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Tinubu, others celebrate UN Day for Girl Child Protection

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First Lady Oluremi Tinubu joined Sierra Leone and Angola counterparts Dr Fatima Bio and Dr Anas Lorenco to celebrate the first anniversary of UN World Day for the Protection of Girls.

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Winners Chapel International in Freetown, Sierra Leone, hosted the celebration to prevent and cure child sexual exploitation, abuse, and violence, according to NAN.

Tinubu said a nation’s soul is assessed by how it treats its children.

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She said using a day to examine the threat emphasizes the harm it does to girls.

She said: “It is an alarm call for all nations to end such abuse because it tarnishes humanity.

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“We must ensure that every child grows up in a safe, nurturing, and harm-free environment.

Supporting survivors in their rehabilitation from abuse trauma is crucial. Abuse wounds are profound, but resources, treatment, love, and support can help survivors recover.

“We must help them heal and rebuild their lives; their stories are not just pain but resilience, hope, courage, and triumph.

In her presentation, Lorenco stressed that all African nations must work together to offer survivors a voice and a new life.

“The story is the same everywhere, but as mothers and concerned people, we support survivors,” she said.

Justice Desmond Babatunde, Sierra Leone’s Chief Judge, assured the women that the judiciary will prosecute any abusers.

“There cannot be healing without justice,” she said.

The first ladies of Sierra Leone, Nigeria, and Angola gave 130 survivors scholarships after hearing their stories, according to NAN.

Universities, vocational training, start-up business capital, and other categories receive Le100,000,000 (N4 million) scholarships.

One in four girls and one in nine boys have been sexually exploited, molested, or violated.

Last year, the UN established November 18 World Day to prevent and heal from child sex exploitation, abuse, and violence.

The 2021 Sierra Leone-Nigeria day has successfully educated and sparked action to reduce the societal scourge.

Church leaders including the host church’s National Resident Pastor, Moses Olasunkanmi, and Catholic Archbishop Charles Tamba prayed for survivors’ healing.

Osinachi Kalu, also known as Sinach, Nigeria’s gospel music superstar, performed well on the day, according to NAN.

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