By Adebayo Olodan
Kwara State records an average of 1,000 rape cases every year, according to SAAB Foundation, a Non-Governmental Organisation based in Ilorin, the state capital.
During a recent “Walk Against Rape” campaign, the foundation advocated for death penalty for suspected rapists.
Speaking during the event, representative of the Kwara State Commissioner for Women Affairs, Hajia Bilkis Sidiq lamented that rape cases recorded in the ministry featured more elderly people than young adults as perpetrators.
Sidiq, who is a director in the ministry, explained that there was a booklet where such cases were recorded, adding that the number kept rising on the list.
While commending the “walk against rape,” Hajia Bilkis said government remained committed to doing everything possible to stem the tide of rape in the state.
Speaking, the Founder of SAAB Foundation, Miss Bibire Sa’adat, said at least 1,000 cases of rape are recorded in the state according to a research.
She however expressed concern that there was no effective law against rape, saying that yet the police and the society stigmatise victims.
Bibire, who started the campaign against rape in January 2016, said she had so far been involved with eight survivors, among them three young boys, one of who was raped repeatedly by the maid in their house adding that uncles raped the other two.
In a related development, SAAB Foundation will on Saturday stage a walkathon (rally) against gender-based violence.
The event themed; Unite against gender-based violence will kick off 10am at the Kwara State Banquet hall.
According to the founder, Sa’adat Bibire, “This is the time we stand up to act and discourage gender violence, it’s becoming alarming, and it’s a stigma in the society on the unfortunate victims.
“This is a cogent clarion call, calling out the government, both public and private parastatals and individuals to help in this amiable project.”
According to Bibire, among the side attractions are dance, talk show, drama, free counseling, free check-up, HIV test and many more.
Meanwhile, wave-making music producer, Krizbeatz is set to show his passion largely unknown to many people.
The versatile songwriter has signed in to join Saturday’s walk against gender-based violence, an annual enlightenment and sensitising programme.
According to Krizbeatz, “I am very excited about this initiative because I believe these are issues that concern every serious-minded citizen. So, I am joining the cause to lend my voice to the scourge as we seek to finally kick it out of our society through campaigns like this.”
The programme is supported by the Kwara State Government through the office of the Chief of Staff.