According to the sexual violence research initiative, Sexual violence is defined as: “any sexual act, attempt to obtain a sexual act, unwanted sexual comments or advances, or acts to traffic, or otherwise directed, against a person’s sexuality using coercion, by any person regardless of their relationship to the victim, in any setting, including but not limited to home and work”.
Earlier this year, A state of emergency on Rape was declared in all 36 states in Nigeria, following the rise in rape case some of which were so violent that they resulted in the death of the victims. This has led to a national out cry across calling for justice for all victims and the denouncement and prosecution of all perpetrators.
The Nigerian Senate, on July 7, 2020, passed the Sexual Harassment Bill to safeguard students of tertiary institutions across the federation.
The bill was sponsored by deputy senate president, Ovie Omo-Agege.
The bill is titled ‘A Bill for an Act to prevent, prohibit and redress Sexual Harassment of students in tertiary educational institutions and for matters concerned therewith, 2019’,
The bill also proposes up to 14 years jail term with a minimum of 5 years without any option of fine for offenders.
This legislation is meant to address the incidence of sexual harassment in tertiary institutions only, as there are other laws that address sexual offences in respect of persons under the age of 18 years such as the Child Rights Act 2003. This fact was clarified by an Ekiti state legislator.
Organisations, Individuals and the government alike have collaborated to see to it that sexual violence is stopped on in the country and offenders are brought to justice.
The ongoing war against sexual violence is supported by various organizations across the nation. You can click here to read our article on organisations that work against sexual violence in Nigeria.
Sources: Guardian, Premium Times