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11.05.2005 Regional News

Project to stop violence against women lauded

By GNA

Wa, May 11, GNA - Non-governmental organisations that have embarked on campaigns to stop violence against women have been urged to use education and not legal issues as an essential tool in their advocacy programmes.

For these programmes to succeed, the elimination of ignorance should supersede all laws instituted to forestall such negative practices, Alhaji Wumbei Zakari, Board Chairman of Amasachina Self Help Association, said at Wa on Tuesday.

He was speaking at the Upper West regional launch of "Nkyinkyim" - a national campaign on violence against women and girls in the country. Amasachina and Associates in Development, both NGOs, with pilot studies in 15 communities in the country, started the three-year programme in 1997.

According to the two organisations the studies showed that violence against women and girls was real in those communities and by extension the society in general.

Alhaji Zakari said most people behaved violently towards women and children due to ignorance.

He said in advanced communities where the people were well educated, such behaviour was termed deliberate and the miscreant could be punished.

Alhaji Zakari advised NGOs operating particularly in the northern regions to use funds judiciously because the area was not endowed with financially resourceful citizens who could solely finance projects for their people.

District assemblies should also develop confidence in the NGOs and tap their expertise by involving them in programmes such as the management of micro-credits, he added.

Mr David Yakubu, the Regional Co-ordinating Director who launched the project, said a lot of women had grown to become timid because of the violence inflicted on them when they were growing up. He appealed to the initiators of the project to package their messages appropriately.

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