Anambra State Child Right Implementation Committee, (ANSCRIC) has launched a special operation to shut down all baby factories and illegal motherless babies home in the state and prosecute their operators.
The Commissioner for Women and Children’s Affairs, Lady Ndidi Mezue disclosed this on Wednesday in a chat with TNC in Awka.
Mezue, revealed that so far, three orphanage homes have been shut down across the state, for engaging in sharp practices that violate sections of the Child Rights Law.
She also said the state government has issued a final warning to rapists and other sex offenders in the state especially against the children, to desist or face the full wrath of the law.
“Anambra State government under Governor Willie Obiano has taken a firm position against rapists and sexual offenders. That is why it set up the Anambra State Child Right Implementation Committee, ANSCRIC, to enforce the law against molestation, sexual violation of any kind and rape of any Anambra child especially the girl child,” Mezue said.
Describing rape as a social vice and infernal pandemic of sorts, the Commissioner decried the rising cases of the unholy act.
She, however, clarified that the number of reported rape cases in the state appeared to be increasing because of the level of awareness created by the state government which has encouraged and emboldened victims to come forward with their stories.
According to her “On September 17, 2019, Gov Obiano established NTASI – a sexual assault referral centre at Enugwu-Ukwu in collaboration with the Rule of Law and Anti Corruption, ROLAC, an agency under the British Council and European Union, to receive reports from and offer to counsel to victims.
“So far, we have recorded 103 cases at the referral centre. There, we have qualified doctors and medical support staff to examine victims. We counsel them and refer cases to the legal department who prosecute them through the Ministry of Justice,” she further stated.
The commissioner advised parents and guardians as well as all victims of rape and sexual assault to break the culture of silence and stigmatization often associated with such cases.
“Do not keep quiet and condone evil. Report to the centre and be assured that the state government will not only protect you but fight to ensure that every vile offender is brought to justice. We will not allow rapists any room in Anambra state. Gov Obiano has issued strict directives to prosecute rapists and all sex offenders under the Child Protection Law of 2014 and Violence Against Persons Law of 2017 enacted by the Anambra state government. The laws stipulate a jail term of 14 years to life imprisonment for offenders,” she stated.