An Appraisal of the Legal Regime for Combating Domestic Violence in Nigeria

This paper appraised the legal regime aimed at combating domestic violence in Nigeria. This paper which adopted the doctrinal legal research style of writing, attempted to add to existing literature by defining the term domestic violence while analyzing primary and secondary sources of data. It discussed the legal framework on domestic violence as it presently exists in Nigeria, it looked at the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 and the Violence Against Persons (Prohibition) Act 2015. State
laws such as the Domestic Violence Laws of Lagos State 2007, Rivers State Abolition of Female Circumcision Law 2001, and the Rivers State Violence Against Person (Prohibition) Law 2020 were also analyzed. The paper brought to the fore the challenges confronting the enforcement of the laws against domestic violence in Nigeria. Such challenges include societal perception of domestic violence, fear by the victim of reprisal attack after reporting a case of abuse, and ignorance of the existence of anti-domestic violence laws. The paper suggested among others that shelters be created in each of the Local Governments Areas to accommodate victims of domestic violence till an undertaking of safety is gotten from their abusers. It also emphasized the need for the education and enlightenment of the general public about the severity of the crime of domestic violence. Another recommendation made was as to the establishment of a desk office with officers in each Police station in Nigeria to handle cases of domestic violence.