As the numbers of rape cases continue to increase in Liberia, the Affiliation of Child and Women’s Rights Advocate staging a three (3) day march against Rape and Gender Base Violence in Liberia.
The protest which started on August 25th, 2020, brought together Students, Youths, Civil Society Organizations CSOs, and Community Based Organizations CBOs among others, petitioning the Liberian Government to declare rape as a national emergency.
In an August 24 press release, the Affiliating Youth and Children Right Advocates stated that over 958 rape cases have been reported and that only a handful of the perpetrators have been arrested. The majority of the perpetrators are walking with impunity. Safe homes for survivors of sexual abuse and children are closed due to inadequate funding and logistics.
According to the group, they are tired of hearing political excuses.
“With all the reports on the drastic increase in sexual abuse and normalization of violence against children and women, we believe that the time is now to declare rape as a National Emergency. We have marched, we have spoken and demanded action but it looks like people with the responsibility to stop this crisis are not interested in finding solutions”.
“As young people, we do not want to live in fear. We are tired of living in constant fear of being the next sexual abuse victims or being attacked by politicians for standing up for Justice in Liberia”.
Among those calling for justice for rape victims were also mothers. Some were seen holding placards with the inscription “This Nonsense Got to Stop. Wake Up Leaders”.
CUE IN VIDEO OF WOMEN. Girls and Boys were seen on the camera shouting the slogan
“Leave My Something I Am Too Small”.
CUE IN VIDEO OF YOUTH.
For her part, Former President of Liberia Madam Ellen Johnson Sirleaf says, the cases of rape in Liberia are on the increase and that the need for protesting was not a wrong idea for activists.
According to Madam Sirleaf, rape has always been a problem before in and after her administration. So there is a need for action to be taking.
She spoke to reporters on Thursday the last day of the three (3) days protest.