The Badagry West Local Council Development Area (LCDA), Lagos State, on Saturday organised a one-day sensitisation programme for mothers in the area on rape and child abuse.
Declaring the programme open, Mrs Esther Gbenu, the Chairperson of the event urged parents to rise up against rape and child abuse.
Gbenu, who is also the wife of the Badagry West LCDA Chairman, Mr Joseph Gbenu, said rape and child abuse serious were crimes against humanity.
She said that some victims of rape had had their future ruined by this act.
The Guest Speaker, Mrs Damilola James of DGS Chauffeur Nig. Ltd, urged mothers to create time for their children when their fathers were not available.
“Communication with your children always enable them to have trust in their mothers.
“Let them know that their private part should be kept private.
“Use every weapon you have as a mother to raise them to become future leaders or responsible citizens of the country,” she said.
James urged mothers and guardians to stop sending their children and wards on street hawking.
She said mothers and guardians should do the hawking themselves if necessary, instead of exposing the children to criminals.
James tasked parents to discourage their children from collecting money from outsider, adding that it could lead to rape or assault.
The guest speaker said the act of rape was not something that should be covered up, adding that parent should endeavour to expose it.
“Rape is not an act to be covered; share the experience to save others. If you cover it, it is dangerous.
“If you are raped, report to the nearest police station before going to rehabilitation center. Exposing the act is best to save one from future pain,” she said.
Mrs Sewede Pot-Balogun, the Coordinator, Badagry Women Forum, urged parents not to stigmatise against the victims of rape.
Pot-Balogun said that real men would not rape, adding that parents should train their male children to seek consent from female children.
In her remarks, Mrs Sesi Ogungbe, the Supervisor for Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation (WAPA) in the area, urged mothers to report rape cases to her office.
According to Ogungbe, the office is always available to entertain such incidents and report to relevant agencies for necessary actions.
She said that it was disheartening that most cases of rape were being covered up when reported at the palace of the traditional ruler.
Mr. Rauf Yemaren, the Vice Chairman of the Local Government, commended the speakers and the participants.
Mr Ayodele Hungbe, the Council Manager, assured the people that the council would continue to sponsor such programmes to curtail cases of rape and child abuse in the area.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the Secretary to the Local Government, Mr Sovi Gusanu, Heads of Departments and women from different communities in the council attended the programme.