In a bid to join the fight against Rape and Violence Against Women, the Society of Young Nigerian Writers (SYNW) an umbrella body of Young Writers between the ages of 10 and 40 in Nigeria has launched a new national campaign tagged “RAISE YOUR PEN AGAINST RAPE AND VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN” and also appointed a national steering committee to coordinate the project.
This was contained in a press statement jointly issued and signed by the National Coordinator and Secretary of the Movement, Miss Angelica .C. Uwaezuoke, SYNW Coordinator (University of Nigeria Nsukka) and Mr. Innocent David’ Chinaecherem, SYNW Coordinator (Federal University of Technology Owerri) respectively.
According to the Press Statement “UNICEF reported in 2015 that one in four girls and one in ten boys in Nigeria had experienced sexual violence before the age of 18. According to a survey by Positive Action for Treatment Access, over 31.4 percent of girls there said that their first sexual encounter had been rape or forced sex of some kind.
“Also a four-year review of sexual assault cases at LASUTH that began in 2008 and ended in December 2012, showed that out of a total 287 reported cases of sexual assault, 83% of the victims were below the age of 19. A one-year survey conducted at Enugu State University Teaching Hospital between 2012 and 2013 revealed that 70% of sexual assault victims were under the age of 18. In the Enugu survey, majority of the victims knew their perpetrators and the assault occurred inside uncompleted buildings and the victims or perpetrators residence.
“As writers, our primary job is to reflect and interpret happenings in our society; we must also provide inspiration and guidance in our writings. Our job therefore is to inform, to explain, to narrate, and to persuade. The function of a committed writer is to reveal the world so that every reader loses her innocence and assumes all her responsibilities in front of it.”
The newly appointed committee members are to come up with a published electronic anthology to be titled “Get Consent”. This anthology aimed to combat violence against women and the abuse of women. To also change community attitudes to violence against women.”
Other committee members appointed to assist in the coordination of the newly established initiative include: Abdulrazak Denja Balema (SYNW Coordinator, Federal University Lokoja), Sakinah Yusuf (SYNW Coordinator , Bayero University Kano), Adebayo Iwalola (SYNW Coordinator, Adekunle Ajasin University), Chinwendu Chinonyerem Emmanuel Rays (SYNW Coordinator, (Alvan Ikoku College of Education), Eniola Anowo (SYNW Coordinator, Olabisi Onabanjo University), Henry Ndifreke Precious (SYNW Coordinator, University of Abuja) Cynthia Chukwunenye Maduekwe (SYNW Coordinator, University of Calabar), Alabi Mathew Damilare (SYNW Coordinator, University of Lagos), Adebobola Victor Ademayowa (SYNW Coordinator, Federal University, Oye Ekiti), Ademola Ayomide Miracle (SYNW Coordinator, Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta), Yusuf Opeere (SYNW Coordinator, Federal College of Animal Health and Production Technology, Moor Plantation, Ibadan) Kehinde Gbadeyanka (SYNW Oyo), Etumnu Emeka Williams (SYNW Imo) Ademola Oluwabukola Christiana (Federal Polytechnic, Ede) and lastly Ayegh Lubem (SYNW Benue).
The body also appointed Mr. Izunna Okafor (SYNW Anambra) and Mr. Muhammad Musa (SYNW Kano) to supervise the running of the project.