By Ruth Oketunde (NAN)
The Abiodun Essiet Initiative for Girls (AEIG) has educated secondary school students in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) on the need to speak up against Sexual and Gender-based Violence (SGBV).
Mrs Abiodun Essiet, the Executive Director of the group said this on Monday in Abuja during a one-day sensitisation programme organised by the group at Government Secondary School Yangoji Kwali, Abuja.
Essiet, who was represented by Ms Josephine Emeghoghena, the group’s Project Officer, said that it is profitable to speak up against SGBV than to die in silence.
According to her, when anyone decides to be silent when being abused or not report a perpetrator, such person promotes SGBV indirectly.
She added that “it is better to speak up and get help than to remain silent and die or you will continue to be abused.
“That is why we are taking this time to teach teenagers and young adults on the need to speak up when abused or where you see someone being abused.
“If you see something, you must say something. Whether the person is in your house, in the school premises, in your classroom, in the market, anywhere, once you see something, you must say something.”
Essiet urged students to report to the appropriate authorities in the school and to seek guidance and counselling.
Mrs Rukaiya Adaviruku, the school Principal during her remark to the students, said the students as young boys and girls must know their rights so as to know when they are being abused.
Adaviruku said that herself and other teachers in the school are ready to listen and proffer solution to anyone abused either in the school or at home.
She said “that is why sensitisation such as this is also important; both for you students and for teachers.
“We appreciate the Abiodun Essiet Initiative for Girls for coming to educate and enlighten the students on SGBV. This is because SGBV is an important issue in our society and students can easily fall victims.
“I appeal to you to always speak up when you see something, tell your teachers, even if you are being abused at home.
“Come to me and tell me, and we will inform appropriate authorities and help you out of the situation.”
Highlight of the event was the selection of the school’s Anti-SGBV Student Ambassador, saddled with the responsibility of engaging other students on SGBV-related matters.