Obinna Odogwu, Awka
Market women in Anambra State have appealed to the governments at all levels to enact laws which stipulate death sentence for convicted rapists. They said that such laws would help to reduce the scourge in the country.
The female traders operating under the aegis of United Traders Association [UTA], a Non-Governmental Organisation, said that if the increasing rate of rape and defilement of children in the country was not checked with capital punishment, the ugly trend might continue.
National President of UTA, Mrs Nkiru Duru, who led the women in a peaceful demonstration to Anambra State House of Assembly, police command headquarters, Government House and others said that urgent actions need to be taken to curb the menace.
Duru lamented that victims of rape, their families and friends often suffer permanent social and psychological traumas that harm the entire social system.
“We market women as mothers want the governments at all levels and security agencies and other relevant authorities to take more proactive measures to end rape in Nigeria. We sincerely believe that stiffer punishments like death sentence will help to discourage and curb the menace,” Duru stated.
UTA Public Relations Officer, Mrs Nkiru Nwagbo, while soliciting for media support in the fight against rape and other forms of violence against women, urged men to join in the crusade with a view to reducing the menace.
Receiving the women at the state’s legislative complex, the Deputy Speaker, Paschal Agbodike, assured the women that the 7th Assembly would enact relevant laws to protect women and girls against rape and other gender based violence.
At the police command’s headquarters in Amawbia, police spokesman, SP Haruna Mohammed, who received the women on behalf of the Commissioner of Police, John Abang, said that police would continue to do the much it could to bring rape suspects to justice.
Abang called for more awareness campaign against rape saying that when people were informed about the menace and the best way to protect themselves, it could help to reduce the rate of its occurrence.
“This is why between January 2020 to date the command has recorded 20 cases of rape out of which 15 cases were charged to court and still on trial. 21 suspects arrested and 5 cases are under investigation,” Mohammed added.