Photo: Women Affairs Minister Pauline Tallen
The Enugu State Traditional Rulers Council has outlawed girl-child marriage and other forms of gender-based harmful practices in the state.
This is contained in a communique issued at the end of a multi stakeholders’ strategic conference between the council and WomenAid Collective.
The conference was organised in partnership with the Ford Foundation with support from Enugu State Ministries of Gender Affairs, Chieftaincy Matters and Justice and the 50/50 Action Women of the state.
The communique, signed by the Chairman of the council, Igwe Lawrence Agubuzu, stated that the council was committed to the abolition of the obnoxious practice of sacrificing the girl child to shrines.
Agubuzu said the council condemned all forms of violence against women and girl child and was committed to their empowerment in the state.
He further said the council was committed to the abrogation of harmful traditional widowhood practices, including disinheritance of widows.
“We are committed to implementing the Supreme Court judgment that females have a right to inherit property from the family estate, whether married or not.
“We are also committed to actions to codify communal laws and regulations that will protect women and girls,” he said.
The royal father said the council supported the inclusion of women in the process of decision making on issues that affect them.
He also said the council encouraged the inclusion of women in community leadership.
He said the traditional institution would, henceforth, mediate in human and women’s rights’ cases, in line with state, national, regional and international human rights laws.
He said the council had begun to sensitise residents of the state to do away with anti-human customs that still existed in Southern Nigeria.
“Subsequently, we will have an Enugu State that is free from all forms of violence against women and girl child,” Agubuzu said.