AHF inaugurates committee on age-appropriate sex education – The Sun Nigeria
By Rose Ejembi, Makurdi
Disturbed by the rising rate of sexual abuse among young people, especially in rural communities, the Aids Healthcare Foundation (AHF) has inaugurated a community age-appropriate sex education committee to address the lack of sex education among different categories of young people.
Inaugurating the Angwan Jukun community committee in the Wurukum area of Makurdi, Benue state on Thursday, AHF Advocacy and Marketing Officer Steve Aborisade said the committee would work with relevant community stakeholders to provide sex education to young people.
While lamenting the alarming rate of sexually transmitted diseases among young people, Aborisade said it was for this reason that the CSE committee was inaugurated to bridge the information gap.
“Globally, we are facing alarming rates of HIV, STIs and unintended pregnancies among young people, indicating to a large extent a lack of accurate knowledge, life skills and information .
“CSE is a fundamental part of the right to health and when we support the availability and accessibility of appropriate health information, we demonstrate respect for the rights of young people to be informed, healthy and to live a dignified life, which are essential for individual and collective well-being.
“It is in this regard that we are setting up this committee, to help shape a model of community intervention worthy of replication and capable of attracting investment in CSE, galvanizing wider institutional support towards its implementation implemented in schools and communities.
The AHF representative who revealed that the committee has 12 months to complete its work congratulated all the stakeholders present at the event and urged them to bring their rich individual experience on board so that the young people can get the proper sex education that would help them overcome any sexual challenges they might encounter.
For his part, Benue State Justice Commissioner and Attorney General Mike Gusa while commending the AHF for the bold step taken in this direction, explained that the department has always tried its best to s to ensure that cases of pedophilia and rape are resolved by the court without bias.
Gusa, who was represented by a director of the ministry, Obande Idikwu, lamented that prosecutions in cases of sexual abuse against young people are sometimes hampered because the family of the victim refuses to testify or the victim involved is reluctant to give a vivid narrative of how she was. sexually assaulted by the accused in court.
He, however, promised to ensure that any case brought before the ministry would be given due attention and justice served.
Gusa commended the AHF for including a ministry member on the committee and pledged that the government will ensure that sex education becomes a priority in most schools and communities.
Also speaking, the traditional leader of the Angwan-Jukun community, Chief Tanko Omale, appreciated AHF for bringing such an initiative to his community and promised to support the committee to ensure its success in its field.
The monarch maintained that the Jukun community had encountered so many difficulties, especially in the area of advising the younger generation not to indulge in social vices and other forms of atrocities, the monarch.
He, however, pleaded with the Committee to diligently carry out the mission entrusted to him and promised to work with them whenever they needed him.
Chief Omale, who revealed that he usually dresses up as an ordinary citizen and goes out most nights to see what is happening in the neighborhood and sometimes what he sees is very disturbing, said the AHF coming to his community was an answer to his prayer.
Other stakeholders who spoke at the event included Anna Okoh from the Ministry of Women’s Affairs, Ogbole Bernard from the National Human Rights Commission, Udanyi Martins from BENSACA, Ozobulu Tochukwu from Lawyers Alert and Favor Adah-Paul, Executive Director of Tivid Orphanage home, among others, emphasized the need for everyone to be on deck to ensure the success of the program in the community.
Speakers who shared their diverse experiences all blamed society for primarily trying to cover up sexual assault cases, parents, especially mothers who have a habit of giving their daughters herbs, warned to take to abort pregnancies, to refrain from such acts according to them, it could damage the uterus.