By Hamza Ibrahim Chinade.
As technology related violence against women online continues to hinder women’s desire to effectively benefit from the unlimited opportunities on the internet, the Center for Information Technology and Development (CITAD) has with support from Association for Progressive Communication (APC) conducted a research on the theme in order to scientifically and broadly understand the underlying issues on gender based violence against women online and eventually come up with findings that will help address the worrisome situation experienced by women. Previously, CITAD has carried out a similar research to find out factors that inhibit women from making use of the internet in northern Nigeria, that research led to the publication of a book titled “Internet for Men? The Digital Marginalization of Women in Northern Nigeria”. Gender Based Violence Against Women Online is becoming rampant and negatively impacting in the way women use the internet, therefore CITAD did a study, having generated and compiled data, the organization today held a validation meeting with different stakeholders in attendance to be able to polish and enrich the data.
Welcoming participants to the validation meeting, CITAD’s Executive Director who was represented by Training Coordinator Malam Ahmad Abdullahi Yakasai said promoting development through ICT is a cardinal principle of the organization, and gender violence against women remains a challenging situation that demand the attention of stakeholders at different levels in order to free women from shackles of online violence, he advised the participants to make tangible inputs on the research and join the campaign against violence against women online. Survey, Focus Group Discussion (FGD) and Desk Top research findings were presented by Maryam Ado Haruna, Hamza Ibrahim and Salmat Abdulwaheed respectively. Many concerns were raised by the participants and appeals made to different stakeholders, a participant Anas Ibrahim Abubakar advocates for the provision of special court to deal with gender based violence against women online. A communiqué reflecting the concerns and recommendations of the participants was released at the end of the validation meeting. The meeting was attended by academics, civil society groups, students associations, International Federation of Women Lawyers, National Association of Women Journalists, Kano state HISBAH Board, religious leaders, secondary school teachers, journalists and other women and youths groups.