ODAHIEKWU OGUNDE, Yenagoa
As part of efforts to curb cases of domestic violence against persons in Bayelsa State, the Governor, Senator Douye Diri, has inaugurated the state’s Gender Response Initiative Team (GRIT).
The committee is headed by gender advocate and legal practitioner, Dise Ogbise.
While inaugurating the 18-member committee in Government House, Yenagoa, Diri said with the signing of the Violence Against Persons Prohibition Law (VAPP) earlier this year, Bayelsa had become one of the few states that had domesticated the federal law.
His Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Daniel Alabrah, in a statement on Wednesday, quoted Diri as charging the committee members to work as a team.
He equally urged them to collaborate with relevant ministries, departments and agencies, particularly the Ministries of Women Affairs and Justice to ensure the implementation of the law to the letter.
Diri, who noted that the task ahead of the committee was enormous, urged the members to tackle the menace holistically as there are cases of men being victims of abuse.
He said: “Domestic violence is on the increase regardless of tribe, religion and social status. Earlier this year, we domesticated the VAPP Law in the state.
“We expect this committee to work with MDAs, especially the Ministries of Women Affairs and Justice, to ensure that the law is implemented to the letter.”
He expressed confidence in the committee’s capacity to nip in the bud issues of violence against persons as its membership includes medical personnel, lawyers, law enforcement agents among other professions.
“I charge you to work as a team and bring your experience to bear on your mandate in the interest of the state. The chairman of this committee has a lot of experience because of what she has been doing in FIDA as well as advocating on gender-based issues in the state,” Diri added.
In her response, the chairman, Dise Ogbise, expressed their commitment to discharge the mandate in line with the provisions of the Bayelsa State Violence Against Persons Prohibition Law 2021.
Ogbise, who thanked the governor, his wife, Dr. Gloria Diri, members of the state House of Assembly for the confidence reposed in them, assured them that with their support, they would take the campaign to every nook and cranny of the state.