The Awyetu sexual assault referral centre (SARC) was opened at the Bwari General Hospital in Abuja - the first SARC in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT). The SARC was established with funding from the Rule of Law and Anti-Corruption (RoLAC) Programme.
The Awyetu SARC will serve as a one-stop centre where survivors of sexual assault can receive immediate emergency medical treatment, counselling and follow up support services - free of charge. Survivors will also be provided with medical reports by SARC staff who have been trained in forensic medical examination and documentation. The reports are expected to play a key role in supporting the prosecution of rape cases in court.
The establishment of Awyetu brings the total number of SARCs in Nigeria to 29 (across the 17 states and the FCT). Between July 2013 and September 2020, the SARCs have assisted over 15,000 victims of sexual assault, over 70 per cent of whom, are under the age of 18 years.
‘SGBV is creating underdevelopment, negatively affecting cohesion, the ability to contribute to society, and ultimately prevents society from thriving. The EU has committed significant resources in the fight against SGBV through technical and financial support to front line defenders.’
Clement Botillier, Head of Section, Democracy, Governance and Migration, EU Delegation to Nigeria and ECOWAS