By Cherno Omar Bobb
Coordinator of the CSO GenderPlatform, a civil society advocate group of women’s rights, organisations andindividuals, Ms Tabu Njie-Sarr, has called for an end to violence against womenand girls.
Ms Njie-Sarr was peaking Thursday tothe Bakoteh market women during commemoration of the 16 Days of Activism AgainstGender-Based Violence as part of efforts to create awareness on Beijing +25Review Process – accelerating progress for gender equality by 2030. She recalled that the Beijing Declarationoutlined 12 critical areas for the emancipation of women and girls all over theworld.
Ms Njie-Sarr said these areas include women and poverty, educationand training, women and health, violence against women, women and armedconflict, women and the economy, women in power and decision-making,institutional mechanisms, human rights of women, women and the media, women andthe environment, and the girl child, among others.
Shefurther said that, according to the United Nations, every minute a woman islikely to be violated by an intimate partner or hurt so severely that she canlong longer be able to provide for her family.
Ms Njie-Sarrfurther said that gender-based violence among women aged 14-15 accounts formore deaths and disability than the combined effects of cancer, malaria,traffic injuries and war.
In TheGambia, she said there is a recent outcry against attacks on women and girlsranging from rape, wife beating, female genital mutilation, child marriage andinsults, noting that insults in the Gambia have some maternal incarnation.
She also wentto state that, this year in particular had been quite difficult for peopleacross the globe especially women who had to experience violence in their homes,suffer economic loss and loss of life during childbirth because of the COVID 19lockdown.
The CSOGender Platform coordinator also described the rejection of the 2020 Draft Constitutionbill by the National Assembly, which she said was their hope for womenempowerment with its progressive provisions, as a setback and she called on thegovernment to do everything possible to get the draft constitution pased.
Whilecommending the government for their efforts to protect women and girls, shealso urged them to enforce laws protecting the vulnerable groups in the society.
Ms Njie-Sarrsaid sexual and gender-based violence continue to exist and are causing a lotof anguish amongst victims’ families. On behalf of the CSO Gender Platform, shethanked funders of their activities.
The CSO Gender Platform wasestablished to provide high-level strategic support during the transitionaljustice process in the Gambia as well as advocacy for gender justice. Itrecognizes that progressive national and international instruments can help inempowering, protecting and promoting women’s rights. The platform considers theparticipation and development of women as a fundamental human right particularlyin a state that is the primary duty bearer to promote and fulfill rights ofeveryone.