The Nigeria Association of Women Journalists (NAWOJ), Delta state chapter in collaboration with other professional groups on Thursday, stood against rape in the society.
The group in its address to the public, described rape as a cancerous pandemic, eating through the foundation of the society and creating an unsafe environment for all.
The state Chairman of the Nigeria Association of Women Journalists, NAWOJ, Comrade Pat Gbemudu stated this during a stand up campaign tagged: “Stand wgainst rape and other Gender Based Violence.”
The event was organized by the state chapter of NAWOJ in partnership with civil society organizations and Medical Women Association of Nigeria (MWAN) in the state.
The various groups involved in the ‘Stand wgainst rape’ campaign include the Nigeria Association of Women Journalists (NAWOJ), Medical Women Association of Nigeria (MWAN), International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA), Association Against Child Sexual and Gender Based Violence, Ideal Child Foundation, Courageous Girls and Women Initiative, Working Fingers and Soroptomist International.
They gathered at the Interbau Roundabout, Asaba, dressed in apron strings and carrying placards bearing various inscriptions, such as “Stop rape now”; “No means no”; “Leave me alone”; “Say no to rape”; “Rape is a crime”; “Stop killing our girls”; “Say no to child molestation”; “Don’t wait to be a victim” and “No to sexual violence.”
Their dressing and chants caught the attention of passers-by and commuters, most of whom slowed down to read the messages on the various placards.
In her remarks, Comrade Pat Gbemudu called for the domestication of the Violence Against Persons Prohibition Act in Delta state.
She added that stricter punishments should be meted out to rapists to serve as deterrent to other criminally minded persons.
The state NAWOJ chairman said proper parenting was key in the fight against rape and urged parents to groom both the boys and girls into responsible and supportive citizens.
Comrade Gbemudu advocated that rapists should be blamed, shamed and punished, and not the victims.
Leaders of the various civil society groups and women associations present, said that the campaign had become necessary given the increasing spate at which minors and adults, including boys and girls, were being raped in different parts of the country.