Rape is a societal ill ― Oyo Attorney-General

• Oyo agency receives 89 rape cases between June – November

The Attorney General (AG) and Commissioner for Justice in Oyo State, Professor Oyelowo Oyewo, on Monday stated that rape and sexual abuse is a societal ill that must be cured for any society to move on, adding that advocacy should focus more on prevention rather than cure though there must be purposeful response for victims.

The AG made the declaration while speaking during a meeting with members of the Oyo State Sexual and Gender-Based Violence Response Team (Oyo SGBVRT), led by Mrs Dupe Awosemusi in his office.

Prof. Oyewo explained that the home has a huge role to play in the fight against abuse and urged parents to stop leaving every responsibility to the government or the school, adding that sensitisation about effects of violence on education should be an intricate part of the advocacy against abuse while advocating for lessons on self-defence for female children.

According to him, internet adds to the rising incidences of sexual abuse of women through the proliferation of pornographic materials, emphasising that pornography in all its forms debase women and teach men that it is normal to abuse the female gender.

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The AG who called for a counter-narrative that will endear positive change emphasised the need to ensure that the Oyo SGBVRT is a statutory body to make its work more effective.

In her opening speech, Awosemusi had informed the AG that though the response team was inaugurated in May, it started work fully in June and since it started operations, it had received about 89 cases in conjunction with the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), adding that the rate of gender-based violence in the state is too high.

She explained that from experience, the incidence of violence against children and teenagers especially incest is continually on the rise and perpetrators get away and go scot-free possibly due to defects in investigations.

She explained that the Oyo SGBVRT is put together as a one-stop centre where victims can get treatment and justice without trauma or lasting negative effects.

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