NIGERIA. Kaduna. Lawmakers in Kaduna State have approved surgical castration as a punishment for anyone convicted of sexually assaulting children under 14 years of age.
All that remains is for Governor Nasir Ahmad el-Rufai to put his signature on the approved bill for it to become official law in the North-Western region.
This move follows public indignation over an alarming rise in rape cases, which prompted the state governors to declare a state of emergency.
Under the Penal Code of Nigeria (Section 282), “A man is said to commit rape who has sexual intercourse with a woman in any of the following circumstances: Against her will, without her consent, or with her consent when the consent is obtained by putting her in fear of death or of hurt.”
Under the Criminal Laws of Lagos State (Section 258), “Any man who has unlawful sexual intercourse with a woman or girl without her consent, is guilty of the offense of rape.” This offense is punishable by 21 years of imprisonment for the rape of an adult and life imprisonment for the same crime committed against children under age 14, with or without caning.
Some recent and shocking rape-related cases
- Uwaila Vera Omozuwa, a microbiology student at a University in Nigeria’s Benin City, was raped before being brutally murdered.
- A man was arrested after raping 40 victims in a single town over a period of 1 year.
- Police arrested 11 men for raping a 12-year-old girl in Jigawa.
- Barakat Bello, age 18, was allegedly gang-raped and murdered in south-west Oyo state.
- A young girl, age 13, was gang-raped and dumped in a car in Kaduna State.
Women react to the approved bill
Women took to the streets last week in protest against the staggering increase in rape cases throughout the country. An online petition was signed by thousands on social media under the Twitter hashtag #WeAreTired. Countless women have shown their reactions to the newly approved bill, calling it a new dawn.
“If we don’t take action this way these people will think we are joking. We have to hold them accountable for their parlous actions,” said Adaezi Nwaribe.
“Most of these hooligans we send them to jail, and at the end of the day, they don’t even spend one week. The crimes continue reoccurring, so castration of rapists is the way to go.” She added bitterly.
As the nation waits for Governor Nasir Ahmad el-Rufai to put his signature on the recently approved bill, citizens of Kaduna State strongly believe this is going to put an end to the criminal behavior that has adversely affected Nigeria in recent days.