IT is a vice, which could never have been imagined a few years ago. But now, it has become a “norm” in Opi community of Enugu State, where young men take delight in raping elderly women, some old enough to be their great-grand mothers.
The pains and agonies the victims go through in the hands of these rapists, dominated a meeting of stakeholders in women reproductive health and care for the aged in Enugu on Tuesday.
Participants at the South-East cluster meeting of Reproductive Health Journalists (RHJ) and other stakeholders, therefore, resolved to fight the menace using legal means and advocacy to seek redress for the victims and bring the perpetrators to book.
After receiving pathetic reports of the criminal acts from victims and their representatives, the forum condemned the ugly trend and charged the state government, the House of Assembly and security agencies to take immediate steps to arrest the situation.
The meeting also resolved to send protest letters to Governor Sullivan Chime, the state legislators and security agencies and thereafter mobilise women organisations such as the International Federation of Female Lawyers (FIDA), Nigerian Association of Women Journalists, Young Women Christian Association, National Council of Women Societies and Umuada Igbo Nigeria to tackle the problem.
The meeting, which reviewed RHJ activities in the South-East, evolved strategies to improve female reproductive health and rights campaigns and sensitisation in line with the vision and mission of Ipas, an international organisation that has Dr. Ejike Orji as Nigeria’s country director/team leader.
In the post-meeting communiqué issued by the participants, they pledged to step up activities towards reducing abortion complications and deaths resulting therefrom and related reproductive health matters.