NICO seeks review of cultural policy to curb rape cases


BRIDGETTE Yerima, the Director, National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO), has stressed the need to urgently revisit and review Nigeria’s Cultural Policy, 32 years after it was put in place.

Yerima, who oversees the Office of the Executive Secretary of NICO in a statement issued on Monday in Abuja, said it would help to address the rising cases of rape in the country.

According to her, updating and reviewing the policy is central to addressing the current problem of incessant rape cases and other social vices plaguing Nigeria.

She noted that Nigeria’s cultural policy, formulated in 1988, had become obsolete and needed to be re-appraised, rejigged, and updated to tackle emerging social issues, including rape, child molestation, and domestic violence.

She also emphasised the need to consider the methods adopted by some foreign countries in their resolve to curb incidences of rape.

She explained that Countries like India, China, North Korea and Saudi Arabia had instituted punishment options such as death, castration, beheading and death by firing squad.

Yerima called for policies in that direction as a means to curb the rising incidence of rape cases.

According to her, no punishment should be considered too harsh to protect minors, girls and old women.

She stressed the need for creative solutions to stem the rising cases of rape, child molestation and domestic violence in the country.

Nigeria, Africa’s most populous nation, is currently grappling with rape pandemic that has seen babies and geriatric citizens being raped by young men.

In a recent report, Dame Pauline Tallen, Nigeria’s Minister of Women Affairs and Social Development was quoted as saying that up to two million Nigerians are raped every year

“The rape cases involve illegal sexual acts and violence often leading to death; in most cases, the victims are females and children who are vulnerable and weak.

“These cases have become so rampant, prompting Nigeria’s parliament to call for a state of emergency to deal with the embarrassing crisis.”

Yerima urged parents and guardians to rise to the occasion by playing their required roles to stem the worsening tide of rape nationwide.

According to her, parents and guardians must resume their traditional responsibilities as parents, who must be on ground to guide, direct or instruct their children all the time.

“In recent times, due to the harsh economic situation, most parents have had to pick up jobs that take them away from home in order to make ends meet.

“While this is explainable, parents must learn the balancing act and avoid being absentee parents most times.”

Yerima suggested that at least one parent must be on ground at all times to not only supervise but also instruct kids.

According to her, a situation where parents transfer their roles and responsibilities to domestic help and caregivers or to teachers and neighbours is totally unacceptable.

She advised parents to ensure that their children dress decently at all times to avoid attracting the attention of marauding rapists. (NAN)

– Jun. 15, 2020 @ 14:35 GMT |

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