Women journalists in Adamawa State under the support of Nigeria Association of Women Journalists (NAWOJ) on Thursday staged a street protest condemning the rising rape incidents and asking for a declaration state of emergency against rape.
The women who turned out in black attires carried placards expressing their grief: ‘NAWOJ Adamawa Says NO to Rape’, ‘It’s 5 Minutes for you, a lifetime for her’, ‘We seek justice for rape victims’, ‘I support death sentence for rape’.
The NAWOJ members who were supported by representatives of other women groups, walked through some streets in the Adamawa State capital, Yola, terminating the procession at the state Secretariat in Jimeta, where the Commissioner of Women Affairs and Social Development represented the state government in a brief ceremony.
The State Chairperson of NAWOJ, Zainab Sa’ed Abubakar, said rape had become a monster ravaging women, girls and even children.
“We ask the Adamawa State Government to declare a state of emergency against rape; it is becoming too alarming to be treated like just any other anti-social act,” the NAWOJ chairperson said.
She added that in the course of such emergency, efforts should be made to, among other things, find ways of getting rape suspects tried without virtually every rape case being thrown out of court usually for the ‘much cited want of evidence’.
Chairman of the Adamawa State Council of Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Ishaka Dedan, who also spoke, said journalists are tired of reporting rape incidents.
“NUJ is out to join NAWOJ against rape. We’ve had enough of writing stories about men raping their neighbours or even their daughters. The nonsense must stop,” the NUJ chairman said.
Addressing the protesters, the state Commissioner of Women Affairs, Lami Ahmed Ga’anda, said Governor Ahmadu Fintiri was with them in the protest against rape.
She said the executive arm of government was working with the legislature to pass a law to end ‘the barbaric act.’