The Edo State Government has said perpetrators of genital mutilation (girl-child circumcision) in the state face a four-year-jail term or N500,000 fine.
The Head, Edo Gender Based Violence Management Committee, Barr. Ulo Uzamere, disclosed this at a one-day sensitization on the provisions of the Violence Against Persons Prohibition (VAPP) Law across Edo.
The “VAPP Law has been established since 2015 and now every state in Nigeria has bought into it to prosecute perpetrators of violence against persons. It is no longer about familial settlement as it used to be as the government has stepped in to handle the issues.
“The VAPP Law contains, among other provisions, rape in any form which attracts life imprisonment for the perpetrators, while underage offenders will face 12 years’ imprisonment.
“The issue of girl-child circumcision attracts four years of imprisonment, N500,000 fine or both.
“Some other provisions include forceful ejection from home (for couples), which attracts a jail term of two years, a N300,000 fine or both; economic abuse; forced isolation or separation from family and friends; abandonment; spousal battery and inhuman treatment of widows/harmful traditional practises.”
Also speaking, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Social Development and Gender Issues, Mrs. Barbara Osobajo, said the engagement was aimed at ending gender-based violence and all other forms of violence against vulnerable people in the state.
According to her, the VAPP Law 2021 addresses the issues of abuse, violation of human rights of all genders and not women alone.
She urged the people not to keep quiet but report to the authority any form of abuse against women and the vulnerable, adding that will go a long way to strengthen the implementation of the law and make it useful in the state.