About 40 selected personnel of the Domestic Violence and Victim’s Support Unit (DoVVSU) of the Ghana Police Service have begun a two-day data management training programme to enhance effective collection and analysis of data.

The participants are made up of a senior police officer, six officers of the Inspectorate Directorate rank as well as 30 men and women drawn from stations across the country.

Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) George Tweneboah, Deputy Director General of Criminal Investigations Directorate (CID), opening the session on Wednesday, called on personnel to create a conducive environment for victims to freely report their ordeals.

They should also collaborate with other stakeholders to provide a swift response to abuse victims, he told officers of the Unit.

DoVVSU, he said, is mandated to handle domestic violence issues, especially those against children and vulnerable adults adding that they should intensify their educational mandate, empower women and children with respect to their rights.

ACP Tweneboah praised them for being the source of credible information on statistics over the years on domestic violence and Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV) in Ghana, which also helps in responding to request from international community.

The Deputy Director General said it has provided a well-structured and easily accessible database that is readily shared with a click of a button.

Dr Robert Mensah, Assistant Representative of UNFPA, said the fourth principle of the International Conference on Population and Development Programme (ICPD) of Action, places emphasis on advancing gender equality and equity and the elimination of all kinds of violence against women.

The issue of SGBV management and prevention is at the heart of the UNFPA’s mandate and this year marking the 25th anniversary of the ICPD, provides the opportunity to recommit efforts in tackling the phenomenon nationwide.

He said UNFPA needs to know the nature and prevalence of SGBV so as to inform policy makers and assist the design and implementation of effective policies and stated that data collection and analysis were key in that regard.

It would make targeted service delivery, advocacy, policy development, accountability and monitoring effective, he said.

Dr Mensah said the DoVVSU Data Management System training with support from UNFPA started in 2016 to ensure that data on sexual and gender-based violence were properly and easily collected nationwide.

He commended the Unit for the success of the Programme adding that this session would be used to update the officers on a more standardised data collection tools.

They would be able to capture different data accurately with the widening of the system for a more sustained management of abuses as it would help in SGBV decision making and policies.

He reiterated UNFPA’s support for DoVVSU to reinforce SGBV prevention and response programming and make sure quality services were available for survivors.

It would help build the capacity of the officers for robust-based SGBV statistics.

Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Rose Haligah, the Deputy DoVVSU Coordinator, said with support from UNFPA, it is training personnel to generate statistical reports that meet international standards.

These reports are to be generated monthly to inform government agencies, Non-Governmental Organisations and individuals for academic and non-academic research, she said.

ASP Haligah said DoVVSU is obliged to generate reliable data that would receive trust and confidence of the public and commended UNFPA for its support.

Mr Senanu Agbozo, the Consultant for UNFPA, said the management system was for a central connectivity data system and called for logistics for personnel to enable them do their work on time.

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