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PRESS STATEMENT

Press Statement

For Immediate Release

3rd April, 2020

Alhaji Yahaya Bello,

The Executive Governor of Kogi State,

Lugard House,

Lokoja, Kogi State

 

PRESS RELEASE

RIGHTS VIOLATION; WOMEN’S RIGHTS ORGANIZATIONS CALL FOR THE SUSPENSION OF KOGI STATE COMMISSIONER FOR WATER RESOURCES

 Your Excellency,

RE:

We, the undersigned organizations, appreciate the prompt response of Your Excellency to the pictures and video in circulation showing assault of Miss Elizabeth Oyeniyi in which she alleged that Abdulmumuni Danga, the Commissioner for Water Resources in Kogi State assaulted her on the 29th of March 2020.

We welcome the press statement expressing zero tolerance of the Kogi State government to sexual assault and violence. We are also glad to hear that the incidents will be investigated by the appropriate authorities. The allegations against the Commissioner are weighty and of such nature that when confirmed will be damning of the perpetrator, and so we call on your administration to ensure these allegations are thoroughly investigated by an impartial body to ensure justice is served.

Speaking in Abuja, the Women’s Rights Activists led by Dorothy Njemanze of Dorothy Njemanze Foundation with support from Action Aid Nigeria and Global Affairs Canada said: “We are dismayed by the recent news of alleged physical and psychological violence perpetrated by the Kogi State Commissioner for Water Resources, Abdulmumuni Danga, against Elizabeth for criticizing him on Social Media. This is especially appalling because the accused commissioner allegedly abducted her, physically assaulted her, stripped her naked and took a video recording of her with the threat that the video would be released if she speaks about the incident. As if that was not enough, her phone was destroyed to avoid documentation of evidence, and she was forced to retract her statement and apologize under duress. This is the height of abuse of power and outright violation of rights. If left unaddressed, such heinous act by power holders against women will increase thereby leaving women and girls more vulnerable than ever. We are sure that his Excellency, Governor Yahaya Bello, is against the abuse of power in office, and an ardent advocate of the fundamental rights of Nigerian citizens, thus, he will not allow this matter be swept under the carpet.”

The lady in question has had to flee for her life and deserves protection pending the outcome of investigations. She and her family are being threatened, they have been receiving incessant threatening calls. She is also currently undergoing medical procedures because of the extent of her injuries. It is important to also bring to your attention that the same Mr. Danga has also been accused of assaulting another woman and her children a week before this current incident is alleged to have taken place, tearing her clothes, spraying pepper spray on her and her kids. This situation cannot go unaddressed. We are calling on the Kogi state government to demonstrate its commitment to addressing gender-based violence and redeem itself now by:

  1. Immediately suspending Mr. Danga as a Commissioner until the investigation is completed, this will enable a level playing ground for investigation.
  2. The perpetrator and accomplices of the assault on Elizabeth are identified and prosecuted in accordance with the law.
  3. The life and full protection of the survivor, her family and other persons involved in the case, including their property is guaranteed.

While we count on Your Excellency to do the proper thing in the circumstances, we will continue to monitor the case and ensure that the survivor gets the assistance and support she needs at this time.

As women’s rights organizations, we are keen on seeing this case to a conclusive end, for the violation of the right of any woman is a violation of the rights of all women which must attract consequences. We are watching keenly as this opportunity to get justice for the Nigerian woman is too important to miss.

#End

ENDORSEMENTS:

  1. Action Aid Nigeria
  2. Education As A Vaccine
  3. International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA)
  4. Sterling Centre for Law & Development.
  5. DiniDari Foundation
  6. Haly Hope Foundation
  7. PITCH Nigeria
  8. Centre For Liberty
  9. Adopt A Goal for Development Initiative
  10. Widows Development Organisation
  11. ACTS Generation
  12. Women’s Aid Collective (WACOL)
  13. Emerge Women Development Initiative
  14. ACTS Generation GBV
  15. Arise Nigerian Woman Foundation.
  16. Women Advocates Research and Documentation Center (WARDC)
  17. Responsible Citizenship and Human Development Initiative
  18. Women Foundation of Nigeria WFN
  19. CEE-HOPE Nigeria
  20. Neighbourhood Care-Well Foundation (NCF)
  21. Gender and Development Action- Centre for Training and Development Activities (GADA-CETDA)
  22. Women Empowerment & Peace Building Initiative (WEPBI)
  23. Project Alert Nigeria
  24. WANEP NIGERIA
  1. International Women Communication Center
  2. Prof Mnguember vicky Sylvester
  3. Women in Politics Forum
  4. Kadaria Ahmed
  5. Daria Media Foundation
  6. 100 Women Lobby Group
  7. Centre for Impact Advocacy
  8. Lex Community Initiative
  9. Newtwork of Women with Disability
  10. Ayisha Osori
  11. WILPF Nigeria
  12. Rahama Women Development program Bauchi
  13. Vision Spring Initiative.
  14. ISMPH (Int Society of Media in Public Health )
  15. Kebetkache Women Development and Resource Centre
  16. Olive Community Development Initiative
  17. Sesor Empowerment Foundation
  18. Global hope for women and children foundation
  19. Association of Women living with HIV/AIDs in Nigeria Kebbi State Chapter (ASWHAN)
  20. Change Managers International Network
  21. Attah Sisters helping hand foundation bauchi State
  22. Gender Equality, Peace and Development Centre
  23. Nana Girls and Women Empowerment Initiative Kebbi
  24. Christian Women for Excellence and Empowerment in Nigeria (CWEENS)
  25. Kungiyar Tallafin Mata Development Initiative Kebbi
  26. Gender Awareness Trust.
  27. Fahimta Women and youth development initiative Bauchi
  28. Country Associates Network (CANET)
  29. Abiodun Essiet Initiative for girls
  30. Association of Aliwe daughters International(AADI)
  31. Safe Circle Foundation
  32. SWOFON (Smallscale Women Farmers Organisation In Nigeria)
  33. Global Rights
  34. Prof. Chidi Odinkalu
  35. Joy Onyesoh Foundation
  36. Mojúbàolú Olúfúnké Okome
  37. Women Information Network (WINET)
  38. Above Whispers Media Foundation
  39. Development in Practice, Gender and Entrepreneurial Initiative (DIPGEI)
  40. WHER
  41. Working Moms Africa
  42. Women Situation Room Nigeria (WSRN)
  43. CeedarSeed Foundation
  44. The Village Debbo Care Initiative (VDCare)
  45. LACVAW
  46. TIERS
  47. TechHer
  48. Cece Yara Foundation
  49. Nigerian League of women voters
  50. Onomese foundation
  51. Centre for Women’s Health and Information (CEWHIN)
  52. UTO Foundation
  53. Child Care & Adult Protection Initiative (CCAPI)
  1. Wanda Adu Foundation
  2. Citizens Center for Integrated Development and Social Rights (CCIDESOR)
  3. Zamani Foundation
  4. Brave Heart Initiative for youth and women
  5. Participation Initiative for Behaviour Change in Development (PIBCID)
  6. First Guture Leadership
  7. Ovie Brume Foundation
  8. FEMBUD
  9. Dorothy Njemanze Foundation.

Editors’ notes

Dorothy Njemanze Foundation is a Non-Governmental, non-partisan, survivor run organization committed to amplifying Human Rights. Our mission is to promote basic ethics and values in the society through encouraging social responsibility, orientation and re-orientation by properly addressing abuse related issues with the aim of aiding, healing and re-integrating victims; inspiring attitudinal change to fight sexual and gender based violence incidences.

CONTACT

Email: dnfalerts@gmail.com | www.dnf.org.ng