From Ahmed Kaigama, Bauchi
A University lecturer with the Department of Software Engineering Bayero University Kano, Sanah Abdullahi Muaz, has called for on the general public and government at all levels to rise against online violence against women.
She made the call in Bauchi during a 2-day Internet Safety and Security Training of Trainers for Women organized by Centre for Information Technology and Development (CITAD) with support from Association for Progressive Communication, lamenting over increase rate of violence against women online.
She said: “We need to see this as a larger barrier for women and girls in exercising the full range of their human rights because the use of internet and its facilities for every woman across the globe is inevitable.”
“We must demand a better internet where every women can make their voices heard free from violence. And this will require action and cooperation from governments, companies, and of course individuals.”
She however charged government to implement policies that are based on the actual and current harms that women face online.
Muaz said addressing online violence against women requires collective efforts from individuals, corporations, and governments,noting that online harassment and cyber bullying were real and happening day in and day out especially to women.
“A woman’s inability to feel safe online is a great barrier to her freedom, as well as to her basic human rights.The problem of online violence and harassment is often overlooked in discussions of violence against women. Achieving online safety for women takes multiple, concerted strategies by different actors. Social media companies need to take proactive steps to ensure their space does not enable these acts”.
Also speaking, the Executive Director of CITAD, Yunusa Zakari Ya’u, said Internet had created a new regime of rights that citizens had to demand for adding that such right as to privacy, family, etc, can easily be derogated if certain principles are adhered with respect to how people access and use the internet.
He charged women to always be cautious while acceding internet and avoid sites that could harmful to their privacy.
The participants were trained on different internet safety tools which includes malware and viruses, safe browsing, basic safety tools, safe mobiles, privacy issues among others.