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CSOs unveil campaign against sexual harassment in tertiary institutions



Nasiru Yusuf



Civil society organisations, under the aegis of the Anti-sexual Harassment Advocacy Cluster, have unveiled an Anti-Sexual Harassment campaign to end all forms of harassment against the female gender in places of higher learning.

KANO FOCUS reports that the group have also appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to consider immediate assent to the Anti-Sexual Harassment bill into law.

A statement by Executive Director Centre for Awareness on Justice and Accountability (CAJA), Kabiru Dakata, on behalf of the consortium, said the appeal become pertinent due to the alarming rates of sexual assault against female undergraduates in Nigeria.

Dakata said the National Assembly has recently passed the Anti-Sexual Harassment Bill into law, the bill seeks to promote and protect ethical standards in tertiary institutions.

According to him, the bill that was sponsored by Sen. Ovie Omo-Agege and 57 other senators in 2016, eventually scaled through in October 2019 after a series of setbacks.

He said thought the passage was facilitated by the famous BBC documentary which exposed two lecturers of the University of Lagos, and a lecturer of the University of Ghana, who was caught in the act.

Dakata said, “70 per cent of female graduates from Nigerian tertiary institutions had been sexually harassed in school, mostly by classmates and instructors, a 2018 World Bank Group survey indicated.

“In the survey conducted in 19 tertiary institutions across six states in Nigeria by the consortium of civil society organisations, including CAJA, Social Action, We the People, and led by Youth Alive Foundation (YAF), lack of clear reporting channels was one of the discouraging factors to report sexual harassment.

“56 per cent of respondents said there were no clear channels to report sexual harassment in their institutions, and they were unaware of any law protecting them against sexual harassment on campus. Also damning, is the lack of a unified law to combat the scourge in all Nigerian higher institutions.”

He added, “Sexual harassment includes unwanted, inappropriate, and offensive sexual advances like repeated and unwanted sexual invitations; insistent requests for dates/dinner/drinks; phone calls, messages, etc., solicitation of sexual activity or other sex-linked behavior by promise of reward (overt or subtle), sexual comments, touching the someone’s body, hair or clothes, standing close or brushing up against another person, kissing sounds, howling and smacking.”

Dakata explained that the launch of the Anti-Sexual Harassment campaign will help address some of the issues outlined and the longer-term objectives of lending its voice toward the timely Presidential Assent to the Anti-Sexual Harassment Bill.

He declared that the bill when signed into law, will also enable the Establishment of the Independent Sexual Harassment Prohibition Committee in tertiary in tertiary institutions and the Formation of the ‘Campaign Against Sexual Harassment (CASH)’ Club.

Members of the cluster include Centre for Awareness on Justice and Accountability (CAJA) Kano State, Youth Alive Foundation (YAF) Abuja, Village Debbo Care Initiative (VDCare) Kaduna State, Sefjamil Media and Development (SMD) Kano State, Joint Association of Persons with Disability (JONAPWD), Gombe State Chapter, Women`s Rights and Health Project (WRAHP) Lagos State and Connected Development – Akwa Ibom State (CODE).

This Project is supported by the strengthening civic advocacy and local engagement (SCALE) project through the United States agency for international development (USAID). The contents of this message are the sole responsibility of the Anti-Sexual Harassment Advocacy Cluster and do not reflect the views of the United States government.



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Gov Yusuf rejects tribunal judgement, heads to appeal court



Nasiru Yusuf Ibrahim




The Kano State Governor, Abba Kabir Yusuf, has vowed to appeal the judgement of the governorship election tribunal which nullified his election and declared the APC candidate, Nasiru Yusuf Gawauna as the winner.

KANO FOCUS reports that Yusuf made the declaration on Wednesday night, while making a broadcast to the people of the state.

He said his legal team had been directed to appeal the judgement at the court of appeal in order to reclaim the mandate given to him by the people of the State.

He, therefore, Called on the good people of the state to remain calm and continue to be law abiding as security agents have been directed to ensure the safety of lives and property of the citizens.

“Let me assure you that the this government would continue to work for the development of the people of the state as the judgement will never dampen our spirit or discourage us from the good work we have started.” he said.

The Governor, who thanked the people of the state for their continued support and cooperation, urged them to go about with normal activities.

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Kano records 5,800 cases of Diphtheria – UNICEF



Nasiru Yusuf Ibrahim




The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), on Tuesday, said that Kano State has recorded 5,800 suspected cases of Diphtheria from January to date.

KANO FOCUS reports that the Head, UNICEF Field Office, Kano, Mr Rahama Mohammned-Farah, stated this in Kano during a one-day media orientation on Diphtheria outbreak.

The UN Agency said the cases were recorded in 39 local government areas of the state.

According to him, Kano State has the highest number of recorded cases in the country, adding that Diphtheria was a highly contagious and infectious disease that could cause death.

Mohammned-Farah stressed that proactive measures were necessary to stem the outbreak.

“Recently, we have seen a surge in the number of reported Diphtheria cases in Nigeria, and Nigeria is currently facing an outbreak that needs to be stopped and prevented.

“As of July, Diphtheria cases have been on the rise. As of last week, over 400 suspected cases with 11 deaths have been reported in Kano.

“Out of the 39 LGAs affected, eight are the most affected, including Ungogo with 2,651 cases; Dala 989, Fagge 943, Gwale 714, Kumbotso 713, Nasarawa 538, Kano Municipal 506 and Tarauni 269,” he said.

He said that 60.8 per cent of the suspected cases had been reported in children not vaccinated, which reinforced the critical need to address the issue of zero doses, especially in Kano State.

“UNICEF delivered 1.2 million vaccines to the Kano State Government in our continuing support to the government response to Diphtheria outbreak.

“Diphtheria outbreak is a threat to child survival, health and the wellbeing of children. UNICEF is collaborating with government and partners to respond to the emergency to save the lives of children affected.

“In Kano state, UNICEF supported Tetanus-Diphtheria reactive vaccination campaigns in February, April and August, vaccinating 23,200 children in round one.

“While 277,796 children vaccinated in round two and 29,500 others in round-3 of the exercise.

“We engaged 150 traditional leaders on Diphtheria outbreak and distribution of Diphtheria IEC materials, and deployed 1,500 VCMs to the worst affected LGAs to conduct house-to-house sensitisations and referral of suspected cases to health facilities.

“Media has a key role to play particularly in infection prevention, and risk communication and community engagement,” he said.

Also speaking, Dr Muhammad Nasir-Mahmoud, the Director-General, Kano State Primary Healthcare Management Board, said the state government had adopted drastic measures to curtail spread of the disease.

“We are committed towards educating the public about what is happening and the National Center for Disease Control (NCDC) has promised that Kano will be accorded priority in terms of vaccine distribution,” he said.

While describing the media as partners in the fight against Diphtheria, Nasir-Mahmoud urged them to support the campaign against the disease.

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IPAC appeals to Kano governorship tribunal to be impartial



Mukhtar Yahya Usman

The Interparty Advisory Council of Nigeria (IPAC) has urged the judges of the Kano election petition tribunal court to discharge its duties with utmost integrity and impartiality.

KANO FOCUS reports that this was contained in a statement issued by the organization secretary Kano chapter Nuhu Idris on Tuesday.

IPAC also called upon the tribunal to consider each case diligently and ensure that all the parties involved are given equal opportunities to present their argument and evidence.

It could be recalled that the election tribunal has fixed Wednesday 20th September 2023 to deliver judgment on APC’s petition against Abba Kabir Yusuf.

A hearing notice issued by the Secretary of the election petition tribunal on Monday said the judgment would be delivered at 9.00 a.m., at the High Court of Miller Road in Kano.

Mr Idris said the organization has acknowledged the importance of the electoral process in a democratic society, where the voice and choice of the people are paramount.

He said the ongoing legal proceedings before the tribunal are a testament to the vibrancy of democracy and the resolve of citizens to seek redress through legal means.

“IPAC firmly believes that justice must not only be done but must also be seen to be done.

“We, Therefore, implore the tribunal to maintain transparency in its proceedings allowing the public and all concerned parties to have confidence in the outcome of the legal process, the statement said.

He added that it is essential that the tribunal’s decisions are guided by the rule of law and the facts presented, rather than any external influence.

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