Soroptimist International, a global volunteer advocacy group with affiliation in Nigeria, have taken the war on child and adult rape to Nigerian primary schools. Recently, the Apapa chapter of the organization took their campaign to Ire Akari primary school, Iganmu, where they took out time to educate the children on the issue of rape and sexual violence. But incidentally they were busy educating the kids on rape but the parents were absent. But according to the president Apapa chapter, Magdaleen Obiano, they have been organizing seminars and enlightenment for parents and women under pressure even from their spouses. “You know a husband can ape his wife”; she said, with a wry smile on her face.
Child molestation and rape has been in the front burner of National discuss, with so many gory tales coming out of the media of girl-children and under age children being molested even by their parents and relatives.
But Obiano insisted their efforts are yielding fruits. Though she did not say whether there has been any litigation involving child molestation and rape, she admitted that there are cases of widows being maltreated by her late husbands relatives whose cases have been taken over by the organization. “We took over her case and resettled her, seeing about her children’s education”, she said, emphasizing that they basically cater for the women, children and underprivileged.
Currently, there about twelve clubs in Lagos alone, which includes Apapa, Surulere, and Ikeja.
According to Obiano, the organization has been in existence for a long time. It is represented in Europe and the Americas. “We just came back from Maracas where we attended an international conference” she said.
Although there is no direct affiliation with other non governmental organizations, they collaborate when needed. For example, the Lagos state ministry of women affairs, which happens to be one of the emergency contact groups for victims. In fact, Olaolu roberts, a staff of the local council, was on hand to monitor the issue for the local government.
In attendance were Chinyere Udeagabala, slated t take over Apapa chapter; Magdalene Obiano, the current president Apapa Chapter; Joes Nwokedi, a member of board of trustees; and Bona Oluigbo, the immediate past President of the Chapter.