After a recent increase in reports of rape, a new law has been signed in the state of Kaduna, Nigeria.

  • Under the new legislation, rapists will now face surgical castration.
  • Those who rape a child under the age of 14 will also face the death penalty.
  • A government spokesperson has explained that these ‘drastic penalties are required to help further protect children from serious crime’.

Amid the COVID-19 restrictions, there has been an increase in rapes and this has caused public outrage and anger.

According to the Telegraph, more than half of the female population in Nigeria has experienced sexual violence. Taking this further, between January and May, there have been nearly 800 reports of sexual violence and these numbers have only further surged from April after the COVID-19 restrictions were put in place. What is worse, the Telegraph reported that it is estimated that one in four women is sexually abused before they turn 18. Unfortunately, many victims refuse to speak up and report sexual abuse; for this reason, it is believed that the actual number of women who experience sexual abuse could be even higher.

The governor of Nigeria’s Kaduna state, Nasir Ahmad el-Rufai signed the new law on Wednesday.

Under the new legislation, rapists of children under the age of 14 will now face surgical castration and the death penalty. The Telegraph further noted that not only men will face this harsh law as women convicts will also have their fallopian tubes removed prior to their execution. For rape of those aged over 14, convicts will not face execution but they will still be punished with surgical castration. A government spokesperson commented on the new law as they explained that these ‘drastic penalties are required to help further protect children from serious crime’.

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