Domestic violence against students by students in Nigeria has been dominant in various secondary and higher institutions. Everyone prays not to be a victim of a raging bully on the loss.
Numerous people still carry the scars of the pain they suffered in the hands of their oppressors growing up. The trauma has molded their current existence and self-esteem. For some, they couldn’t wait to enter senior secondary school, and others just sought different ways to escape. All in all the constant feeling of fear that comes with bullying remains with the oppressed for a long time that they sometimes become what they hate.
In some cases, the incident is covered up by the school and a light sentence is given to the culprit. In serious cases, the student is suspended or expelled and that’s where it ends. The students apply to another school and the vicious circle of inflicting pain on the next person continues.
The sad part about this is the enabling environment created for the abuser by people around. Questions like “what did you do ?” and statements like “you’re lucky he took it easy on you” are used to justify the bullies action. The victim is then made to feel bad for seeking justice as it was not “a big deal” after all.
Although there are limited research works done on the issue of domestic violence among school children. Almost everyone who has gone through an institution of learning has a story to tell about being bullied. This shows how rampant it is.
Recently, a video emerged online of five Federal University of Akure (FUTA) students who ganged up to beat a 100 level student.
In the video, a lady identified as Bolu was assaulted by four ladies and a male student described as a school father to one of the ladies.
The reason why they descended on her was not established in the clips, but one of the ladies could be heard accusing the victim of running her mouth.
The victim was asked to kneel down and after she refused, the ”school father” slapped her twice then removed his belt which he used to beat her. Another girl in the video grabbed a mop stick which she used to beat her, another used a broom and the other dragged her around the room.
The video caused an uproar on campus and students started looking for the culprit. Reports got to the school authorities and the Dean of Student, Professor G.E Onibi made a statement prone to the decision of the panel that ‘all culprits involved would in brutalization be expelled including the cameraman’.
Although this is a right step in getting justice for the victim, is it enough to curb bullying and domestic violence amongst students? Would these assaulters not continue their ways when they’re out on the streets outside school?
This is just a temporary solution to a long term problem.