By AbdulwahabÂ Abdulah
Nigerian women and the rights groups have been called upon to rise and confront rising cases of domestic violence in the country.
Edo State Attorney-General, Dr. Osagie Obayuwana; Mr. and Mrs. Femi Falana and the former Deputy Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Mrs. Funmi Tejuoso, led others to canvass the implementation of the Lagos Domestic Violence Law.
At a conference on â€˜Domestic Violenceâ€™Â organisedÂ by Women Empowerment and Legal Aid, WELA, in collaboration with Falana and Falanaâ€™s Chambers, the participants said implementing the law would enhance women and childrenâ€™s rights.
They expressed concerns over growing abuse of children and womenâ€™s right and vowed to encourage women and children to challenge such abuse in court and called for a concerted effort to raise the level of awareness on the law because of perceived little awareness and sensitisation.
Specifically, the seminar urged Nigerians, particularly lawyers, rights activists to take the advantage of the Lagos State law on domestic violence to confront the case of women and childrenâ€™s rights which border on torture, inheritance of widows, rape and such similar violence perpetrated against women and children.
Speaking, the Attorney-General of Edo State, Dr Osagie Obayuwa, said â€œno one is truly free when any person anywhere is oppressed. An injustice anywhere is injustice everywhere.â€
Obayuwana described everybody as casualties of domestic violence directly and indirectly, noting that â€œwe are all diminished when the fundamental rights of any human being is violated.â€
The chairperson of WELA, Mrs Funmi Falana, observed that â€œthe law have rarely been tested by victims of domestic violence. This is not surprising as judges, lawyers, human rights defenders and other relevant stakeholders are not familiar with the provisions of a law which has addressed the increasing rate of domestic violence in the society.â€