By Olayinka Latona
In response to the declaration ofÂ Child Sexual Abuse as a public health epidemicÂ that needs to be tackled from the grassroots, key members of Oshodi/ Isolo market women were last week engaged in a three-day peer education training workshop organised by Media Concern InitiativeÂ For Women and Children (MEDIACON).
There was emphasis on the need to handle issues of child sexual abuse with more seriousness. In the view ofÂ Mrs Bolatito Olayinka, a participants from the Mafoluku market , people should not be silent about acts of child sexual abuse such as rape.
She notedÂ that keeping silent on the issue of child sexual abuse would only continue to put the life of innocent children and the nation at large into problem. OlayinkaÂ said the issue of child sexual abuse is no longer a story inÂ society but the most disturbing and unfortunate aspect of it is that the silence arount it allows the innocent child to be traumatised psychologically, physically and which eventually leads to low self esteem of the victim.
Appealing to society at large, she called for courage to speak up and ensure that every case on child sexual abuse is prosecuted to the end irrespective of the person involved. She also advocated for a situation whereby society should not remain ignorant of the act and the consequences of the act on the victims arguing that if the perpetrators are let without being prosecuted according to the law, other children remains at risk.
â€œFamilies and individuals in society should no longer keep silent on the issue of child sexual because keeping quiet or being afraid to disclose it only put the lives of the victims into danger while those not yet abused are likewise in problem.â€
Folake Modupe Bankole, Senior Victim Advocate And Social Worker of MEDIACON said child sexual abuse isa major plight of the Nigerian child as one in every three girls and one in seven boys would have experienced one form of sexual abuse before attaining the age of 18 years.Â Such children can not handle the feelings that comes with sex either psychologically or emotionally.
Director of MediaCon, Dr. Princess Olufemi-Kayode said it is high time for Nigerians to take the issue of child sexual abuse seriously and if not the future of the nation is shaky if adequate and necessary action is not taken. While mothers are advise to observe their children from time to time.