Amid the sex for grade scandal that broke in the wake of the BBC documentary, Erelu Bisi Fayemi, wife of the Governor of Ekiti State, Dr Kayode Fayemi, has recalled how she was sexually harassed while in the University.
At the premiere of the hour-long documentary on Sex for Grade, Mrs Fayemi said she cried because she could relate with what many young ladies go through with their lecturers and supervisors, adding that sexual harassment is an issue “many of us who passed through higher institution in this country,” are familiar with.
She decried a situation whereby some lecturers have a sense of entitlement to the bodies of their female students. .
One of the lecturers indicted in the documentary is Dr Boniface Igbeneghu, former sub-dean of the Faculty of Art at the University of Lagos. who behaved inappropriately towards the BBC undercover reporter, Kiki Mordi, who posed as a 17-year-old applicant seeking admission.
Read more about Dr Igbeneghu here: https://thepodiummedia.com/2019/10/07/foursquare-suspends-sex-for-grade-unilag-lecturer/
Mrs Fayemi was unequivocal in condemning sexual harassment:
“I was educated here in Nigeria and I too was a victim of sexual harassment during my university days. I was luckier than these victims. It didn’t go that far but it was extremely unpleasant and of course back in the days when all these things happened you can’t tell anyone because if you do even up till now people ask you to keep shut.
“You know people don’t talk about things like this. I was watching the documentary and there were three words that came to me, one is voice, it is time to speak up and speak out and for those who do we need to stand with them and stand by them and not silence them because the culture of silence has endured enough.
“Another word that came to me was accountability, we need to be accountable whether there are parents, guidance or teachers or leaders in any form through out the different section of society. We have to be accountable for the well being and health of the young people in our care, from when our children come to say mummy, uncle so so and so touched me and instead of asking further to find out what’s its all about, we should act.
“There has to be accountability and the third thing that came to mind was justice, justice for victim or I choose to call them survivors and so those of us who have worked in the women’s whether at international level or Africa or national air in Nigeria, we know that we have many law and policies in place that are supposed to guard against things such as this but this law sometimes means very little because there is inadequate political.”
According to her, the Ekiti State Government has now opened a register to name and shame sex offenders in the state.
With additional reports by The Cable
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