CASES OF SEXUAL OFFENCES:
Uwaila Vera Omozuwa was a 22-year-old studying microbiology at a university in Nigeria’s Benin City, but her passion was theology. Investigations showed she was raped and killed in a church premise with a fire extinguisher. ~Reported on CNN.COM
And when I asked what he wanted, he proceeded to take off my underwear and he went down and started performing oral sex on me. At that point I realized that I was going to be raped. And I knew that he was bigger than I was, I knew that he had been drinking, because I could smell it. I assumed that he was a criminal. I knew he was carrying a knife and that my odds of physically protecting myself were minimal. ~Jennifer Thompson (a rape victim) recounts her encounter on PBS.ORG
The rapes and murders of Jennifer Ertman and Elizabeth Peña, two teenaged girls from Houston, Texas, aged 14 and 16, respectively, occurred on June 24, 1993. The murder of the two girls made headlines in Texas newspapers due to the nature of the crime and the new law resulting from the murder that allows families of the victims to view the execution of the murderers. ~Reported on WIKIPEDIA.ORG
In April (2020), an 18-year-old known only as Jennifer was allegedly attacked and raped by a gang of five men in Kaduna, a city in northern Nigeria. ~Reported on ALJAZEERA.COM
In October 2017 in Ghana, the mother of a 4-year-old girl defiled by a community member at Assin Adadientem in the Central Region was calling for justice.
Distressed Monica Nyarko had accused a chief in the area of obstructing justice as she alleged the chief told her action cannot be taken against the accused.
According to her, the chief told her the community gods say the suspect is innocent. ~Reported by TODAYGH.COM
We also have the famous KKD (49years) Rape case about a 19year old.
What do you think about sexual offenses: rape, defilement, abuse, incest, assault? Is it your position that women are guilty of the crime of “obscenity” (Obscenity laws are concerned with prohibiting lewd, filthy, or disgusting words or pictures). In a case, the courts had to discuss whether the inscriptions on a woman’s attire, inviting men for a sexual engagement amounts to obscenity. What do you think? Would you say it is a woman’s fault (victim blaming) because she wore something indecent? Does a mini skirt mean “I’m willing to have sex with the whole world”? [Think about it]
THE POSITION OF GHANAIAN LAW:
The Criminal And Other Offences Act, Act 29;
Section 97 —Rape.
Whoever commits rape shall be guilty of a first degree felony and shall be liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term of not less than five years and not more than twenty five years.
Section 98 —Definition of Rape.
Rape is the carnal knowledge of a female of sixteen years or above without her consent.
Section 101—Defilement of Child Under 16 Years of Age.
(1) For purposes of this Act defilement is the natural or unnatural carnal knowledge of any child under sixteen years of age.
Section 103—Indecent assault.
(1) Whoever indecently assaults any person shall be guilty of a misdemeanour and shall be liable on conviction to a term of imprisonment of not less than six months.
(2) A person commits the offence of indecent assault if, without the consent of the other person he—
(a) forcibly makes any sexual bodily contact with that other person; or
(b) sexually violates the body of that other person
in any manner not amounting to carnal knowledge or unnatural carnal knowledge.
(1) A male of sixteen years or over who has carnal knowledge of a female whom he knows to be his grand-daughter, daughter, sister, mother or grandmother commits an offence and shall be liable on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term of not less than three years and not more than twenty-five years.
(2) A female of sixteen years or over who has carnal knowledge of a male whom she knows to be her grand-son, son, brother, father or grandfather commits an offence and shall be liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term of not less than three years and not more than twenty-five years.
(3) A male of the age of sixteen years or over who permits a female whom he knows to be his grandmother, mother, sister or daughter to have carnal knowledge of him with his consent commits an offence and shall be liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term of not less than three years and not more than twenty-five years.
(4) A female of the age of sixteen years or over who permits a male whom she knows to be her grandfather, father, brother or son to have carnal knowledge of her with her consent shall be liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term of not less than three years and not more than twenty-five years.
(5) In this section “sister” includes half-sister, and “brother” includes half-brother, and for the purposes of this section any expression importing a relationship between the two people shall be taken to apply notwithstanding that the relationship is not traced through lawful wedlock.
Under the Domestic Violence Act of Ghana, we have as follows;
Meaning of Domestic violence
Section 1. Domestic violence means engaging in the following within the context of a previous or existing domestic relationship:
(ii) sexual abuse, namely the forceful engagement of another person in a sexual contact which includes sexual conduct that abuses, humiliates or degrades the other person or otherwise violates another person’s sexual integrity or a sexual contact by a person aware of being infected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) or any other sexually transmitted disease with another person without that other person being given prior information of the infection;
(c) Harassment including sexual harassment and intimidation by inducing fear in another person.
Section 2.(I) A domestic relationship means a family relationship, a relationship akin to a family relationship or a relationship in a domestic situation that exists or has existed between a complainant and a respondent and includes a relationship where the complainant
(a) Is or has been married to the respondent;
(b) Lives with the respondent in a relationship in the nature of a marriage even if they are not or were not married to each other or could not or cannot be married to each other;
(c) Is engaged to the respondent, courting the respondent or is in an actual or perceived romantic, intimate, or cordial relationship not necessarily including a sexual relationship with the respondent;
(d) And respondent are parents of a child, are expecting a child together or are foster parents of a child;
(f) and respondent are family members related by consanguinity, affinity or adoption, or would be so related if they were married either customarily or under an enactment or were able to be married or if they were living together as spouses although they are not married.
Safe to say a married woman can still be raped, isn’t it?
EFFECTS OF RAPE AND SEXUAL ASSAULT
What are common physical effects of sexual assault and rape?
Bleeding (vaginal or anal)
Broken or dislocated bones
Sexually transmitted infections/diseases
Trauma leading to scarring
What are common mental effects of sexual assault and rape?
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), including flashbacks, nightmares, severe anxiety, and uncontrollable thoughts.
Depression, including prolonged sadness, feelings of hopelessness, unexplained crying, weight loss or gain, loss of energy or interest in activities previously enjoyed.
Suicidal thoughts or attempts.
What are common emotional effects of sexual assault and rape?
Changes in trusting others
Anger and blame
Loss of control
Sense of vulnerability
Self-blame/guilt for “allowing” the crime to happen.
Feeling that these reactions are a sign of weakness.
What else could someone experience after a sexual assault or rape?
Other circumstances can develop for a survivor after being sexual assaulted or raped. A survivor may develop a negative outlook and feel “damaged” or unworthy of a better life. Drug or alcohol abuse may also become an issue as a way to cope with the overwhelming feelings. Women may also have trouble with their menstrual cycle and fertility. In addition, survivors may experience:
Shortness of breath
Changes in eating and sleeping patterns
~ The effects are reported on JOYFULHEARTFOUNDATION.ORG
A lot of women go through these thought-torturing experiences and you hear rape apologists victim blaming!
Tell you something, whenever you victim blame (whether in public or privately), a victim who hears your excuses for a rapist feels twice the pain she already feels. How do you deal with being blamed for your own loss?! (I mean, a non redeemable loss in fact). I agree with my learning colleague who argued that it shouldn’t amount to victim blaming that we’re advising women to be decent in order to avoid such ill fate. The caveat however is that when it happens, your season for advice has already ended, don’t join the bunch of insensitive commentators in the guise of “logical engagements” and under the shield of “advice” to give excuses for rapists!!
What is bad is bad, and there can’t be a justification for it being good.
Look at the effects one after the other and tell me which of them you think could be light on you if you were the victim or your sister or your girlfriend or your friend or your dear cousin!
Every single sexual offence is so bad and non-justifiable; end of story! Many girls do no report sexual offences to avoid stigmatization and it’s high time we write stories that boost their confidence in the justice system and before the “panel of public opinions”.
- Society should protect victims by removing stigma, victim blaming and victim shaming.
- Government should build infrastructure to accommodate victims and protect their identities. If recommendation (1) holds however, there won’t be a need for protection of identity.
- Women making false reports about sexual offences undermine the whole idea of victim defending and become the excuse for victim blaming. This too should end.
- As much as possible my lady, don’t walk alone!
Thank you all for reading, I’m Gifty Aku Hlordjie, and I entreat all ladies to calm down, we’re still leading the fight against sexual offences, it may never end, but criminals must never go scot-free either. Oh and certainly, our 🌞 SUN SHALL SOON SHINE 🌞