Good afternoon Listeners, I am Lady Jane Ndukwe, Director, Genuine Womanhood Initiative and presenter of Etiquette Matters on Coal City FM 92.9. I am here to lend my voice to Coal City Fm’s campaign against rape. The theme, RAPE CONTINUES TO BE A MAJOR ISSUE IN THE GLOBAL COMMUNITY; WHOSE FAULT IS IT?   

In time past, victims of rape, who were mainly women, were blamed and accused of inducing the rape either by their dressing or conduct. To further compound issues, they would be ridiculed and told they enjoyed being raped. How absurd! Certain myths surrounding the issue of rape such as when a woman says ‘No,’ she actually means ‘Yes,’ also made matters worse. With more research into rape causes, we can categorically state that the rapist will always be at fault. Whatever the situation is, rape must never be the way to go.   

Rape is when a person forces another person to have sex against his or her will.

Different rapists commit rape for different reasons. What may trigger rape in one man may differ in another man. One size does not fit all. This is what makes the issue of rape quite complex. Today, we are seeing many causes of rape, which have no direct linking to the victim’s behavior or dressing, which means we must become more intentional about fighting this vile behaviour. Many things can cause a person to rape another. I shall try to enumerate some of these:

  1. Watching adult movies or reading adult magazines can lead to over stimulation causing a man who lacks self control to grab any available girl or woman who appears harmless, to relieve himself.
  2. Being at the wrong place at the wrong time. For example, a girl walking through a dark alley or lonely path with uncompleted buildings at night.
  3. Sense of Entitlement – This stems from a patriarchic mentality, where the man feels superior to the woman and believes he has the right to her body and everything concerning her. If a boy is brought up with such a mentality, he may resort to raping a girl who rejects his advances. Some men deal with rejection by exerting control over a weaker person in order to feel worthy.
  4. Revenge – Being scorned by a woman, robs a man’s ego. This may trigger the need to revenge. Men are aware of how demeaning rape is and how this makes a woman feel helpless and unworthy, which makes rape a weapon in the hands of a mean spirited man who wants to take revenge for being scorned. This is the reason why girls should be more tactful how they turn down advances. Turning a boy down in front of your girl friends and shaming him may lead to something the girl never imagined possible such as gang rape just to humiliate her.
  5. Being under the influence of alcohol or drugs can lead to rape.
  6. Having extended family or house helps living in a home where the parents are rarely there, can expose their children to being raped by these household staff.
  7. Boys and girls sharing the same room can lead to incest. When children get to seven years, the boys and girls must have separate rooms to avoid unnecessary temptation and exposure to indecent behavior.
  8. Indecent dressing can also lead to rape even though many people don’t want to acknowledge this.
  9. Lax ways of dealing with rape cases. When law enforcement agents mock the victim and insinuate that she caused it; rape will continue to escalate.
  10. We also hear cases of women being raped in detention facilities, which is absurd. If the people who are to protect the women also rape the women, where do we go from there?
  11. Abuse of authority has resulted in girls being raped.
  12. Lack of proper data on rape incidences has caused many rapists to get away with their crime and continue to rape. Hopefully, with the Nigerian Sexual Offenders register in place, this may act as deterrent to some rapists.
  13. The culture of silence in time past contributed to the escalation of rape cases. Thank goodness for social media and mass media creating awareness of rape and encouraging victims to speak out. Nevertheless, we cannot rule out the stigma often attached to rape victims causing family members to be unwilling to speak out on rape incidences.
  14. Finally, we cannot rule out people with psychological issues who rape for reasons you cannot fathom. For example a man raping a baby with his wife holding down the baby is sickening.

When people insist on blaming rape victims, I ask; whose fault is it when: A father rapes his daughter; A brother rapes a sister; A pastor rapes a member of his church; An employer rapes an employee; A teacher rapes a student; A house boy, uncle, driver or gardener rapes the employer’s daughter; An old or middle-aged man rapes a child of eight or nine and claims he’s married to her; A youth rapes an old woman; Whose fault is it?

 I cannot over-emphasize the dehumanizing and traumatic effects of rape. A victim may never quite get over the experience. Some feel so worthless because their dignity has been eroded. Some feel so dejected, hating themselves and also men. Some may decide to live as prostitutes because they longer have a sense of value. Yet the man who robbed this girl of her innocence and her dreams is allowed to walk freely. He continues to take advantage of vulnerable girls and women. This must not be allowed to continue. A rapist is an animal who takes without consent. Rape is a violation against the body, mind and soul of a human being. Girls and women are human beings and deserve the right to live without being molested.

When we trivialize rape cases, we breed outraged victims, who may one day, take out their frustrations on innocent members of the society. Say No, to rape! Educate the boy child that it is never alright to take without consent. Anyone who takes what does not belong to him is a thief and must be treated like a thief. Anyone who forcefully takes what does not belong to him is a bully and must be treated like a bully. Anyone who violates a woman is indeed a coward. He can only exert control on a defenseless person but can never stand up to his match. Rape is a crime and must be treated accordingly.

Jane Ndukwe

Director, Genuine Womanhood Initiative