Wole Balogun, Ado Ekiti
Residents and indigenes of Ekiti State have lauded the state government for taking steps to enact stringent laws that would deal ruthlessly with persons found guilty of raping minors and adults.
A few weeks ago, the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Wale Fapounda, stated that as part of the efforts to tackle rapists and child abusers, government would conduct compulsory psychiatric test and publish names and photographs of offenders on the website of the ministry.
He added that names of such offenders would also be announced on the state radio and television, while the monarch of the town he hailed from would be alerted for them to get information about his personality. He expressed worries that the incidents of rape kept increasing in spite of high number of convictions recorded. He claimed that Governor Kayode Fayemi was miffed by cases of sexual violence and that there was need for proactive actions to nip the situation in the bud:
“Photographs of convicted offenders will be pasted in prominent public spaces in their communities and their local government headquarters. Compulsory psychiatric test for all persons of whom the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) has issued a case to answer legal advice for the offence of child defilement. This also includes persons standing trials.”
The commissioner clarified that government would take actions that would deprive offenders of their rights to dignity: “Government is aware that conviction alone will not solve the problem. Public education and awareness will be stepped up to sensitise the populace.”
Mr. Osho Oluwamayowa, a businessman, reacted: “The development is a good one. How can we live in a society where one cannot leave his/her ward with his/her neighbour? It is not written in the forehead that so and so person can do such act. Whenever such act is being perpetrated, you hear, ‘it is the work of the devil’.
“I urge other states too to embrace such. The paedophiles seem rampant these days, while rapist will tell you it is because of their dressings, claiming it is provocative. So, the law on rape in Ekiti is a very good one.”
Adeniyi Adekunle, lecturer: “It is a welcome development because many youths no longer see it as a crime anymore, but a pleasure. Checking the psyche of that person to see if the person is balanced or not is good.
“The culprit’s picture to be published on the website, I don’t subscribe to it. How many people have access to websites? How many people will know such perpetrators? Except for those who are members of his family or are also close such person. I suggest a stiffer penalty instead, because most of the things we see on social media are junks and an innocent person could be blackmailed in this regard.”
Dr. Bisola Sehinde, lecturer at the Ekiti State University, Ado-Ekiti, said: “It is a good idea as will put the government on the know as to whether the perpetrator is sane or not. The picture will bring them to the fore and will enable people in the society to pass comments.”
Apostle Adebayo Romiluyi: “The law is a good one as will help in reducing such in the society. If after a successful test, the government will be able to know its next line if action. I really subscribe to the development.”
A student, Funmi Panamo, said: “The law is a good one as it will serve as deterrent to those who are nursing such act and will reduce same in the society.”