A consortium of NGOs consisting of Actionaid, Gambia Red Cross Society, TARUD, SIMMA, World View The Gambia and MYTAPOLA, in their bid to address the issue of violence against women and HIV/Aids, on Tuesday organised a one-day sensitisation program for Central River Region Technical Advisory Committee members in Janjangbureh.
In his opening remarks, Lamin Darboe, deputy governor of the region, said The Gambia is ready to champion all forms of human rights and protection of women. He pointed out that some cultures and religious beliefs are hindering the effective performance of women and girls in nation building. He noted that under the leadership of President Alhaji Dr Yahya Jammeh, women form part of the top decision makers which in the past never happened. He commended Actionaid and the consortium of NGOs for organising such an important forum.
For his part, Worldview coordinator, Haruna Kuyateh, asserted that violence against women and girls has become an issue of global concern, adding that a number of reasons have been forwarded for the escalation of this violence which includes poverty, a breakdown in family and societal values and norms.
Mr Kayateh reiterated that the most disheartening aspect of the whole episode is that increasingly, women and girls are dealing not only with violence itself but also with HIV/Aids.
The Gambia Family Planning Association Regional Program coordinator, Yadi Nget, also speaking at the ceremony, said the orientation workshop was designed to build the capacity of the TAC members to enable them to recognise that violence against women and girls is a violation of their fundamental human rights. It also has an impact on the right to freedom of movement and the rights to live in peace and dignity of the womenfolk.