Lagos State government yesterday, revealed that 2588 children experienced emotional, sexual abuses and were exposed to domestic violence within their homes in the state between August 2022 to July 2023.
The Permanent Secretary, Solicitor-General and Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Justice, Ms. Titilayo Shitta Bey, stated this at a press conference to flag off this year’s domestic and sexual violence awareness month themed “Not in my Lagos” usually marked every September.
Shitta-Bey represented by the Executive Secretary, Of the Lagos State Domestic and Sexual Violence Agency, Mrs Titilola Vivour-Adeniyi, added that 40 per cent of these children have been taken through counselling programmes to ensure they are able to psychologically deal with the events they have witnessed without it having a permanent and negative impact on them.
She said, “609 (Separation, failure to take responsibility of child(ren), Neglect, Child Abduction, child labour, custody, 143 Child Abuse, Physical Assault, 235 Defilement cases, three Defilement, Molestation by Minor to Minor and 33 sexual harassment, molestation cases.
“From August 1, 2022 to July 31, 2023, the agency has handled 5624 cases which are into two categories, adults and children. The agency now receives an average of 250 clients on a monthly basis. For adults- 91 per cent of survivors were female whilst 9 per cent were male, whilst for children- 45 per cent of survivors were boys whilst 55 per cent were girls.”
She revealed that all the survivors of sexual assault received medical attention from comprehensive Primary Healthcare Centres, general hospitals and Sexual Assault Referral Centres including Mirabel Centre, Women at Risk International Foundation (WARIF) as well as Idera Centre.
“In the period under review, the Agency has provided services to seven persons with disabilities who were experiencing one form of Gender Based Violence or the other.
“The youngest child that experienced sexual violence was an 18 months old baby, whilst the oldest clients that experienced domestic violence were a 79 year old woman.”
Harping on the this year’s domestic and sexual violence awareness month, Shitta-Bey disclosed that a number of activities has been set out for the Lagos State Domestic and Sexual Violence Awareness Month in September, 2023.
She said that there would be an advocacy walk against domestic and sexual violence on September 4, 2023, within the Lagos State secretariat, Alausa, saying there will be a Market Fiesta tagged “MEN WEY SABI”.