Anambra State House of Assembly has passed a resolution, calling on the State Government to intensify efforts at the fight against rape and pedophiles in Anambra.
The House also, urged Government to ensure improved means of reabsorbing and reintegrating victims of rape and pedophiles back into the society.
The resolution was sequel to a motion sponsored by Mr Cater Nnamdi Umeh, representing Aguata 1 Constituency and seconded by Mr Paschal Agbodike, representing Ihiala 11 Constituency during plenary on Aug. 6.
The Speaker, Mr Uchenna Okafor, who presided over the plenary, had put up the motion while the lawmakers unanimously adopted it through a voice votes.
Mr Okafor, who described the motion as timely said: “it is timely because at present there is a National outcry on the effects of rape in our children, especially our females’’.
“The devastating effects, which our colleague, Mr Umeh said here; the physical and psychological trauma and social emotion, depression.
“And there are cases of people, who have committed suicide for rape; there are people who have, because of rape got their lives changed forever over their impression about life.
“There are people, who could not integrate into the society anymore, all because of rape.
“You see, all these things are what we have to look into. And I am happy that the entire federation is looking into it,’’ Speaker stressed.
According to Okafor, because nobody knows whose turn it will be tomorrow; it can be your sister, your daughter, your child or it can be anybody.
“So, we have to really intensified efforts and I appreciate most of the pressure groups, which have been agitating like the women groups, who have been going round the country demonstrating against it.
“Let’s all support that, so it’s a very wonderful motion and we will do all we can to stop this barbaric act,’’ Speaker assured.
Speaking on the motion, Mr Umeh expressed worries that rape was an act that hurt the victims physically, psychologically and sociologically.
“Victims of this act suffer depression, panic attack, self-blame, isolation, aggression, feeling of shame and suicide.
“The effects of sexual assault are more severe on the part of females as they are the major victims of the barbaric acts.
“Health problems, such as vaginal bleeding or infection, hyper active sexual disorder, unwanted pregnancy, vagina inflammation, HIV/AIDS and even death occur as a result of this act,’’ Mr Umeh added.
Umeh, Chairman, House Committee on Health noted that it was regrettable that the cases of rape and acts of pedophiles had become a daily occurrence.
He described it as: “a barbaric act against everyone; young or old, male or female, though it has a higher rate of occurrence among the females’’.
He emphasised that reports of rape and pedophiles had been on the increase and hitting the pages of dailies and social media.
“There are stories of how young children have sexually abused, molested and aspiring women made to face horrifying experiences,’’ Umeh bemoaned.
Umeh, however, expressed confidence that intensification of efforts in the fight against the menace and pedophiles like steady awareness on the media and locals; prevention of the acts and other creative measures.
The integration of the victims, he added, would ensure a thorough curbing of this raging menace within the shores of the society.
He recalled that many laws had been passed to curb the menace due to how dangerous and scary the act was on victims.
“Nigeria alone has four laws put in place to address the issue of sexual abuse against children and women. We have the Criminal Code, which is applicable within the South; the Penal Code in the North.’’
“Others are Violence against Persons Prohibition Act and the Child Right Acts, adopted in 2003.
“There are also imprisonment, castration, payment of fines, already suggested curative measures which can be fundamental punishments to offenders, but the welfare and future of the victims will equally be considered,’’ Umeh averred.