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Nigeria: In the Last 6 Months, at Least 50 Female Miners in Nasarawa Have Reported Cases of Sexual Harassment from Male Colleagues - WIMIN Reports

Not fewer than 50 female miners working in various mining sites in Nasarawa State have suffered sexual harassment by their male counterparts within the last six months.

This was disclosed by the Women In Mining In Nigeria (WIMIN) at the opening of a 3-day training for service providers on Sexual Gender-Based Violence, in Lafia, the state's capital on Monday.

The body in collaboration with Ford Foundation also decried the rising cases of sexual harassment, sexual molestation and gender-based violence in the country and called for urgent action by various stakeholders to halt the menace.

WIMIN is a non-governmental organisation committed to promoting women inclusion at all levels of the Nigerian mineral exploration and mining sector, with programmes rooted in community engagement, research, capacity building and strategic dialogue.

WIMIN President, Janet Adeyemi, revealed that 90 per cent of her members have suffered sexual harassment by their male counterparts in the country within the last one year, noting that the anomaly has become a common and worrisome phenomenon across mining sites.

She lamented that the Nasarawa situation has become cause for concern, affecting members of the group across the 13 local government areas of the state.

Adeyemi, who was represented by the Vice President of the NGO, Regina Edzuwah, appealed to the service providers and stakeholders to show commitment in the fight against GBV and sexual exploitations in their respective work places and communities.

She pointed out that females rights have been the most abused and neglected despite several campaigns launched to create awareness on the matter.

Adeyemi said the training programme tagged: "Eliminating Sexual and Gender-Based Violence in Mining Host Communities," was aimed at finding solutions to GBV affecting females.

According to her, the training programme would cover various critical topics including understanding Sexual GBV, cultural and social norms influencing Sexual GBV, root causes and risk factors, legal framework and policies, survivor-centered approach, and trauma-informed care.

The WIMIN president further said the training was designed to enhance the capacity of service providers, including healthcare professionals, law enforcement officers, social workers, and community leaders to provide effective support to Sexual GBV survivors and to promote a coordinated community response.

She said, "In most mining sites and host communities in Nigeria, women are constantly abused, misused, over laboured, underpaid, shortchanged and even raped by the male labourers and staff of mining companies.

"The companies also unlawfully welcome the labour of young children who should not be exposed to the mining environment yet, but should be in school. The children are stretched and over laboured by mining companies and their wages are given to their mothers who are equally on the mining sites."

On her part, the Director, Public Defender at the Nasarawa State Ministry of Justice, Justina Allu, admitted that over 50 cases were reported to her ministry within the last six months, while expressing the state government's commitment to deal with offenders.

Source: Leadership


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