The Ogun State Government on Wednesday inaugurated a Sexual Assault Referral Centre at Olabisi Onabanjo University Teaching Hospital (OOUTH), Sagamu, to fast-track justice and compensation for victims of sexual assault.
The wife of the state governor, Mrs Bamidele Abiodun, said at the event that the centre would facilitate efforts to check cases of sexual assault and other gender-based violence in the state.
Abiodun said it was imperative for victims of sexual assault to be rehabilitated, compensated and reintegrated into society, pledging that government would do everything within its capacity to ensure justice for the victims.
“The menace has become the order of the day in our society and we are assuring that in this state, such crime will reduce drastically with the inauguration of the referral centre,” she said.
She noted that victims of sexual assault often underwent traumatic experience and psychological imbalance.
“This may manifest in different ways when they have memory flashbacks and can result in panic attacks, nightmares, intrusive thoughts and memories,” she said.
Speaking, the state Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr Akingbolahan Adeniran, noted that successful investigation and prosecution of gender-based violence was of paramount concern to the state government.
Adeniran, who was represented by Mr Olumide Mustapha, Special Adviser to the Governor on Legal Matters, also said that support for victims of sexual assault and other gender-based violence through empowerment and rehabilitation schemes would help reduce the adverse effect of the harrowing experience on their lives.
The Country Representative of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), Mrs Uller Mueller, stressed the need to fight against the crime for peaceful co-existence of male and female folks in the society.