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WikkiData: In 6 months, Bauchi Recorded 1,501 Domestic Violence Cases — Higher Than 352 Documented in 3 Years

At least 1,501 Sexual and Gender-based Violence (SGBV) cases were recorded in Bauchi State between January and June this year, a figure way higher than 352 cases recorded in three years.

Auwal Musa Muhammad, Bauchi State Commissioner of Police, revealed this year’s statistics while speaking at a one-day training on SGBV organized by the National Association of Women Journalists (NAWOJ), Bauchi State chapter.

The statistics he gave indicated that an average of not less than 250 SGBV cases were recorded monthly, while 8.3 cases were reported daily.

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The police boss assured that the command would actively collaborate with stakeholders in the state to tackle the menace of SGBV among vulnerable people.

In her remarks, Esther Patrick, the Gender Officer of the State Ministry of Women Affairs and Child Development, stated that the ministry had introduced a template for proper documentation of SGBV cases in the state.

BAUCHI RECORDED 352 CASES IN 3 YEARS

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Speaking at a forum earlier in September 2021, Ahmed Mohammed Wakil, spokesman for Bauchi Police Command revealed that 202 SGBV cases were recorded in 20 months.

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According to him, the police had in 2020, recorded 149 rape cases and other related offences and arrested, at least, 257 suspects in connection with the crimes.

“So far, only 53 cases were recorded in the state and 69 suspected offenders were arrested in connection with the cases this year alone,” Wakil had said. 

According to him, the command had set up an SGBV desk in all the Divisional Police headquarters as well as the four area commands in the state.

“We have also been able to enlighten the members of the public that a reported rape case becomes a case between the offender and the state, because it is a capital offence and unbailable,” he said. “That awareness creation was one of the main reasons we had a reduced number of cases in the state.”

WikkiTimes could not get a police report on the menace in the past year. But a not-for-profit organisation, Attah Sisters Helping Hands Foundation (ASHHF), said it recorded, at least, 150 cases of domestic violence in the state.

Comfort Attah, Executive Director of the organization, disclosed this during a monthly meeting of the Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV) management committee.

“The cases include 12 rapes, 60 domestic violence, 34 forceful marriage, 28 neglects that bring to the total of 150 cases across the state in 2022,” the organisation claimed.

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WikkiTimes understands that the most common types of SGBV suffered by victims are physical, sexual, emotional, psychological and socio-economic violence.

Gender-Based Violence is mainly believed to be committed against females. However, their male counterparts, oftentimes, suffer similar fates.

POLICE COULD NOT EXPLAIN THE SURGING CASES

When contacted, Wakil could not explain to WikkiTimes reasons for the surging cases of SGVB in the state.

WikkiTimes had in February reported that the Bauchi State government vowed to probe cases of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), forced marriage and other harmful traditional practices including heinous offences within 180 days.

Abubakar Mohammed, the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, disclosed this during a press briefing at the Press Centre where he equally announced that the state government has implemented the Violence Against Persons Prohibition (VAPP) law, Administration of Criminal Justice Law and Penal Code of the state.

The commissioner, while reiterating the 180 days trial benchmark, noted that issues of concealed rape cases would also be prosecuted.

“We now have elimination of delay,” Mohammed said. “No matter how weighty an offence is, you must conclude it within 180 days. Also, we now have a limited number of adjournments, which is five.”

To understand how the law had been taken seriously so far, WikkiTimes sent an enquiry to the police spokesman, asking for details of SGBV cases that had been mentioned in court within the last six months.

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We also asked the police what they think was responsible for the surging cases, but the spokesman responded with two published stories, corroborating the increase in the cases of SGBV.

The content of the stories, as seen here and here, Wakil said, were the stand of the Bauchi Police Command.

When WikkiTimes pressed further, Wakil said the paper should contact the person who rolled out the statistic as it did not emanate from him.

“Then call the person that confirms that numbers it was [sic] not emanated from me,” he responded.

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