From: Bianca Iboma
Lagos State Commissioner for Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, Mrs. Lola Akande, has lauded the efforts of some non-governmenntal organisations (NGOs), civil society and concerned individuals, who stormed Governor Akinwunmi Ambode’s office protesting the rape of babies.
Akande, who spoke on behalf of the governor, said the state government was doing everything possible to stem the tide through its security trust fund scheme, working in tandem with the ministries of Justice, Education, Youths Sports and Social Development and Women Affairs.
She also said cases of rape and defilement were on the increase and needed concerted effort to tackle the situation.
Her words, “It is an epidemic that we all need to deal with, sad enough it is spreading so wide and needs urgent attention,”she said.
She also called on parents to train their children properly and ensure they were protected from any form of domestic violence, adding that stiffer punishment would be meted to culprits while justice would be given to the victims.
Also, convener of Live Abundantly Initiative, Dr. Ama Onyerinma, urged that children should be protected from any form of violence.
According to her, “The culture of silence has made rape cases prevalent and urged government to stand in defence of the children, especially where their parents could not speak for them.”
Onyerinma added that the culture of silence has made rape cases prevalent, saying that it has prevented justice. She, therefore, urged governments to stand up to protect the young ones especially in scenarios where their parents could not speak for them.
Onyerinma also said things must change and that governments at all levels must do a lot to stop and curb the menace.
Her words “The society must stand against it. We have to educate our children and equally educate the parents. The culture of silence has not really help the situation. It has prevented a lot of justice.It has not serve us.Whether the family wants it prosecuted or not the culprit must be brought before the law.
“They treat rape as a family matter.It should be a government as a government matter. That is why the government must take of the situation. Parents should speak up for their children who cannot speak.the government need to stand up for children who are victims of rape cases and prevent the persistence of such abuse.
“Most of the time parents neglect their kids because of the quest for material wealth leaving their children at the mercy of domestic staff and relatives who take advantage of them” she said.
Onyerinma also stressed that one out of every four girls are victims of abuse by blood relations not strangers, saying that the damage created by domestic violence and rape cases is ripping our children of their future.