Thursday, 20 May 2021

UNICEF tackles Nigerian church leaders on indecisive stands on SGBV

UNICEF Chief field officer in Nigeria, Mohammed Okorie has condemned the passive disposition of the church in Nigeria on issues bothering on sexual violence against the female gender. Stating that their lack of decisive stands on the various harmful and cultural practices targeted at women and the girl- child is counter productive to global efforts meant to tackle the issue.

He therefore, has called on leaders of christian denominations to take a definite stand against sexual and gender based violence in Nigeria in order to end the menace.

Okorie who stated this in Calabar when he flagged off a two day stakeholders meeting of Christian Council of Nigeria  powered by the EU- UN Spotlight Initiative opined that the church must wield it's overwhelming influence over the harmful and discriminatory  treatment being meted out to the female gender if maximum impact is to be achieved in ending the menace.

The UNICEF envoy disclosed that stakeholders engagement was designed to equip participants with vital skills and  information needed to address the challenge of SGBV as well as mobilised the church hierarchy towards eradicating the the threat to women and girls with balanced and objective bible interpretations devoid of generic bias .

In his address,the Chairman of the State chapter of Christian Council of Nigeria which is a component of the Christian Association Of Nigeria CAN, Reverend Takis  Caifas expressed delight at the collaboration aimed at confronting the age long deprivation suffered by the womenfolk based on inhuman theological  doctrine and degrading cultural practices.

He described sexual and be gender based violence as a horrific and grave violation of human rights which should not be tolerated in any ramification.

Speaking, the General Secretary,CCN, Reverend Evans Onyemara listed such act of violence to include physical, sexual, verbal, emotional and psychological abuses as well as unequal access to educational opportunities which have combined to frustrate the female gender from maximising their potentials

He expressed optimism that the synergy would address the multiple biblical misconception employed in perpetuating harmful and dehumanizing practices targeted at women and the girl child for ages.

In her remark, a leading resource person at the  event Mrs Uzuaku Williams  implored participants to rise a voice against abusive  practices women are being subjected to under the guise of culture and lopsided doctrine within the Christian   fold.

Participants which included pastors, women and youth groups were drawn from churches under the aegis of Christian Council of Nigeria comprising Anglican, Baptist Communion, United Evangelical Church Wining All, Methodist Church, Presbyterian, Salvation Army, AME Zion and the.
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