Jos has been enmeshed in crisis.
The Plateau State Government has advocated for special consideration for trauma healing among widows, orphans and children at the ongoing trauma healing training for heads of Non-Governmental Organisation’s, NGO’s, in the state.
The training is sponsored by the European Union through Apurimac Onlusin Nigeria; and two other non-governmental organizations serving as project coordinators.
The Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Development, Olivia Dazymem, who represented governor Jonah Jang at the event on Wednesday, made the appeal at the opening ceremony of the three-day workshop holding in Jos, where forty four NGO’s and civil society groups are being trained on how to handle trauma during crisis.
She said, “Women and children are always at the receiving end in violence, the girl child is the most vulnerable, therefore, they should be given special consideration in this trauma healing program such as these.”
She expressed deep concerns that the Plateau crisis has sent many young girls, especially those whose parents died in the crisis, into prostitution in a bid to make ends meet. She assured the organisers of government’s full support in taking the program to rural areas, particularly in areas that the crisis seem not to be abating.
According to her, the prolonged unrest in the state has created untold hardship, increasing poverty among citizens of the state.
The country representative of Apurimac, who is the project director of the training workshop, Godwin Okoko, while addressing participants, said the program is aimed at creating awareness to NGO’s and the civil societies on the negative effect of trauma during unrest.
He disclosed that the program targets Riyom, Barkinladi, Jos North and South, which he said are the four crisis prone council areas in the state.
Mr. Okoko challenged participants to use the skill acquired to strategise on how to bring relief to those who have been affected in the crisis, and are still living fresh with negative memories of the crisis.
One of the participants representing Miyetti Allah cattle breeders association, who is the state secretary of the association, Nuru Mohammed, described the program as “useful and timely;” pointing out that members of his community, who are Fulani headsmen, desire to be healed from the trauma they have gone through since the Plateau riot broke out about 13 years ago.
“My people are being persecuted unnecessarily. The Beroms are against us, the Chalas of Bokkos are fighting us, the Tarok in Langtang and Wase have been killing our people without just cause, the Gemai people in Shendam are also hunting Fulani’s, you can see why the Fulani’s should be healed from this trauma process,” he said.
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