According to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), a call was made during a panel discussion by Dr. Ganiyat Adesina who is the Dean, Faculty of Social Sciences of the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN).
Dr. Adesina brought attention to the lack of proper and well placed policies in tertiary institutions addressing sexual assault and how it does not usually favour the victims.
The call was made at the United States Embassy, Abuja where there were discussions on how to end the rampant trend of sexual assaults.
The event also featured a film screening of “The Hunting Ground” examining the root of sexual harassment, the complicit roles of the institutions and effects on victims and their families.
“In the handbooks, there is no section highlighting how sexual assault should be reported or the sanctions for it,” she stated.
Prof. Ocholi Ekundayo, Director, Centre for Gender Security Studies & Youth Advancement at the University of Abuja, said that new and specific policies are being set up due to the alarming rate of reported cases coming to light, especially after the highly publicized ‘sex for marks’ scandal involving Obafemi Awolowo University lecturer, Prof. Richard Akindele.
Also, Human Rights Activist, Dorothy Njemanze, made the call for indecent dressing to stop being associated as a reason for sexual abuse and rape.
“The fact that there are dress codes for university students will not solve the problem. Humans should be made to take responsibility for their actions and stop blaming the victim,” she said.
The convener of the AwareMeToo movement, Fakhriyyah Hashim, also noted the reluctance of victims to report such cases is due to the culture of making it a taboo to raise anything relating to sex.
I am Olamide George Nneka, a graduate of Mass Communication from Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago-Iwoye, Ogun State, Nigeria. Reach me via email@example.com