Rasaq Ibrahim, Ado-Ekiti
The Ekiti State Government has raised the alarm over high rate of defilement of public secondary school students across the state by their teachers.
The Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Olawale Fapohunda said the ministry of Justice and state police command were currently investigating the allegations of sexual violence in the state-owned public schools.
He spoke in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital at the weekend during a meeting with the State Executive Council of the Nigerian Union of Teachers (NUT).
Fapohunda said the preliminary investigations by his office revealed that some members of the NUT in at least three secondary schools were indulging in the heinous act.
He pointed out that the establishment of the Sex Offenders Register in the State had raised awareness among the population and consequently helped victims to report any cases of sexual violence to the ministry.
He further said that the preponderance of allegations of defilement in schools compelled his office to formally advise the police and other security agencies on the need for a thorough investigation of the matter.
The Attorney-General who stressed that the state government had zero tolerance for all forms of sexual related offences, noted that the GBV Prohibition law and the Child’s Right Law which had since been domesticated by the state adequately protected the rights and the dignity of every child
He disclosed that he had received correspondences that he should not prosecute the matter to avoid possible face-off between the ruling APC and the teachers, saying the government is ready to go against all odds to prevent the state from being tagged a thriving land for violence against women and girl-child.
“I find such reasoning unacceptable and deeply offensive. This is not about APC or PDP, it is simply despicable that anyone will play politics with the lives of our daughters. If our insistence that our daughters will not be raped will make us lose teachers votes then let it be so.
“Majority of teachers in the State are hard working, many working diligently under difficult conditions to ensure that their students excell.
It is therefore important that the NUT take immediate and urgent action to identify the very few who are bringing the name of the union into disrepute”, he said.
In his response, the NUT Chairman, Com. Samuel Olugbesan, who frowned at the alarming cases of sexual violence perpetrated by teachers, reiterated the Union’s commitment towards eradicating sexual violence in schools.
He noted the union will take urgent measures in responding to the situation, stressing that any teachers found culpable would be left to face the full wrath of law.