The Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Moyosore Onigbanjo (SAN), made the disclosure while giving an account of the performance of DSVRT in commemoration of the Domestic and Sexual Violence Awareness month at Alausa, Ikeja.
Onigbanjo, who is also the Chairman of DSVRT, stated that there is a continuous need to prosecute perpetrators in the State to serve as a deterrent to would-be culprits because of the rising cases of domestic
and sexual violence as well as incessant child abuse in the country.
According to him, “Between May 2019 and August 2021, 4150 Domestic Violence, 177 Rape, 255 Attempted Rape/Sexual Assault, 246 Sexual Assault by penetration/threat, 436 Child Abuse/Physical Assault, 271 Defilement cases, 13 Defilement by Minor to Minor, 454 Child Labour, Abduction Neglect/Others and 148 Sexual Harassment/Molestation cases, among others, were handled, through the Domestic Violence and Sexual Response Team (DSVRT)”.
These were cases that were reported officially to the government, while some other cases might have not be reported.
The Commissioner added that since May 2019, the DSVRT has received about 150 new cases monthly, saying that the State also witnessed an increase in reporting of cases from other States, mostly from Ogun and Oyo State.
“In the past two years, a total of 526 cases occurred outside Lagos. Such cases were promptly referred to the relevant agencies in their respective States”, he noted
Onigbanjo also disclosed that a total of 2,980 children have experienced emotional abuse and have been taken through counselling programmes to ensure they fit into society without a negative psychological impact.
In his words, “The Lagos State Domestic and Sexual Violence Response Team, which was conceived in September 2014, is working in alignment with the T.H.E.M.E.S. Agenda of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu’s administration, particularly, the pillars of Health, Education, Security and Good Governance”.
“By virtue of the team’s various initiatives, as well as the zero-tolerance declared in the State, DSVRT has continued to see a steady increase of formal reportage of cases”, he averred.
The Commissioner submitted that the other notable achievements of the Ministry of Justice stem from the Directorate of Public Prosecution (DPP), which has secured over 365 convictions for various sexual offences, including rape, defilement, sexual assault by penetration and sexual assault.
He said in a bid to ensure that survivors/victims can access care at all levels, the team partnered with Ford Foundation in building the capacity of designated and pilot private hospitals located across the metropolis to provide sexual assault management services to survivors.
Onigbanjo added that the DSVRT has also partnered with various institutions, such as the Office of the Commissioner of Police, the Office of Education Quality Assurance, Lagos State Teaching Service Commission, Joint European Union Funded Spotlight Initiative and The King’s Club Project, amongst several others, to proffer better solutions to curb the menace and promote the awareness of Domestic and Sexual Violence in the State.
On the planned activities to commemorate the Domestic and Sexual Violence Awareness Month, the Chairman DSVRT, stated that the awareness programme would run for a month with the launch of #TeamAlausaPurpleCampaign
, a community engagement in Iba/Ipaja due to the high number of cases reported from the area.
He also mentioned that there will be a Safeguarding and Child Protection Day, which will be rounded up with a Commendation Night.