of sexual abuse whether in the community or place of worship is a lot and It is very disturbing. Everybody is trying to cover it for some reasons. It is a lot.
“It requires awareness raising for prevention purposes. It is better for us not to have children that are raped or defiled. One of the core purposes of this program is for us to get people that can help victims with mental health support.
“We want them to have access to Psychosocial First Aid who can point them discreetly to a psychologist or psychotherapist so that they can have the trauma support that is required.
“We need to put a stop to the ‘third party embarrassment and shame’. People need to know that they have to speak up. Some people keep silent because they felt that reporting will break the home offender.
“Religious and community leaders need to understand that they are supposed to be custodians of culture. Osun State is known as ‘Ipinle Omoluabi’ and a real ‘Omoluabi’ will not rape and defile people.”