The SGBV Crimes Unit at the Ministry of Justice recently ended a one week workshop for 80 criminal justice personnel, including health workers, traditional leaders and community members in Zwedru, Grand Gedeh County.
Mrs. Linda Barrolle Saygbe, training and outreach coordinator of the Sexual Gender Based Violence (SGBV) Crimes Unit said the detachment is established at the various regional security hubs across the country to supervise and ensure that victims have access to justice.
Mrs. Saygbe added that rape is a serious problem in the country; therefore it is important for criminal justice personnel and health workers to improve their interview techniques to be able to obtain statements and gather sufficient evidence from survivors to ensure effective prosecution.
She said targeted groups at the workshop are SGBV prosecutors, county attorneys, health workers, women and child protection section of the Liberia National Police, investigators, victim support officers, case liaison officers, SGBV nurses, and traditional and community leaders from the various counties.
According to Mrs. Saygbe, the workshop provided skills in interviewing child witnesses as well as making the participants able to prepare police charge sheets.
Meanwhile, the director of the SGBV Crimes Unit, Cllr. John A. A. Gabriel, assured that justice staff and health workers in Zwedru are equipped to support the unit in its fight against violators.
He called on the participants to be more proactive in the fight against sexual gender based violence in their various communities, noting that rape cases should not be settled without the involvement of the unit.
The workshop was held under the theme: “Improving investigation and prosecution of SGBV cases through community involvement.” It was sponsored by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP).