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Tuesday, September 4, 2018

‘Death for rapists’

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No fewer than 3,000 youths have staged a walk campaigning against rape, gender-based violence and other social vices in Ilorin, the Kwara state capital.


The walk against rape and gender-based violence took off from the Kwara State Stadium complex through major streets of Ilorin metropolis and terminated at the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) secretariat along Offa Road.

Third in its series in the last three years, it featured celebrities like the veteran comedian Gbenga Adeyinka, Nollyhood artiste Yomi Fabiyi And lots of other Kwara-based celebrities.

The campaign was put together by a non-governmental organisation (NGO), SAAB Foundation. Founder of the NGO, Miss Saadat Bibire,said the campaign was motivated by the need to create awareness in the public to kick against the menace of rape and gender based intimidation.

Miss Bibire described rape as a criminal offence that should be meted with commensurate punishment which is death.

In the alternative, she recommended the castration of anybody found to culpable of raping.

She said: “We need to make somebody a scapegoat. I always make reference to Saudi Arabia. In that country if you rape somebody it is death sentence. That is why they don’t indulge in rape over there, but in Nigeria rape is a bailable offence. Rape equals murder. A murderer knows he will be killed, so rapists should be killed. If there is a scapegoat, there will be a reduction in the level of rape cases in the country. In the alternative to death sentence for rapist, the rapist can be castrated to serve as deterrent to others.

“Violence should also be taken more seriously. Kudos to Lagos and Kwara state governments for trying to make sure rape cases are not so rampant in their domains. In as much as that some bad eggs still exists to dwarf their efforts.

There should be a strict law that actually scares people away from committing rape in the society.

“Sadly, the society makes it difficult for victims to speak up because if you speak up, they stigmatise you. It is the stigmatization that is making the victims to speak up. Which is very bad, it is not their fault. This is why we have very low reportage in rape cases. They ask you questions like what were you wearing. Or where were you going to?

I am a citizen of Nigeria I can go anywhere I like. I have my freedom of movement etc. “Therefore, I calling of the Federal Government to review and strengthen the rape cases law. Personally, they reviewed the violence against women law recently, but they still have done the needful.

There is a line that says that to prove rape, there must be an eyewitness. That is totally wrong. That line should be expunged.

“The 3rd annual rally and seminar is to campaign against gender based violence, such as rape, domestic violence, child abuse and mutilation. We are also standing to fight for the right of women in the society.”

She added that her foundation pans to provide healing and support for victims of rape and further engage teens and youths in preventive and anti-rape programs and ensuring that adequate punishment is meted against perpetrators. Speaking with The Nation Senior Special Assistant (SSA) to Kwara State Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed on Youth, Babatunde Saka said rape cases had been on the increase.

Saka said: “Rape of course, it is increasing. It is not limited to this part of the world. It has equally been seen that the level of advocacy has to go up.

“I strongly feel, that part of what government can do is to improve in the area of sensitization of especially of the culprits which most of the time are men. Government needs to consciously sensitise people about the effects and implications of such criminality, because it is a crime against humanity and a crime against every nation.

“The society as we have it today still stigmatizes against raped victims, but to me should not be an excuse for its continued prevalence and any lady that has been unduly taken advantage of the law is there as par what such a victim can do.

“Going forward I want to urged ladies to be more decent in their appearance, though that should not be an excuse, but it is part of the reasons why this thing happens. Ladies should not be misread by the criminals through their appearance. Ladies should ensure not to move alone especially in odd hours.”

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