The UN general secretary said ” sexual violence is a threat to ” collective security ” and a stain on “common humanity”. Sexual violence is a widespread crime and violation of basic human rights especially the freedom of expression, movement and liberty. This happens virtually in evert country both the developed and the undeveloped. Women and girls are most times, are the receiving end of sexual violence. They suffer various emotional and psychological trauma and they’re very vulnerable. Little wonder why we have so many feminist in our society today. Accolades to them actually.They’ve helped reduced the occurrences of sexual violence and brought various opportunities and support to the Girl child.
Women and girls are particularly vulnerable to sexual violence due to ongoing discrimination against them. Entrenched inequality in legislation, that is perpetuated by customs, traditions and religious texts, contributes to patriarchal attitudes, misogyny, gender-based stereotypes and violence. As a result, sexual violence is gender-based violence. Gender-based violence against women is defined as any act of violence against a woman because of her sex or gender, or any act of violence that peculiarly affects women.
However,sexual violence also affects men and boys, and may take specific forms intended to affect the masculinity or manly character as perceived by the perpetrator. Like sexual violence against women and girls,sexual violence against men and boys is often used as a means of dominating, subjecting or humiliating the victim and/or the group to which the victim belongs. Due to conventions associated with masculinity, men and boys who are victims of sexual violence face particular challenges in reporting such violence and receiving proper support from people.
Why do sexual violence thrive in our society today? This article will be discussing the challenges, prevention and recommendations for victims. Sexual violence thrive in our society because of the low status of girls and women especially in the rural areas. They are more exposed to sexual violence because they’re bottom of social hierarchy. They have little or no education. They’re hardly know what it means to be sexualy violated. They’re easily manipulated. They have no strong convictions and opinion. Inferiority complex is not also left out. All this contributes to the reasons why sexual violence actually thrives In a society.
Here’s another thing, the presence of sexual double standard in the society. In our modern world today, a lot of negative views are up against sexual violence as it brings great shame on the victims.Girls are advised to stay indoors, dress modestly to avoid unwanted attractions or even walking late at night. Thus when a girl is abused, the blame is put on the victim rather than the abuser. In addition, families do not help as well. They advice to victims to stay low and quiet to avoid ” economic devaluation “
We also have the challenge of marriage practices. Early child marriage is very rampant now as girls are given out in marriage at an early age. This barbaric practice leads to the high risk of physical abuse, especially those who are sold to foreigners in return for cash payments to the parents. Wives also, are not left out. They’re advised to endure a sexual violence from their partner because the practices of bride price makes them believe they were bought on monetary terms. Rebellion in a marriage may lead to the return of bride’s price to the wife’s family, thus leading to enduring a toxic marriage.
On another note, sexual violence is preventable but not inevitable. We could reduce sexual violence to the barest minimum by taking the following actions. First, we need a change in societal attitude. We need educate our boys and men to change their perspective about women. Women should be cared for, should be looked after, should be praised. They need understand that the female gender is worthy of opportunities. Secondly, we need raise awareness. Days of activism against gender violence, using mainstream and media, amplifying victim’s voices and ensuring women’s participation in decision making, peace and progress. Women need to heard in the society and not to be limited In a home.. Empowering women ensures a peaceful society, with full human potential and sustainable development.
Another promising approach to preventing sexual violence is setting up NGOs organisation, workshops, seminars materials for usage in schools and communities, radios and television appearances. The state government and the private sectors are not also left out in preventing such. The need of police officers to be up and doing is also necessary too, at least to bring the perpetrators to book. Another approach is working with faith based organizations such such as theological schools to make girls learn, unlearn and relearn.
In conclusion, what do we do when sexual violence has occurred. The need for access to justice is very much important. Customary laws should be harmonised with the legislation. So that rural communities can have also have access to seek redress in Court. Victims should be protected this comes in response to the strength of the police of the state or communities. Citizens should be protected by the law, making it difficult for crimes to take place.
In addition, States must take the legislative and regulatory measures required to enable the relevant authorities to hand down adequate protection orders, for victims in situations of immediate danger, imposing protection measures for the victims and different restraints on the person subjected to the order. These measures must ensure the prevention or continuity of acts of sexual violence or the protection of the victims of sexual violence and their wards in emergency situations of imminent harm, and when the source of the violence is an intimate partner, former partner or ex-spouse.
In the same vein, social media should support and increase the morale of victims, either to seek help or speak up when abused. The shame and silence around sexual violence on victims should be abolished. Victims are to cry out for help! The least we could also do as individuals is also to support NGOs. We could volunteers to help carry out activities to combat sexual violence. We could also help write articles and write up that will go a long way to help. We need end this impunity before its destroys our collative security!