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Sex offender register hailed

Publish date: 02 December 2019
Issue Number: 852
Diary: IBA Legalbrief Africa
Category: Nigeria

Campaigners have hailed the launch of Nigeria’s first sex offender register as a vital step towards tackling reported cases of sexual abuse, which are rising across the country. The publicly accessible online register of people prosecuted for sexual violence since 2015 will allow public bodies and police authorities to conduct background checks and identify repeat offenders. Oluwaseun Osowobi, the director of the Stand To End Rape NGO, said 'if a case is reported anywhere in the country, it is now on the register'. The Guardian reports that the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons, along with 15 NGOs supported by the British Council, will monitor reported cases of sexual abuse, providing monthly updates to the register. The report notes that data on the number of reported cases is scarce in Nigeria, where patriarchal traditions stigmatise people who come forward. According to Unicef, one in four girls in the country have experienced sexual violence by the age of 18.

Full report in The Guardian