Wednesday, November 26, 2008

16 Days of Activism is here again!

Concept for BAOBAB’s 2008 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Based Violence
In Commemoration of the UDHR @ 60

BAOBAB for Women’s Human Rights is joining the rest of the world to mark this year’s 16 Days of Activism against Gender based violence. This year is remarkable because it also coincides with the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. BAOBAB’s commemoration of this year’s 16 Days will be centered on the 60th Anniversary of the UDHR. The emphasis around the UDHR 60 is important because without the practical recognition of the human rights of women, the total realization of the human rights of all is still very far from us. The period is a great medium to further reiterate the call for a world of peace free from injustice and discrimination.
Advocacy around women’s rights issues in the last 6 decades has resulted in some significant but not sufficient changes.

Very good examples include the various international instruments at the United Nations level and at the African regional level. One persistent challenge has been the non domestication of these treaties at the National more

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Young Women In Nigeria protest against Naval beating of Lady

WE ARE NOT HAPPY :: A message from some Young Women in Nigeria in reaction to the beating of Uzoma Okere.....

We learnt recently about a case where six armed naval ratings attached to a Rear Admiral went berserk in Lagos , beating up and stripping a lady identified as Uzoma Okere. This is totally unacceptable and as citizens of this country, we believe that we have a responsibility to call on other Nigerians especially the governement, law practitioners and other relevant authorities to bring these men to justice. In a country where we are committed to protecting the human rights of individuals, we cannot fold our arms and do nothing. We were not there at the scene of the incidence to stop such distaseteful act but we can still do something and even if we cannot do anything, we will speak against it. This is totally wrong.

This young lady could be any one of us, our mother, our sister, cousin, aunty or someone close to us. She id the victim today. Tommorrow we do not know who it will be. Should we continue to live in fear? Is our country not safe enough? Can we not find refuge in our justice system? I don't think any of these is true.

We as young Nigerian women are not happy with what has happened and we are saying something about it now. We are also calling on our mothers, fathers, uncles, aunties, brothers, sisters and others who have the authority and resources to punish these culprits to do so. This is the time for change in the world and we have to contribute in our own little way to creating that positive change and making the world a better and safer place for us, our mothers and daughters.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Nigerians react to naval ratings‘ assault on lady

Nigerians react to naval ratings‘ assault on lady

By Chinyere Fred-Adegbulugbe, Olalekan Adetayo and Victor Sam
Published: Wednesday, 5 Nov 2008

Angry reactions on Tuesday trailed the Monday assault by armed naval ratings on a lady, Uzoma Okere, in Lagos.
All those who reacted, including human rights activists and hundreds of online readers of THE PUNCH, described the act as barbaric and called for the prosecution of the perpetrators.
The reactions came at a time when some concerned Lagosians who witnessed and recorded the dastardly act on a camcoder released its video footage to the public.
Six armed naval ratings attached to a Rear Admiral identified as Harry Arogundade, went wild on Monday on Muri Okunola Street, Victoria Island, Lagos, beating and stripping the lady naked.
According to eyewitnesses, the naval ratings hit the lady with their gun butts and beat her with horsewhips.
She was accused of not quickly giving way for the naval officer‘s convoy on her way home in her Mitsubishi Colt car.
By the time the rage ended, Okere, who was forcibly handcuffed and dragged into a private residence on the street in a humiliating assault, was left with a battered face, blood-shot eyes and bruises all over her body.
She was admitted at Kamorass Hospital on Victoria Island.
As at 6.30pm on Tuesday, 98 reactions had been posted to THE PUNCH‘s website by Nigerians (both at home and in the Diaspora) who were irked by the incident, making the news item top on the list of most read stories on the website for the day.
All of them agreed that no man, no matter his social status, had the right to infringe on another citizen‘s fundamental human right.
In her reaction, the Director, Gender Development Action, Ms. Ada Agina-Ude, described the assault on the lady as a display of raw power.
In a telephone interview with one of our correspondents, Agina-Ude called on lawyers, women and human rights activists, to rally round the lady with a view to getting justice.
She said, ”My first reaction is that what type of military personnel will beat a woman to that extent because of a traffic offence, assuming she even committed it. I don‘t understand that kind of mentality.
”She did the right thing by getting a lawyer. I plead with the lawyer to ensure that the case is pursued to the end.”
Another activist, Dr. Joe Okei-Odumakin, while describing the incident as condemnable and barbaric, said all those involved should be brought to book.
She added that it was regrettable that a Rear Admiral who should be looked up to by junior officers for direction could allow his boys to misbehave in his presence.
Also, the Deputy Director, Women Advocacy and Documentation Research Centre, Mrs. Grace Ketefe, said the naval ratings‘ action was against the dignity of a woman.
Ketefe said because of her organisation‘s belief that the perpetrators should not go unpunished; it would soon address the public and petition policy makers on the issue.
But the Nigerian Navy, on Tuesday, attributed the incident to provocation from the victim.
Addressing journalists in Abuja, the Director of Information, Nigerian Navy, Commodore David Naibada, alleged that Okere provoked one of the naval ratings when she stepped out of her car that was in front of the admiral‘s convoy and seized the horsewhip he was holding.
Naibada accused the victim of making up stories to embarrass the admiral ”who incidentally was a junior officer to her father when the duo were in the military school together