AW Gist : The Change Agents ( Sexual Violence)

By Onozasi

This is about picturing the realities in our society.

Just before you begin : This is a discussion between three social agents, three women involved in different social innovations who’ve been brought together to discuss the different issues they’ve solved, the different stories they’ve heard and how we all can become good influencers, good change agents. I hope this stirs a thing up as you read.

                             Meet the Change Agents:

My name is Jadesola Olumide, I Work with women in rural and urban Nigeria. My organization teaches them to work with their hands to make money, well that’s what some people call skills acquisition. I have worked with over 5,000 women and I am still working daily with women and girls.

I am Tomi Nelson, I am an advocate against rape and sexual assault in society. I was working in the UK before coming to stay in Nigeria, and I must say I have seen much more than I expected to see. It’s no news that we have a lot to do but it is news that we need hands to make this happen.

My name is Lilian Ukachi. I am a media personality, social media influencer and trainee. I work with women and girls on a daily basis, I listen to them, motivate them to thirst for more and go beyond their boundaries. We have a lot of women and girls out there whose zest for life has been destroyed. It is imperative that we join hands to make their dreams come true.

 

                                         violence                                                   

 

 

                                                                   Topic: Sexual Violence

 

Tomi Nelson: There is no excuse. We must take serious actions against this as a country and I am sorry to say, this country, we aren’t ready to tackle this issue the way it should be tackled. We joking around and about a very important issue.

Lilian Ukachi: I tell you, Tomi. That is the word. We are joking about this issue. We are not pushing buttons the way we should. We are playing round and round in circles and we are not making progress. We say the same thing, repeat and repeat and repeat and it looks as if no one is listening. We move forward in 10kms and move backwards in 358kms and it is annoying. Women too should stop this bait game. ‘If I don’t stay this would happen to my children’, girls too should stop keeping quiet when someone harasses them. I know the federal government has approved the sexual offender’s register so we can call that progress right? report their name and let us shame them. Let their assess be pulled out and moreover as a media person, I would like to say this to media houses, all these topics on ‘Why women are being raped. what women should do to avoid sexual abuse’ should be scrapped. They are nonsensical. The conversation should be about rapists. How people can be taught to respect the bodies of other people. How No means No. We need to take these things seriously. It is alarming how we minute issues on sexual abuse, violence.

Jadesola Olumide: Let me say something about the lawmakers we have in Nigeria. Hay! I am tired. It is a pity that they pull strength into what they shouldn’t be pulling strength into. They say I and nay into something that is of no relevance. Severe charges on culprits, severe actions on these pastors that prey on their congregants. Instead, they want to play ‘the boys’ club on the lives of people. Some of them even pass stupid comments like ‘women exaggerate, they are trying to implicate men’ we are fighting for the rights of women and girls, We are talking about safety. Also,  Political will, will drive us to a safe haven on this issue in this country. A Renowned scholar and first lady of a state in Nigeria mentioned it in one of the videos I watched of her online, she spoke about political will being a force to drive this down and yeah, political will, will help us a great deal. We need to make sure that everyone, doesn’t matter their party, takes the lives of women seriously and once they are in power, they should pull up more. News of women being raped, children being raped, women being sidelined, domestic abuse etc etc. It is like everything is out there to push you away for being a woman. Haba na! This is very crazy and our laws don’t help matters. (Tomi Nelson cuts in, do they even respect the law)? Exactly! It is just crazy.

Tomi Nelson: They do not respect the law. They pay no attention to us. Imagine the case of a woman charging a rapist to court, the woman gets fined and the rapist gets acquainted. Like whaaattt!!! Humour me. They said because it has happened a long time ago bla bla bla and the fact that the man is also influential shows the woman wants to rubbish his name. stupid, logout, assumptions!!! That she came out years after means nothing. The case is still as valid as ever. Look at what they are doing in the united states military, any case on sexual abuse no matter the years will be treated as new and no stone will be left unturned. I don’t know what has happened to us that we have suddenly become lawless and we take pride in our lawlessness. This is the time for every woman out there to take up seats. If we have us at the helms of affairs in this country it will make this ride easier for us. It is really challenging.

Lilian Ukachi:  I know women need to take up seats but I don’t want us talking as if these men don’t know what is right from what is wrong.  The countries doing well with women are doing it alongside the men. I don’t know why we keep making it look like the man around here are gods. They must be pleased and if they aren’t pleased things cannot be done, things cannot be settled or we look for a way around it. We are talking about the lives of their sisters here, that of their mothers’ also. We are speaking hardcore truths here and every man should be concerned as we are concerned cos when a girl is raped, a sister is raped, a niece is raped. When a woman is murdered, a wife is murdered, a mother has died. Let us shake this table, scatter it and rebuild it. That is the way forward.

                                           Moderator: What is the way forward? 

Tomi Nelson: Make laws that matter. Give us policies that would protect our girls and women. Make it work!!! Make it work!!!

Lilian Ukachi: The media should also change the narrative. Those stupid editorials on why women are raped, etc should be stopped. Educate the public in a good way and they should stop portraying women leaders as ‘bosses, villains’ should stop. We have same rights and that is all that matters.

Jadesola Olumide: Political willllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll!!! That is all that matters and women should speak. Take up positions and use it to the benefits of other women.

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Source: Above Whispers

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