Foundation calls for mainstreaming of gender in police operations, 2020 Act

The Cleen Foundation, a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) has called for mainstreaming of gender equality principles into the Police Act, 2020 to ensure gender equality in police operations.

Mrs Chiemezie Atama, the foundation’s consultant said this at a workshop with the theme: Police Reform; Advocacy on Police Regulation and Validation in Abuja on Thursday.

“It has been noted that the values of fairness, justice and equity can only be achieved if gender equality principles and measures aimed at eliminating discrimination against women are appropriately mainstreamed into the police act.

“The successful implementation of the Police Act, 2020 requires a robust gender sensitive police regulation which would drive its implementation.

“It is against this backdrop that we embarked on a critical review of the legal framework on policing with a view to highlight provisions that the police should comply with for inclusion.

“Although the constitution provides for equality in treatment for persons regardless of gender and guarantees rights to dignity, discrimination against women in the police still occurs at different levels,’’ she said.

She said that women were still being discriminated against in the police in the areas of recruitment, training, duties and posting, marriage, dressing and language.

She said that the practices against women were still being perpetuated largely due to certain discriminatory provisions in the police regulation that were long overdue for review.

Atama said the provisions banning married women from enlisting and dismissal of unmarried pregnant women from the police should be expunged from the act.

Others she said were strict regulation of women when, how and who a police woman should marry and the limited range of duties for police women; should also be removed or changed.

She recommended the inclusion of a special gender unit to the regulation 25 and ensured its functionality, to mainstream gender into the police training courses, use gender sensitive languages, among others.

Mr Gad Peter, the Executive Director of the foundation, said that the event was organised to push for a police force that was effective and efficient and operated within the human rights centric framework.

“We want police officers that will not only safeguard the rights and dignity of our citizens but also enhance public trust and confidence in our institution and where the police would truly be our friends,’’ he said. (NAN)

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