Ghana Medical Journal

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Experience of gender-based violence to students in public and private secondary schools in Ilorin, Nigeria

Olufunmilayo I. Fawole, Olubunmi D. Balogun, Oladipupo Olaleye


Objective: To determine and compare prevalence of Gender based Violence (GBV) in public and private secondary schools students and to identify factors associated with experience of GBV by the students.

Design: Comparative cross-sectional survey of using a 60 item self-administered questionnaire.

Setting: Ten public and private secondary schools in Ilorin South Local Government area of Kwara State.

Participants: 640 students, (320 each) from public and private schools.

Main outcome variable: Prevalence and factors influencing experience of physical, sexual and psychological violence

Results: At least one form of GBV was experienced by 89.1% of public and 84.8% private schools students
(p=0.32). Psychological violence was commonest type of GBV experienced (Public -72.5% vs. Private - 69.2%;
p=0.37), while sexual violence was least (Public -41.4% vs. Private - 37.4%; p=0.3). Females were less likely to
experience physical violence (OR 0.3; 95% CI 0.2-0.4) and psychological violence (aOR 0.6; 95%CI 0.4-0.8). Students
who were in a relationship and who had history of parental violence were more likely to experience sexual
(aOR 1.7; 95%CI 1.2-2.4) and aOR 1.5; 95%CI 1.2-2.2) and psychological (aOR 1.3; 95%CI 1.1-1.5 and aOR 1.3;
95%CI respectively) violence.

Conclusions: GBV was a common experience of students in both groups of schools. Multi-disciplinary interventions
emphasising ending physical and psychological violence among private school students and sexual violence in public school are recommended. Interventions that involve the parents, school authorities and students on nonviolence conflict resolution are urgently required. Parents and students who perpetrate violence should be referred for counselling.

Funding: Author funded

Keywords: Violence, Gender based violence, Violence exposure, Secondary School, Students
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