Stakeholders task journalists to expose gaps in gender-based violence elimination

Stakeholders have urged media practitioners to expose gaps hindering the elimination of Sexual and Gender-Based Violence in the country.They also tasked journalists to expose the perpetrators of GBV to ensure survivors get justice.

The stakeholders made the call at a one-day training organised by the Nigeria Association of Women Journalists, Nigerian Television Authority chapel of the Nigerian Union of Journalists for female journalists.

The training was carried out in collaboration with the Female Reporters Leadership Programme of the Wole Soyinka Centre for Investigative Journalism.

The NAWOJ President, Ms. Ladi Bala, said the media has a role to play in ensuring that GBV and other harmful traditional practices affecting women and children are eliminated in society.

She stressed the need for journalists to amplify GBV cases in their reportage to ensure that policies and programmes targeted at the cause are implemented.

She reiterated the role of media as the voice of the voiceless, adding that when GBV cases are amplified in the media space, relevant authorities and society will partner to ensure that perpetrators are prosecuted.

The Convener and NUJ-NTA Secretary, Mrs. Bassey Ita-Ikpang, said the exercise was meant to broaden the knowledge of female journalists on GBV reporting, gender inclusivity and cyberbullying in the face of Artificial Intelligence and mental health.

Ita-Ikpang encouraged the media to collaborate with Civil Society Organisations and other stakeholders to expose the gaps in the elimination of GBV and ensure the government takes action.

“There are certain places we can’t enter and there are certain steps, especially for those of us that work with the government.

“So we should collaborate with the CSOs because there are so many gaps. So we should be exposing the gaps, write and let the government take action. Let us not be deterred, but keep writing because that is the only thing we have,” she added.

The Founder of She Forum Africa, Ms. Inimfon Etuk, urged the media to also focus on the needs of GBV survivors in their reportage, and not continue to promote and provide a fore background for perpetrators.

She said, “We should avoid sensationalising our headlines. GBV reporting is not something you use to trend or get a loud margin for our media houses.

“It is a crime that has been committed, someone has been violated and someone’s human rights have been violated.

“And the media, more than anything else, has the responsibility of advancing the narrative in a way that brings perpetrators to book; that should be the focus and priority of every report.”

On her part, Mrs. Halima Musa, the Director News, NTA, underscored the need for the media to use their various platforms to continue to champion the fight against GBV and other harmful traditional practices affecting women and children in society.


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