Women Solidarity Incorporated (WOSI) with support from the Spotlight Initiative through the Office of the High Commission on Human Rights has concluded a three-day community level awareness and consultative training on human rights and national legislations relating to rights of women and girls in Goba Town, Todee District, Montserrado County.
The project titled “Strengthen Awareness on Legal Framework Related to Women and Girls in Liberia” has been implemented in four counties (Montserrado, Grand Cape Mount and Nimba).
The training which started on Wednesday, December 16, 2020 with an all-men session, continued on the 17th and 18th of December 2020 with all women and all youth sessions respectively.
The training which basically focus on the Rape law, the Domestic Violence law and the Inherence law brought together 150 participants from rural communities in Todee District, Upper Montserrado County.
The initiative focuses on curtailing violence against women and girls while increasing women access to justice and improving their ability to hold duty bearers accountable to respect, protect and fulfill their basic human rights.
The project targets stakeholders in remote communities who have limited or no access to national human rights related laws.
Speaking at the start of the awareness and consultation in Goba Town, Women Solidarity Incorporated Monitoring and Evaluation Officer Prince W. Jallah said the project is intended to inter alia simplify laws relating to women and girls and conduct awareness and consultation on the three national women rights related instruments.
“Stakeholders will be educated on these three laws, provided copies of said laws and given the opportunity to critic the laws and make recommendations to support the revision, harmonization, amendment of the laws or the formulation of new laws in alignment with international human rights standard,” Jallah said.
Mr. Jallah noted that the awareness will also help empower women and girls to access the justice system while at the same time advocating for their rights.
“We are here actually to carry on awareness and consultation on these three basic national women’s rights laws to sensitize the women, men and the youth about these laws so that they know, understand and have access to these laws to enable them seek for justice whenever their rights are abused or violated,’’ Mr. Jallah explained.
According to him, lack of adequate information and access to these laws most especially the domestic violence and Inheritance laws, are major factors for which most of the violence cases against women and girls are compromised in rural area.
“We have notice that in rural parts of this country, people sometime don’t have justice due to lack of information on these laws and how citizens can have access or seek justice,’’ he observed.
The WOSI Monitoring and Evaluation Officer, Prince W. Jallah however called on national government to help strengthen rule of law in the nation in order to address some of these issue in rural Liberia.
“We want to encourage you today that as you leave this place, go and share the knowledge with others in your communities and help spread the message to everyone in order to address some of these issues in the community,” he concluded.
In remark, one of the participants, Madam Lydia Goba thanked the organizer for such a great initiative in their community, but appealed for the organization to continue with the awareness and consultation to reach more people and communities to improve the situation of us (women and girls) in rural areas
“With what I learned here today, I will go and start the awareness in my home to educate them about violence against women and girls and to report any case of such most especially the issue of rape,’’ Madam Goba explained.
The stakeholders however promised not to hide or compromise any rape cases or settle it as family matter as it has been in their community for time past.
For her part, Madam Hawa Zubah lauded WOSI and the Spotlight Initiative for providing the space to educate and consult rural community people about the laws.
“For today I am happy because I learn a lot about women’s rights and all other things or violence against us, the women in Liberia. I also learned what to do in order to take care of someone that is abused. I am really happy for this program,’’ she said.
The Spotlight Initiative is a global multiyear partnership between the European Union and the United Nations to eliminate all forms of violence against women and girls by 2030.
To achieve these goals on ending violence against women and girls in Liberia, the Spotlight Initiative is providing support and funds to Women Solidarity Incorporated through the Office of the High Commissioner on Human Rights.
Women Solidarity Incorporated (WOSI) is a national women’s rights civil society organization working for women to get and enjoy their rights in Liberia.
The institution is also working to alleviate abuse and exploitation of women and girls as well as provide them with opportunities that enable them rebuild their lives and cater to their families and contribute to communities.