UNFPA says Adamawa forensic lab is the first in Nigeria – The Eagle Online

The Adamawa Forensic Lab is the first of its kind dedicated to gender-based violence (GBV) cases by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the EU-UN Spotlight Initiative.

UNFPA Country Representative Ulla Mueller said this Thursday during a two-day stakeholder validation workshop on forensic capacity assessment in Yola, the capital.

Mueller, who was represented by Chris Sabum, UNFPA’s humanitarian coordinator and head of the Fund’s sub-office in Maiduguri, said the forensic lab would help accelerate access to justice for GBV survivors. .

She urged stakeholders to identify gaps and see how to address issues in improving services in the area of ​​access to justice regarding GBV cases.

She said that many states in Nigeria and countries in West and Central Africa look up to Adamawa as an example to strengthen the criminal justice system in addressing GBV issues.

Dr. Kizzie Shako, an international forensic expert, said one of the objectives of the stakeholder validation workshop is to determine human resource capacity for forensic cases.

Shako added that the workshop should also assess the infrastructure capacity available by different stakeholders and identify strengths and weaknesses, as well as opportunities for intervention within the existing framework and provide recommendations for consideration.

She explained that “forensics is the application of science in cases where violence occurs in the collection of evidence to present in court as an expert witness.”

She therefore urged workshop participants to appreciate the role of forensic pathology and forensic science in addressing GBV to secure convictions and protect communities from further violence.

Dr. Danladi Idrissa, UNFPA program manager in Adamaoua, said the state had recorded more than 4,000 cases of rape from 2017 to date, and only 10% of reported cases had been the subject of prosecution, and without significant conviction.

Saso Ali, Permanent Secretary of the Adamawa Ministry of Women’s Affairs, appreciated UNFPA’s intervention to address the issue of GBV in the state.

She said perpetrators of gender-based violence have so far been exempt from scouting, but believed that with the forensic lab things would change as many convictions would be recorded.

Key stakeholders including Commissioner for Women’s Affairs, Commander of NSCDC, Deputy Commissioner of Police CID, Permanent Secretaries of Ministries of Women’s Affairs, Justice, Health and Planning, organizations of civil society and IFAD participated in the workshop.

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