Yara Blog


I DON’T WANT YOUR BABY


Monday, March 11th, 2013  

The first time I mentioned, to the hearing of my mother, that I would like to adopt a child when I was older, I was sharply rebuked. This reaction left me puzzled, for though I had heard someone saying before that Nigerians weren’t favorably disposed to adoption, I had waved it off because I couldn’t believe anyone would be opposed to what in my opinion was a benevolent gesture. So, I set out to find out the truth about Nigerians’ attitude towards adoption, and here’s what I discovered.

www.ellieswonder.blogspot.com

www.ellieswonder.blogspot.com

Having a child is one of the yardsticks by which the success of a marriage is measured; therefore infertility can be one of the strongest sources of pressure on a marriage. Sometimes, the woman (who mostly bears the brunt of the stigma of infertility in our society) is made to believe that without children, her place has not been secured in her husband’s home [Ginger’s blog]. Adoption is one of the options that can be used to manage the situation.

Upon research on the subject, my fears were confirmed. The Ebunoluwa orphanage confirmed that in Nigeria, customs and traditions have it that children who cannot be cared for by their parents are taken in by someone within their extended family, but the idea of taking in or adopting a child who is not somehow related to the family is highly uncommon.

In a survey by Ezugwu of 264 women who were having difficulty conceiving in South-Eastern Nigeria to determine their knowledge, attitude and practice of child adoption, it was shown that 183 of them [69.3%] were unwilling to adopt, while only 81[30%] were willing to consider adoption.

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I’M A GIRL, NOT A SLAVE; THE ENDLESS ROLES OF THE AFRICAN GIRL CHILD


Tuesday, February 19th, 2013  

I wake up in the morning and the first thought on my mind is the dishes left unwashed from last night’s dinner. Then I think of the fact

www.epm.org

www.epm.org

that the pump where we fetch our water from is two streets away. I’ve walked that path so many times I could do it blind-folded. And I mustn’t forget that my youngest brother must go to school sporting a properly ironed uniform and with his homework completely, if not completely correctly, done. And then, ‘oh my goodness!’, I’d fallen asleep researching materials for my term paper which is due in two days. Great! These, more often than not, are the waking thoughts of the average African girl child, at least the one lucky enough to be in school.

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When the Law has No Power: The “Corrective Rape” Situation in South Africa


Thursday, January 10th, 2013  

www,icr.org

www,icr.org

South Africa has long been celebrated as the “Rainbow nation” because of her plurality and diversity. And, although South Africa was the first country to grant constitutional recognition to the protection of the rights of homosexuals, there appears to be a wide gulf between law and practice in this “progressive” state.

In recent times, there have been several cases of what has been termed “corrective rape” or “curative rape”. This refers to a situation where women who have sex with women (WSW) are sexually and brutally ‘punished’ by men for being gay and violating traditional gender presentation. Not long ago, on May 4, 2011, a 13 year old girl was raped near Pretoria, South Africa, because of her sexual orientation.  According to the young victim, her assailant told her he was “curing” her of lesbianism. This is just one of the many attacks on the dignity and bodily integrity of lesbian women. It is worth noting that such incidents of violence against WSW are not peculiar to South Africa but have also occurred in other African states like Zimbabwe and Uganda, as well as in Jamaica.

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THE RAPE CHRONICLES – The Reality


Friday, August 31st, 2012  

Before evidential issues are even raised, insuperable as they are, there still exist greater social challenges to attaining justice for women who suffer this crime. According to a 2006 Amnesty International report on rape in Nigeria that cited several national civil society organizations, the greatest challenges is getting victims to report the crime and getting the police to investigate and prosecute rape. The AI report also says social stigma is a major reason rape is under-reported. I personally think that we did not need the research to realize how badly rape victims are conceived by our society. Added to social stigma is the insensitive and traumatic treatment victims can expect to experience with the untrained police and the criminal justice system in Nigeria. As a matter of fact, the same Amensty International report, states that state actors especially the police are the major perpetrators of rape and violence against women.

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THE RAPE CHRONICLES – A Place for Date Rape?


Friday, August 24th, 2012  

Date rape is the common term for non-consensual sexual (vaginal, anal, oral) intercourse that is forced (by way of physical force or

psychological coercion) on a person by someone that they know. Date rape is a complex and difficult area of criminal law, given the nature of the relationship between the victim and the accused.  However, most jurisdictions like ours, make no legal distinction between date rape and rape. This is even though it is well known that rape occurs far more often between people already acquainted than between strangers.

(Date) Rape cases may also take the form of emotional or financial coercion as opposed to the regular physical coercion. Where the rapist is placed in a higher position, he may use his position to harass and intimidate a woman to succumb to his sexual demands. By instilling fear through threats, a woman in that circumstance who succumbs can hardly be said to have given her consent. Where the rapists threatens to withhold or refuse promotions, money, examination results or anything due to the victim, the eventual intercourse would also fall under the heading of rape. In these cases, there will be no form of physical evidence.

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THE RAPE CHRONICLES – Rape A Gender Question?


Friday, August 17th, 2012  

There are not many criminal acts as invasive, as degrading and as traumatizing as the act of rape. The victim becomes scarred for life, and many times, ends up with significant psycho-sexual challenges. It was conceived to be so reprehensible in the old days that the Law of Moses in the Old Testament of the Bible stipulated that the rapist be put to death. (Deut.22:25-26).

Rape is simply defined as non-consensual sex. But, in that definition lies the error of simplicity. It certainly raises more questions than it answers. What if the victim “invited” the non-consensual sex, perhaps by her dressing or her attitude? What if she didn’t struggle or cry for help?  What if both parties were drunk? What if the “rapist” heard yes when the victim was really saying no? What if she was not particularly forced, but was only emotionally coerced? Or financially coerced?

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Litter The Law


Monday, August 13th, 2012  

I am very passionate about the environment, more importantly the environment where I reside: Nigeria. And there is something that always speaks to me: litter. I see it everywhere and it begs me to pick it up…on the streets, just beside a trash can, on the road, in the gutters….everywhere!  Nigeria is filled with litter! But what can we do about it? The government is already overburdened with problems of security, education, employment and others with such magnitude of importance, and to add that, the burden of the environment might even seem cruel or harsh, not to mention the issue of opening the floodgates of the court. Therefore the constitution has made the rights to the security of the environment non-justiciable according to Section 20 of the 1999 Constitution.

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AFRICA – Does Poverty Stop Here?


Monday, June 4th, 2012  

www.southafrica-pig.blogspot.comA few years ago my room-mates and I watched a very unflattering foreign documentary supposedly about life in Lagos. It was as typical of most stories about Africa that one finds in mainstream Western news media – a veritable catalogue of woes. The visuals consisted almost exclusively of swampy slums with houses on stilts; there was hardly any information on the less grim aspects of the city. One of the scenes featured an interview with an adult male resident of a Lagos slum, conducted, dramatically, whilst the man excreted in the lagoon. I remember recoiling in vicarious shame at the rebarbative sight – the same way I presume parents must feel when publicly embarrassed by an ill-mannered child. In many ways it was depressing to watch, this depiction of Lagos as the desolate habitation of a forgotten people. I remember the heated arguments that broke out when a room-mate spoke out in defence of the documentary and called it an authentic depiction of the realities of life in Lagos.

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