Child Molestation also called Child sexual abuse as defined by Wikipedia is a form of child abuse in which an adult or older adolescent uses a child for sexual stimulation.
There are various forms of child sexual abuse and they include engaging in sexual activities with a child whether by asking or pressuring, or by other means possible.
Watch this Video of the girl who was molested when she was nine. The campaign was carried out by Goldcoast Developmental Foundation: https://youtu.be/KCVK3MQuJJ8
Other forms of Child abuse include exposing indecently the genitals, female nipples, child groom and child sex exploitation including using a child to produce child pornography
Neglect happens when a child molested does not get the necessary things needed to heal faster both mentally psychologically and health wise. For instance shelter, schooling, clothing, medical care, or protection he or she needs. Child neglect is just as serious as abuse and is more common.
Kaiser Permanente, a health publication stated that abuse and neglect hurt young victims especially in many ways. According to the publication, young children are at special risk. They may not grow properly. They may have learning problems. They may feel bad about themselves and not trust other people. They may be scared or angry. Sometimes they die.
Some of these victims usually believe that abuse is their fault. They may think that they did something wrong and deserve what happened.
People should also not forget that victims of sexual molestation have dreams just as every human is a born dreamer. Everyone has one dream or the other. Some live to achieve those dreams. Others don’t take the necessary steps needed to achieve them, making their visions go into extinction. Unfortunately for most young ones who have big dreams for themselves, their family and the entire society, their dreams are usually truncated by an unpredictable circumstance such as sexual molestation.
The first thing that comes to the mind of people when they hear of cases of sexual molestation is justice for the victim. While it is good to seek justice for the victim, it is better when they are rendered the necessary assistance after justice has been delivered to their favour.
Meeting their needs will help them heal faster. Assistance and care should be shown to those who do not have any hope of furthering ahead. For instance, if the victim was under the care of a molester before the incident, it is not expected that the victim goes back to the arms of the perpetrator.
Take for instance the case of a young girl named Pere-ere who was sexually molested by one Priye Ojoko her aunt’s husband when she was 9 years old. Some persons might conclude that her case is minimal as there are children less than her age who have been sexually assaulted too. This could be true but her case was different as the perpetrator continued the act years later.
After she was defiled at that young age, she was taken back to the village. Years later, her aunt came back and pleaded with her to return with a promise to take care of her education, even to the university level. She also assured her that her husband was a changed man.
Her love and desire to go to school and scale as high as the university level, made her yield to the plea by her aunt to come back to the house. Her father is married to another woman and does not attend to their needs while her mother struggles to feed them. It was quite obvious that staying with her mother was not going to help her fulfil her dream that much.
In fact, it’s on record that Priye Ojoko the husband of the aunt, advised his wife to bring her back so that she could take care of their girl child while she was away working. According to him, there was no need to give the money to an outsider especially when it could be useful to a family member who could be taken care of with the money.
Well, could she be blamed? Her mother could not afford to take care of her education and that of her sibling.
Unfortunately for her, her aunt’s husband started assaulting her sexually again to the extent that he increased it to twice daily. When the teenager tried to speak, the perpetrator threatened her.
As she could not keep the hurt anymore, she confided in her friend who is also a school mate of hers in one of the schools in Yenagoa. Her friend took her to their school counsellor who escalated the matter to the International Federation of Women lawyers(FIDA) Bayelsa, FIDA in turn reached out to Goldcoast Developmental Foundation another NGO
Both humanitarian organizations have secured a long term partnership and are committed to working together to effectively reduce and prevent all forms of sexual violence, abuse and violation of the girl child in Bayelsa State and the Niger Delta region at large.
The perpetrator, Preye Ojoko was arrested, tried and found guilty.
The High Court 9 of Bayelsa state, presided by Hon. justice T.Y Abassi gave the judgement on January 9th over a defilement matter of The State versus Preye Ojoko, and the judgment was given in favour of the state which to Goldcoast Developmental Foundation and FIDA was ground breaking and encouraging.
The matter started on February 4th, 2021 with both the prosecution and the defence opening and closing their cases same day not exempting trial within trial.
The court however tempered justice with mercy by sentencing the defendant to 5 years imprisonment.
The question of what becomes the fate of the victim after justice is given should be asked here. Most times, these vulnerable victims are left to fend for themselves, especially if they were under the care of the perpetrator or an accomplice. With regards to the young girl above who was under the care of someone who promised her education, her hopes could be shattered if nothing is done to meet her basic needs. Her desire is to be schooled so she can contribute to the society.
It takes a collective responsibility to make a change. Now that she has gotten justice, it is not the end of her story. Rather another chapter of her life has just been created.
She needs You and I to help in making this chapter of her life a better one.
Financial assistance to send her back to school is needed. You can play a good part in that. Her love for education is overwhelming. You and I can help her to fulfil her desire of being educated.
A campaign was lunched to raise fund for Pere-ere. See Video :https://youtu.be/KCVK3MQuJJ8