EU/UN Spotlight Initiative: Journalists brainstorm on ethical reporting of VAWG

The EU/UN-Spotlight Initiative and media practitioners have brainstormed on the best way to reporting issues of violence against women and girls (VAWG) with a view to reducing it to the bearest minimum in support of the vision 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) of the United Nations.

Speaking in a four-day event which had participants drawn from the media, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), Non Governmental Organisation (NGOs), National Orientations Agency (NOA) and other stakeholders, in Calabar, Thursday, Spotlight Initiative Communication Coordinator, Khadijah Ibrahim Nuhu, charged media on ethical reporting, advocacy and solution journalism.

She said the aim of the seminar was to increase participant’s knowledge on ethical reporting and to engage participants on gender inequality discourse and their roles in impacting society through dissemination of accurate information on evils of violence against women and girls.

“You are to deal more on advocacy journalism than solution journalism as we all join hands to embark on this campaign of ending all forms of violence against women and girls,” she said, and charged participants to always give a voice to victims of gender based violence and shoulders for them to lean on.

Presenting a paper with the theme: “overview of violence against women and girls in Nigeria / Cross River state, policies, interventions, and trends,” Mr Victor Atuchukwu, Child Protection Specialist, UNICEF, said pepertrators of physical, emotional and sexual violence against girl children were mostly people victims know.

Atochukwu said established data indicated that 60 percent of children experience violence before 18 years of age and that less than 50 percent of victims confided in someone about their experience but that out of about six percent of those who sought help, less than five percent of them received help.

“Six out of every 10 children experienced some form of violence. One out of two children in Nigeria have experienced physical violence,” he stated.

The National Orientation Agency (NOA) in Cross River state, Amisegne Ogban, in his presentation, recommended that “clearly stipulated sanctions” be meted out to tradional ruler who indulges in settlibg rape cases.

Another resource person, Joshua Olufemi, harped on why gender and girl child reporting is a sensitive area which should be given attention, adding that there was need to protect identity of victims bee protected.