19 May 2017

Liberia: MIA Wants Stronger Actions Against Gender-Based Violence

Internal Affairs Minister Dr. Henrique Tokpa has called for stronger actions to address the issue of sexual and gender-based violence.A release issued in Monrovia Thursday, 18 May says Dr. Tokpa has highlighted the role of traditional and religious leaders, youth and community members in protecting and promoting the rights of women and girls.

He was speaking Thursday in Buchanan, Grand Bassa County at the opening of a two-day social cultural audit of traditional, cultural and religious practices of sexual and gender based violence and harmful cultural practices affecting women and girls in Liberia.

The Internal Affairs Boss says there is no reason for women and girls to suffer any form of violence. Minister Tokpa emphasizes that the perpetration of violence against women can be blamed on the way people are brought up in society on grounds that the family fabric remains the backbone for development and progress in society.

"Sexual and Gender Based Violence is largely and deeply rooted in individual attitudes that condone violence within the family, community and the state", he argues.

In remarks, UN Women Officer-in-Charge Mr. YawoMensahMaglo said violence against women remains one of the most pervasive abuse of human rights in the world.

Yet he says not much has been done to bring perpetrators to justice and to respond to the situation of survivors.

"Violence against women is one of the least prosecuted crimes, and one of the greatest threats to lasting peace and development, as women are the backbone of nation building globally", he warns.

Mr. Maglo recognizes the support of the Kingdom of Sweden to addressing violence against women through the Government of Liberia and UN Joint Program on Sexual and Gender-based Violence or SGBV.

He says progress in the fight against SGBV is being made in the areas of strengthening the justice system to prosecute SGBV cases; increasing access to health services; and in addressing the psychosocial needs of the survivors and affected families despite the many challenges.-- Press release

Liberia

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