- As Kaduna declares war on rape
Northern state governors are canvassing for a change of existing penal code especially with regard to rape cases to make way for longer jail term for those convicted of rape in the region.
Kaduna State Governor, Nasir Ahmad El-Rufai, made this known while declaring war against rape following increased frequency of cases of in the rape in the state, adding that the moral depravity has become unbearable and intolerable.
“It may interest you to know that the 19 Northern state governors are currently reviewing the Penal Code which will also address the issue of rape and penalties because some of the penalties contained therein are no longer stringent enough in this century,” he hinted.
Reacting to the frequency with which rape cases are reported and the menace rape has become in the society, the governor lamented that rape is not only against women, but children and even men and therefore deserves urgent attention.
He disclosed the intention of his administration to curb the menace following the arrest and detention of a woman who allegedly specialises in organising minors for old men to abuse for pecuniary reasons, saying she would soon be arraigned in the court.
Speaking through his Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Samuel Aruwan, while addressing a press briefing at the Kaduna State Correspondent Chapel of Nigeria Union of journalists, the governor said, henceforth, perpetrators of the ugly menace must be brought to book.
He lamented the unwholesome activities of rapists in the state, saying his administration would employ all legal means to deal with the menace head long.
The governor revealed that the 19 Northern state governments are currently deliberating review of the penal code that would replace the obsolete punitive measures attached to cases of rape in the region.
“The state government is giving priority to security through multi dimensional approaches to nip the menace in the bud. We have recorded success in the fight against kidnapping and other vices since this administration came on board.
“One measure the government has taken is the will to ensure that all laws related to issue of crime in the state, including rape, especially by improving the capacity of the judiciary.
“Witness to justice bill is already in place. When finally signed into law, the bill will strengthen and protect people who have information regarding rape. As a government, we will continue to do our best to ensure safer Kaduna State.
El-Rufai further added that the recent arraignment of one 24 –year- old Haruna Tukur, who allegedly raped a 6-year-old girl, was proof that the state government meant business.
The governor then called on the media to join in the massive public enlightenment campaign on rape by sensitising victims and mothers who find themselves in this situation so they can make it public without fear or favour because of the future of the innocent girls.
“The arraignment of a rapist is an indication that the govt of the state is not happy with the madness. We are also investigating the reported bail granting to an accused person without been arraigned in court.
“The state govt is appreciating the people of the state, including the media, for their involvement in managing the security of the state as success so far recorded has been made possible as a result of information provided by the locals,” he added.
El-Rufai gave out hotlines 08064810576, 08050366625 to distressed people through which they can reach the security operatives for prompt intervention.