iMPLEMENT VAPP LAW & GESI POLICY
The Implement Violence Against Person’s Prohibition (VAPP) law and Gender Equity and Social Inclusion (GESI) policy campaign sought to engage stakeholders to institutionalize the provision of support services for Violence Against Persons (VAP)survivors andadvocate for the implementation of the Violence against Persons Prohibition (VAPP) law and the Gender and Social Inclusion policy in the State. The project is funded by the USAID and DFID-funded Electoral Empowerment for Civil Society Project (EECSP) in Nigeria that seeks to increase participation by marginalized groups in political processes. LANW is one of the CSOs supported under the project by NDI to conduct citizen-centered advocacy and campaigns with women to increase their participation in the electoral process.
The campaign adopted a multi- pronged approach with LANW working in collaboration with Government Agencies, Security Agencies, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), Political parties, Media etc.to engage, strategize, commit, act and monitor the implementation of the VAPP law and GESI policy.
Through diverse public awareness exercises across the State, over 1030persons were reached directly in meetings or other engagements while over Three million (3,000,000) were reached on Radio through the live phone in discussion program and jingles. Sensitization around the campaign had 140 tweets, 714 retweets, 1033 likes, 2915 engagements, 61756 impressions and 98 replies from LANW alone with several allies also serializing the VAPP law and GESI policy using their respective social media handles. LANW also featured in several other radio programmes and meetings discussing the campaign.
In fulfillment of the commitments secured by allies and stakeholders to collaborate and synergize efforts to support the implementation of gender inclusion policies and the mitigation of VAWIP, the Ministry of Human Services and Social Development (MHSSD) inaugurated an implementation coordination committee of stakeholders for the VAPP Law and another for the GESI policy and led sensitization on the campaign to Government House presenting the Simplified VAPP law and GESI policy to the Deputy Governor and other Commissioners. Within the project period the Executive on its part increased the number of women in appointive positions to its present state of almost 50/50 proportion of females and males in the Executive council and approved the 2020 budget with provisions items that aid the implementation of the VAPP law and GESI policy including for the
- Establishment of the family court;
- Establishment of 2 shelters for survivors of violence within Kaduna Metropolis,
- Increase women’s economic empowerment programme fund from N200 Million to N400 Million
- Provision of funds and drugs for SARC centers.
LANW supported the MHSSD in facilitating a training of social welfare officers across the State and Gender Based Violence (GBV) stakeholders to prevent and mitigate GBV where the campaign was introduced to ensure the full implementation of the law in all LGA’s and ensure citizens have access to information on VAPP law. The MHSSD thereafter alongside the Implementing Committee mapped stakeholders and developed and drew up operational standards of operation. MHSSD also approved the used the harmonized template for recording VAP related cases which was developed and validated during the training for Social Workers and SARC staff. A toll free hotline for reporting Violence cases operated by MHSSD, Salama Sexual Assault and Refferal Centre (SARC), Gwanna Awan Hospital and LANW received calls in enquiry or report of VAPP related incidence providing support or Refferal services to victims.
Other allies and stakeholders embarked on series of sensitization activities, advocacy and providing support to survivors of violence in support of the campaign. Quarterly multi stakeholder and reflection meetings enabled LANW and the allies to assess the level of progress with the campaign and plan follow up strategies. The last reflection meeting brought out short and long term activities to scale up the campaign. The activities included review of the GESI policy, strengthening synergy between the MHSSD, judiciary and bench, engage Religious leaders using already produced literature /scriptures that support women’s participation in politics and governance amongst other activities.
Amongst the lessons learnt were that projects with traction with government or MDA traction has potential for buy in and success. Close engagement with key stakeholders was seen as very effective in gaining buy in and action while working in collaboration with the right allies is better than working in silos.