On Wednesday, transport workers in Kaduna State began the creation of bylaws aimed at reducing instances of sexual harassment and other forms of Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV) in transportation hubs. The groups involved include the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW), the Tricycle Riders and Owners Cooperative Society of Nigeria, the Tricycle and Wheel Riders Operators Multipurpose Cooperative, and the Tricycle Multipurpose Cooperative Society.
The Empowering Women for Excellence Initiative (EWEI), an NGO, is supporting the creation of these bylaws through its “We for Them” project, aimed at reducing sexual harassment in public places. During an SGBV awareness seminar in Kaduna, the State Secretary of NURTW, Mr. Hassan Ibrahim, stated that the union has included provisions for addressing SGBV in its constitution, but acknowledged that these provisions were not comprehensive enough to address all cases of sexual harassment and violence.
Mr. Ibrahim emphasized that developing the bylaws was necessary to address SGBV issues not covered in the union’s constitution. Mrs. Yohana Gaiya, Chairman of the Tricycle Riders and Owners Cooperative Society of Nigeria, added that the bylaws would strengthen the society’s response to SGBV incidents in their parks, enabling them to align their operations with the state’s existing laws regarding SGBV. Malam Isah Abdullahi, Secretary of the Tricycle and Wheel Riders Operators Multipurpose Cooperative stated that the creation of these bylaws would help keep members in line, ensuring comprehensive protection for commuters against harassment and clearly outlining sanctions for any member engaging in sexual harassment, including their spouse.
The State Coordinator of the Kaduna Civil Society SGBV Coalition, Bukola Ajao, praised the transport workers for taking action to reduce SGBV through the creation of documents, codes of conduct, and sanctions. Ajao, a legal professional, also expressed her intention to collaborate with EWEI to provide technical support for the completion of the bylaws. Earlier, EWEI’s Programme Officer for Gender, Mr. Mendie Jeremiah, noted that the “We for Them” project was supported by the African Women’s Development Fund. He added that the transport workers had already received training on the existing laws regarding SGBV in the state. Today’s session was organized for the transport workers to make recommendations for the bylaws aimed at addressing sexual harassment and gender-based violence in transportation hubs in Kaduna State.
According to Mr. Ibrahim, the bylaws will address the conduct of members both within and outside the parks, as well as the behavior of community members and traders who use the transportation hubs. The recommendations will align with the existing constitutions of NURTW and the tricycle riders group, the Violence Against Persons Prohibition Law, and other relevant laws and policies in Kaduna State.
Source: Vanguard News