The Edo State Government has said it is working with consultants in domesticating a Sex Offenders Register, as part of the government’s stance against rape and other forms of gender-based violence.
Chairperson, Edo State Sexual and Gender-Based Violence Response Team (SGBV-RT), Prof. Yinka Omorogbe, who addressed journalists in Benin City, said the state government remains committed to its zero-tolerance stance for any form of gender-based violence.
Prof. Yinka Omorogbe who is also the State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, noted, “I am hoping that in the coming months, after working with our consultants, we will be able to launch our own Edo State Sex Offenders Register, which is expected to be a live register to prevent manipulation.”
She said, “I want to send a message to the perpetrators out there. We are coming for you. To all those who take pleasure in inflicting violence on their spouses, children, and others, know this day that your days are numbered.
“The full might of the Edo State Government and its entire people have been released against you. No more will, we keep silent; we are done hiding. We are done being ashamed. We will speak up against you and wherever you are; we are coming and justice will be served.”
The commissioner added that the Governor Obaseki-led administration is working tirelessly to ensure that appropriate measures are put in place to ensure that victims of gender-based violence can find safety and information needed to seek redress and also to ensure that perpetrators are tried, convicted and punished.
While condemning the killing of Miss Uwaila Omozuwa, Omorogbe said, “We will not condone such in our homes, schools, churches, mosques, and in our State. We refuse to let our daughters live in fear in their society.”
She decried the rise in gender-based violence, noting, “It is tragic that despite the law put in place, like the Child Right Law, the Violence Against Persons Prohibition Law and other relevant legislation outrightly condemning and criminalizing gender-based violence, including rape, there is still an alarming increase of such crimes in Edo State and Nigeria as a whole.”
According to her, the Edo State Sexual and Gender-Based Violence Response Team has in place Sexual Assault Referral Centres (SARC) in various government hospitals across the state to assist victims of gender-based violence, which provides relevant services ranging from medical, psycho-social, investigative, legal support at no cost.
She urged victims of gender-based violence to speak out by reporting any form of sexual or gender based violence, adding, “There is a Citizens Rights Department at the Ministry of Justice, Ezoti, where victims can confidently report all forms of Sexual and Sexual-Based Violence and receive required support at no cost to them.
“Victims can call these numbers at any time of the day and they will receive response on 09054628404 or 08145063810,” the commissioner added.