Queen Chigbo, the Executive Director of Phew Foundation International, a Non-Governmental Organisation, NGO, says one out of every three Nigeria women is a victim of gender-based violence.
Mrs Chigbo made the assertion on Monday during a sensitisation exercise against domestic violence at Ukpiovwin Community, Udu Local Government Area of Delta.
She said that the Warri-based NGO decided to embark on the sensitisation programme because of the increasing number of rape cases and gender-based violence in the area.
The executive director said the sensitisation was also to commemorate this year’s “16 days of Activism against Gender-based Violence.”
She appealed to the Federal Government to ensure strict enforcement of the laws against domestic violence to arrest the ugly situation.
Mrs Chigbo said that strict enforcement of the laws against offenders would serve as a deterrent to others who might want to indulge in the unwholesome practices.
“One out of every three women has undergone gender-based violence. It cuts across all ages and sexes, but predominantly more with the women.
“Our advice is for government to ensure that laws are effectively implemented and cases of abuse are treated strictly.
“Parents should understand themselves because family is the building block of a nation.
“They should train their children with the right values to prevent reccurrence of domestic violence from generation to generation,” she said.
Mrs Chigbo identified poverty, illiteracy, pride, insecurity and drug inducement as some of the factors causing domestic violence.
The executive director, however, said that with increased awareness, the menace could be eliminated from society.
She also identified some of the dangers inherent in domestic violence to include: emotional problems, unsafe abortion, HIV infection and death.
The New Agency of Nigeria, NAN, reports that about 70 women between the ages of 25 and 50 participated in the exercise.
They were taken through in-depth counselling on ways to avoid being victims of gender-based violence.
One of the participants, Fejiro Onos commanded the foundation for the exercise and called for more such programmes in the area to curb the ugly trend.