In a bid to address the pervasive issue of sexual-gender-based violence (SGBV) in Nigeria, the European Union (EU), in collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), recently premiered the film ‘Deafening Silence’ in Lagos.

This initiative is part of the larger Spotlight Initiative interventions targeting SGBV.

The movie, featuring prominent Nollywood actors such as Kate Henshaw, Bimbo Akintola, Chidi Mokeme, and Femi Jacobs, highlights critical issues like sexual harassment, child abuse, and the importance of raising boys to respect women. The EU Ambassador to Nigeria and ECOWAS, Samuela Isopi, represented by Ruben Alba Aguilera, Head of the Governance, Gender Human Rights and Migration Section at the EU Delegation, emphasized the importance of raising awareness and sparking debate on gender-based violence across Nigeria.

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“Our goal is to reach every corner of Nigeria, break the silence, and initiate discussions on the effects of gender-based violence, aiming for societal change,” Aguilera stated.

Launched in 2019, the Spotlight Initiative is the largest investment tool of the EU and UN for preventing SGBV.  Aguilera further revealed that over N1billion had been invested, resulting in the establishment of 41 Sexual Assault Referral Centres across 20 states in Nigeria and the creation of a special court for prosecuting offenders.

‘Deafening Silence’ aims to deliver its message to every Nigerian household, leveraging the influence of Nollywood to drive significant societal change.

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