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LASG simplifies laws on domestic, gender-based violence

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The Lagos State Government (LASG) has a simplified version of relevant laws on Sexual, Gender-Based Violence (SGBV).

Mrs. Titilola Vivour-Adeniyi, the Executive Secretary of Lagos State Domestic and Sexual Violence Agency (DSVA) made the announcement on the agency’s official Twitter handle on Tuesday.

Vivour-Adeniyi said the state government had declared zero tolerance for all forms of SGBV crimes by enacting laws and formulating policies geared toward preventing, providing, and supporting the survivors of SGBV.

“In a demonstration of the state government’s resolve to eradicate SGBV, the DSVA was established to ensure total eradication of the menace in the state.

“The relevant laws on domestic and sexual violence which include Protection Against Domestic Violence Law 2015, Criminals Law of Lagos State, 2015, and Domestic and Sexual Violence Agency Law, 2021, were simplified to provide a holistic response to the issue of SGBV.’

Vivour-Adeniyi said that the law among other things establishes the Lagos State DSVA and the sex offenders register.

“The purpose of the law is to protect survivors of SGBV from all forms of discrimination, and stigmatization and ensure that they have access to medical, legal, and counseling assistance.

“The law further provides for the Gender-based Violence desk in every local government in the state to enable people to report cases of SGBV.

“According to Section 2(3) of the DSVA Law, it encourages individuals such as a counselor, teacher, health service provider, police officer, social worker, NGOs, parent, and family member to file an application on behalf of a victim.

“A person who also has an interest in the well-being of the victim can also apply on behalf of the victim of SGBV.”

The DSVA law, Section 364 provides three years imprisonment for sexual harassment, and section 267 stipulates three years jail term for bestiality.

“Section 265 provides five years for engaging a person in sexual activity without consent.

“According to Sections 268-269, abducting a female with intention of having sexual intercourse with her is seven years but if the person is under 18 years, the penalty is 10 years imprisonment if found guilty,” she said.

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DSVA said the court was empowered to grant an order protecting the applicant and such order could be served on the abuser.

“The court can make different orders such as stopping the abuser from further committing domestic violence, prohibiting the abuser from enlisting the help of another person to commit such crime.

“Restraining the abuser from entering the residence shared with the complainant and entering the victim’s place of work and compelling a police officer to accompany the victim to a specific place, home to collect the personal property,” it said.

According to DSVA, the court can also grant certain maintenance orders which include; payment of children’s school fees, house fees, feeding, and monthly expenses.

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