ActionAid Nigeria congratulates the Nigeria Police for appointing a Force Gender Adviser in the person of CSP Olabisi Kolawole.
The anti-poverty and women’s rights organisation noted that this laudable step will go a long way in addressing issues of violence against women and girls in the country.
According to Dr Hussaini Abdu, ActionAid Nigeria’s Country Director, “this action has been long awaited and Nigeria will be the better for it. Dedicated gender units within the Police Force will encourage attitudinal change in the general public and support better reporting and handling of gender-based crimes.
“However, for this reform to be effective, the Nigerian Police Force must institutionalise a system to ensure efficiency in the unit and provide training and resources for members of the unit to better respond to gender-based crimes as well as put in place performance measures to motivate and reward this new form of policing that responds to women’s needs.”
Abdu also advised that “the force needs to begin to look at partnering with relevant stakeholders including CSOs, media, labour, youth groups, women organisations, the Nigeria Bar Association, sister law enforcement agencies and other relevant agencies on addressing legal challenges hampering the police ability to respond to issues of violence against women and girls”.
He added, “ActionAid Nigeria will continue to support national efforts to make Nigeria police services more inclusive and responsive to issues that affect women and girls in the country.”
ActionAid had for years engaged with the Nigeria Police on issues of violence against girls and women. Some of these engagements include stakeholders’ forum and training programmes involving police officers.