AMAZING, incredible, bizarre, mind-boggling, unimaginable, stupendous, tyrannical, oppressive, inane, irritating are some apt words which would describe the increasing maladies of sexual abuse being reported in environments, climes and nations.
Examples abound, old maternal father paternal fathers having incestuous sexual relationships with their daughters, often times minors, baby factories springing daily in poverty ravaged countries that cannot manufacturing toothpicks into their industrial policies, pastors/spiritualists/ woe – leaders taking advantage of their female- customers seeking spiritual solutions, ritualists severing private parts of their sex victims. There are more dragged, fierce-looking, maniacal Boko-Haram insurgents taking over towns, villages and territories, seizing their innocent young girls and for several years subjecting them to serial sexual orgies unthinkable except towards casting pornographic videos.
Helpless grannies and widows being waylaid by cudgel wielding youths, aimed robbers and kidnappers invading homes mostly at nights subjecting wives and sleeping tired mothers of these homes to brazen sex in front of their husbands, sons and daughters.
Street hawkers are lured into uncompleted homes to buy what they are not willing to sell and lecturers taking advantage of desperate students seeking admission, seasonal academic promotions and teachers in crèche, nursery, primary and secondary schools sexually abusing their teens under them. Boundless to the geographical age, gender, class or professional limitations.
Though, the burden of guilt has rested unarguably and incontrovertibly more on the men folk, the feminine folk have regrettably being equally accused especially with provocatively seductive dresses in vogue among the female gender.
An Ex-President of a foremost advanced country was sometimes ago found guilty of sexual immorality and many stars, respected icons and leading figures in the world could not and cannot absolve themselves. There is more to sex than the sense or literature could fathom.
The human psychology and physiology of victims are negatively affected sometimes for life. Many had caught STDs, HIVs, AIDs and other sexually transmitted diseases as a result of being sexually abused. Many abused minors never trust anybody again as long as they live, later in life, become frigid in response to normal legal marital sex.
Many marriages suppose to be built on trust so destroyed irreparably, before commencement. Nations are not saved from bad governance when led by victims and offenders of sexual abuse. Global insurgency, crimes and wars are often championed, initiated and financed by victims of sexual abuse whose hopes for decent living had sometimes ago been traumatized, shattered or truncated by sexual abuse tyrannical experiences.
For victims not quickly rehabilitated, sexual abuse often serve as lead to other worse crimes in Eastern Nigeria, grandmothers and victims of sexual abuse were taking courses in Karate, boxing, wrestling to defend themselves in case of future attacks. Female undergraduates take knives, scissors and harmful instruments along while studying in the campuses at nights, for self defence.
In all wars, defence is a key strategy.
However, many reasons had often been advanced as possible causes. Weak criminal prosecution system, parental neglect, poverty of the pocket, soul and mind, unemployment, deficit socio-structures and value system- exemplified in dressings, insurgency, herbal medicine abuse among others.
The emphasis of this generation is on money, making monkeys and mockeries of flawed religious messages. Lack of fear of God, in my opinion is quite central to the abnormality. I can’t figure it how a 90year old man would feel on the top of a 3year minor!
The world needs the help of a supreme being. Nigerians, my fellows are gross church goers and mass mosque devotees but the real virtues these religions preach are virtually untraceable in us, while this writer is not an adherent of the traditional religion but curiously when traditional worship dominated the African socio-cultural development, these wicked acts of humans against humans in flagrant sexual abuses were not common place.
We must move forward, not backward. A sane mind would think of ways forward. More enlightenment activities for potential victims should be done through the media in schools, churches and mosques. There should be undercover agents in communities to protect potential victims, NGO’s, foundations and civil society organizations set up to help victims should move nearer to the grassroots, perhaps to be in all the 774 local governments in say, Nigeria.
Since they are usually more effective in prosecuting offenders, accessibility to them in various local communities would expedite the prosecution process. There should be speedy review of the criminal prosecution system relating to sexual offences.
It denigrates humanity; more severe punishment for offenders would serve as deterrents. Arguably, Indonesia, Saudi, Arab, UAE and many of these organizations of Islamic countries operating strict moral and Islamic based laws have low reported cases of rape and other sexual abuse or related offences. As a nation, we can emulate these countries in this area to reduce this heinous crime. Offenders should be blacklisted from certain responsibilities; where valid cases are established, such offenders should be blamed from teaching appointments or working in areas where minors or the female gender dominate.
Intelligent reporting before crimes are committed should be encouraged. There should be society intelligence officers who should be empowered to investigate potential rape or prospective sexual abuse cases and perform surveillance on likely predators before they have opportunities to commit these crimes. Our girls must be protected and offenders prosecuted.
Men folk who suffer sexual abuse should also be encouraged to report. It is unbelievable but it does happen that men fall victims to sexual abuse. Our campuses, organizations, institutions and homes should be cleared of sexually provocative dresses, films and attitudes censoring of local sales sexual stimulants, phonographic, absence and adult films would advance the save our girls from sexual abuse project.
Without doubts, sex stimulating films litter the film industry in Nigeria and this catalyst to sexual offence must be checked. The Nigeria Films Censors Board must be alive to its responsibilities.
Leadership of nations, especially in Africa must rise to tackling the hydra headed challenge of lack of access to education and poverties of unemployment which results in spiral negative effects including sexual abuses. It is far easier for an unemployed or frustrated jobless person to engage in drug abuse, negative peer influence, rape or sexual mismeanours than someone whose positive energy has been sapped under productive efforts, engagements and channeled towards a designed future.
As concerted efforts are beamed on vices such as sexual offences, there are greater tendencies for these vices to collapse under the weight of superior virtues, preached and practised in the pulpits, and among the pews. Fundamental human right of the girl child, minors and the feminine gender to say YES/NO to voluntary sex should not be trampled upon by the tyrannical dehumanization through sexual abuse. Wars of shed blood, cries of innocent helpless souls, wounded hearts, disaffected destinies should be avoided now and the future.
Apt to conclude with were the words of the former American President Truman, during the inauguration of the United Nations Chapter on Human Rights in 1949 that “regard for human rights is indispensable to political, economic and social progress….disregard of human rights is the beginning of tyranny and, too often, the beginning of war”.
Stop Sexual Abuse, Stop War!
By Dr. Ajibola Esuola.
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