Statement By His Excellency Dr. Julius Maada Bio President Of The Republic Of Sierra Leone

The draft Resolution on Agenda Item 133 entitled International Cooperation on Access to Justice for Survivors of Sexual Violence will be adopted today at the United Nations General Assembly.The said resolution which was initiated by Sierra Leone and co-facilitated by the Permanent Missions of Sierra Leone and Japan to the United Nations, will serve as a global mechanism and collective commitment to ensuring access to justice, remedies and assistance as well as reproductive health and sexual rights for victims and survivors of sexual violence.Addressing the United Nations, during the General Debate of the high-level week of the 76 session of the General Assembly, His Excellency Dr. Julius Maada Bio, President of the Republic of Sierra Leone called for ‘global solidarity on access to justice and remedies for victims and survivors of sexual violence’.

It will be recalled that President Bio who has at the forefront to tackle the menace, declared rape as a national emergency, punishable by severe penalties during the first year of Presidency.In making the plea to his Peers, President Bio reaffirmed that he would direct His Permanent Representative to the United Nations, His Excellency Alhaji Fanday Turay ‘to sponsor a stand-alone resolution’ in the General Assembly on access to justice for survivors of sexual violence. At the national, the Government has not only enacted legislations but has gone the extra length to enforce the relevant laws as well as establishing institutional mechanisms to concretize the New Direction Administration’s resolve address impunity and protect women and girls against sexual violence and abuse.It is against the backdrop of the importance that His Excellency’s Government attaches to fighting this menace that H. E. Prof. David J Francis, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, is currently in New York to introduce the draft Resolution for adoption at the United Nations General Assembly.

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