A Non-governmental Agency (NGO), the Lisa Demi Project (LDP), on Wednesday decried the increasing rate of sexual abuse and assault in Nigeria, describing it as alarming and called for urgent action to address it.
The Initiator, Demilade Yusuf, called for the action at news conference at the Teslim Balogun Stadium, Surulere, Lagos, to usher in a one-day programme “Titled Let’s Talk About Our Sexual Health’’.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Lisa Demi Project seeks to get the attention of the public to address the sexual health issues through Talks, Counselling, Entertainment and others.
She said that the programme which would be held on Thursday was to sensitise the public on the rising number of young people on drugs and the emotional torture attached to rape.
“A critical aspect of our lives in this present day is the alarming rate and figure of rape and other sexual victims in the society. It calls for urgent action.
“More disturbing, however, is the behaviour of the victims, the perpetrators and the society; there is no doubt, a great need to tackle these menaces to secure the future.
“According to the former Commissioner of Police, Lagos State, Fatai Owoseni, alarming statistics have revealed that a total of 162 rape cases were recorded in Lagos State in 2016’’.
“The above cases as it were are those that were recorded because we all know the stigmatisation that is attached to rape in this part of the world,’’ she said.
Yusuf said the major factor militating against the campaign against the dastardly act of sexual abuses was inadequate public awareness and sensitisation which she sought to address.
“Across Africa, sexuality is one area of our daily life that is shrouded in more mystery than necessary in modern times.
“What would this have done in the face of social media networks we have today with the ever improving information communications network platforms?
“Most children, teenagers and youths are often exposed to the issues of sexuality by wrong the medium, of course, with damming and life threatening consequences.
“The major detrimental fallout of this shortfall is an increase in poor sexual health, signpost by the stunning statistics of sexually unhealthy people with increasing Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs),’’ she said.
Yusuf told NAN after the news conference that though she did not have a personal experience of sexual abuse, she was moved by the fact that there was an increasing rate.
“I personally don’t have such experience but I am miffed by the alarming rate of the abuse prevalent in the society today, I think it must be checked.
“We will have the support of all in achieving this, from the parents who we want to counsel on how they can handle sexual abuse to the security personnel and also the government.
“We have partnerships with the Lagos State Government on this and they will be on ground to address some of the issues that will be raised at the event tomorrow (Dec. 14).
“We also want to target teenagers between the ages of 14-24. They will form the nucleus of those that will take the advocacy to the rest of the world,’’ she said.
NAN reports that the programme will take place at the Molade Okoya Indoor Sports Hall, Teslim Balogun Stadium, Surulere, Lagos.