A non-governmental organisation, Women Peace Council, in Dala local government area of Kano State, has joined calls for stiffer penalties against perpetrators of gender-based violence to serve as a deterrent to others who might have the intention of committing the same crimes.
The Council’s Women Development Officer, Fatima Muhammad, made the call during a town hall meeting organised by Women Peace Council under the Community Initiative to Promote Peace, (CIPP), to acquaint women in the area with the Violence Against Persons Prohibition Act 2015.
Muhammad expressed the Council’s worry over the continuous violence against women and children which she attributed to a lack of stiffer penalties.
According to her, “The programme was to create awareness to the women and female children on where to report cases of violence against women.
“There should be stiffer penalties against violators, because it is when it is stiffer that it will serve as a deterrent to others. Where violators were allowed to go scot-free and not made to face the wrath of the law is responsible for the continuous violation and in some cases, parents decide not to report the case to the relevant authorities.
“Punishment such as castration should be meted on male rapists, while women who abuse male children and adult male should be handed life imprisonment. Because such stiffer penalties will completely eliminate the threats in the society and serve as a deterrent to those who nurse such evil acts in their minds”, she said.
The Programme Officer for ARDA on the CIPP project in Kano, Faruk Umar Abdulsalam, also backed the call by the women, noting that punishment against violators is not enough to scare people away from such evil acts knowing that they will be released back to their community after serving a prison term.
In her remarks, a member of FIDA, Barr. Fatima Ahmad, said that the Penal Code that is used in the northern part of the country does not contain some of these crimes experienced, as such no grounds to punish such offenders; “hence the need for the State government to adopt and domesticate the VAPP, which covers all these crimes and states what nature of punishment should be given to someone found guilty”.