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Lagos reports 10,000 domestic violence cases in 2 years

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Lagos, Nigeria’s arguably most populous state with estimated 22 million people, reported over 10,007 domestic violence and sexual cases between May 2019 and August 26, 2021.

Attorney-general and commissioner for justice, Moyosore Onigbanjo, disclosed this at a media briefing to mark the domestic and sexual violence awareness month, September 2021, organised by Lagos State Domestic and Sexual Violence Response Team (DSVRT).

The theme for this year’s event is “institutionalising our reforms.”

Onigbanjo, who doubles as chair of the DSVRT said despite the team’s various initiatives and the zero-tolerance declared on domestic in Lagos, the state continues to see a steady increase of formal reportage of over 150 cases daily.

Read Also: 1 in 4 Nigerian girls experience sexual violence – UNICEF

Giving data of the cases, Onigbanjo stated: “Under the Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu’s administration, DSVRT, from May 2019 till August 26, 2021, has handled 10,007 cases which are into two categories, adults and children.”

The breakdown, according him, is as follows:

4150 domestic violence; 177 rape cases; 255 attempts to commit rape/sexual assault; 246 sexual assault by penetration/threat; 877 others separation, not taking responsibility of children, neglect, custody of the child; non-GBV, among others, 436 child abuse/physical assault; 271 defilement cases; 13 defilement by minor to minor; 454 child labour, abduction neglect/others; 148 sexual harassment/molestation cases.

“A total of 2980 children have experienced emotional abuse (These children have been exposed to domestic violence within the home),” Onigbanjo added.

He noted that some of the affected children have been taken through counselling to ensure they are able to psychologically deal with the events they have witnessed without a permanent negative impact on them.

The attorney-general added that the Office of the Public Defender, (OPD), Lagos Public Interest Law Partnership, (LPILP), as well as the International Federation of Women Lawyers, (FIDA), provided free legal representation to 188 survivors of domestic violence, ranging from judicial separation, divorce, custody of children, mediation and settlement.

Harping on the provision of shelter for survivors, he said the state ministry of youth and social development, as well as strategic partners: non-governmental organisations, including God’s Home for Women, Day Spring, Project Alert and Cee Hope have played key roles in ensuring rescued survivors are evacuated to a safer environment of shelter homes.

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