BY ANKELI EMMANUEL, Sokoto
The Sultan Foundation for Peace and Development with support from EU-UN Spotlight Initiative and UN Women, has flagged off a sensitization workshop on gender and social norms for students of selected schools in Sokoto state.
Flagging off the one day workshop at the Government Girls College (GGC), Sokoto, the Programme Officer of Sultan Foundation for Peace and Development, Malam Musa Muhammad Galadanci, stated that the sensitization will also be extended to Tertiary institutions across the state.
Addressing the participants at the workshop, the facilitator, Barrister Rashidat Muhammed said individual sensitization is the greatest weapon for preventing GBV.
Barrister Rashidat, who admonished participants to constructively engage themselves as community influencers, peer review coaches and advocates of sound morals, stressed that with sound education, they can propagate the campaign against all forms of GBV in their respective societies.
Rashidat also appealed to girls to strive towards becoming assets than liabilities, to help concretize their matrimonial bliss.
“Gone are the days when people used to think that the man (husband) must provide everything needed in the house. Women are supposed to play their part now for a continued harmonious relationship. However, the big question is how do you play your part when you are not educated and have nothing doing?
While noting that discrimination based on gender are some of the harmful cultural practices that should be stopped, Barrister Rashidat added that parents and the society should treat human beings equally.
Earlier in her remarks, the Principal of GGC, Dr Fatima Binta Musa, represented by her Vice, Fatima Abubakar Gobir, said most parents in Sokoto now want their children to be educated. She added, however, that the children on their part have to be obedient, respectful, focused, determined and goal oriented.
On his part, the District Head of Gagi, Sarkin Yakin Gagi, Sani Umar Jabbi appealed to students to desist from negative norms which according to him have been hindering many from attaining positive goals.
Jabbi, an outspoken traditional leader, also hinted that women education helps in mitigating the effects of poverty.
While noting that shortage of female medical personnel is one of the major reasons for maternal mortality in Sokoto state, since their women prefer being attended to by fellow women than men, he stressed the need for more women to be trained in the medical sciences.
He equally urged the girl child to be respectful to their parents as the first step towards encouraging the parents to ensure that their education is assured.
One of the participants, Asmau Umar Muhammad, an SSS 2 student, said what she learnt was that girls have been deprived of their rights on so many occasions and vowed to become an advocate for girl child education and prohibition of Gender Based Violence (GBV).
Another student, Firdaus Yakubu Idris said she has learnt from the workshop that respect for ones parents could lead to unconditional love and care.