29th November, 2021
By Ikenna Osuoha
Mrs Pauline Tallen, Minister of Women Affairs has recommended castration as punishment for fathers who sleep with their daughters an offense commonly referred to as incest in Nigeria.
Tallen made the recommendation at a news conference in commemoration of 16 days of Activism against Gender Based Violence (GBV) in Abuja on Sunday.
She described incest as the worst form of gender based violence, which required stringent punishment as castration.
“Incest is the worst form of gender based violence and I advocate castration as punishment for offenders.
‘Let us name and shame the perpetrators of incest because it is the worst,” she said.
The minister appealed to the media to amplify the message to end all forms of violence against women and girls and called for domestication of Violence Against Persons Prohibition Act by states.
Dr Natalia Kanem, Executive Director, UN Population Fund (UNFPA), blamed the prevalence of incest and other forms of GBV on conspiracy of silence.
Kanem noted that incest only thrived where the victim was coerced into being silent.
She expressed worry over the insecurity of the women and girls in home where they were supposed to be protected by the family but ironically are violated.
“Sadly, the girl child who is supposed to be nurtured in her family is raped by the same family,” he lamented.”
The executive director expressed the commitment of UNFPA to partner with Nigeria in creating a future where women and girls would be protected and dignified, saying, GBV was a crime against humanity.
She urged Nigeria to support women’s access to family planning services and end all forms of violence against women.
However, Ms Rachel Snow, Chief Population and Development Branch expressed determination of UNFPA to assist Nigeria conduct a credible and reliable census.
Snow described census as critical element for national planning and development.
She said that UNFPA was ready to support Nigeria to ensure that the census was transparent, credible and reliable.