The Civil Society Legislative Advocacy (CISLAC) has launched a mobile application named ‘Timby’ to help victims of sexual exploitation in Nigeria’s tertiary institutions.
The Executive Director of CISLAC, Auwal Musa Rafsanjani, at a Stakeholders Consultative Forum on the issue of sexual Exploitation in Tertiary Institutions in Nigeria on Wednesday in Abuja said that the Timby App was created for victims of sexual exploitation in Nigeria’s tertiary institutions to pursue psychological support and redress.
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“There is a need for all Nigerians especially victims of sexual exploitation in tertiary institutions in Nigeria to understand their rights and also speak out the while school management, anti- corruption agencies and other relevant institutions of government commit to and exhibit accountability, transparency and integrity towards putting mechanisms in place for addressing the issue which includes criminalizing sextortion and providing sanctions for perpetrators.
“On our part, CISLAC has created a trusted electronic channel which is called TIMBY App and physical complaint and reporting channels for people to pursue psychological support and redress.
“This is in line with one of Nigeria’s commitments under Open Governance Partnership (OGP), to support victims and witnesses of corrupt practices.” Rafsanjani said.
In her presentation titled “Sexual Exploitation (Sextortion) in Tertiary Institutions in Nigeria”, the Advocacy and Legal Officer of CISLAC, Bathsheba Tagwai, listed the challenges of Sexual Based Violence (SBV) to be “lack of whistle blowing culture, inadequate awareness, stigmatization of victims by the society, inadequate complain channels, widespread culture of impunity amongst others.
She said that the solution to the menace of SBV could be the use of Social and Conventional media to create awareness amongst citizens especially within selected tertiary institutions, parents, University Management and other stakeholders.
“The stereotype by society that females are the only victims of sextortion should be reconsidered because there are situations even though not so prevalent where males have been victims. Also, there are situations where the female students are the ones who approach the lecturers and offer sex in exchange for favours.
“Organizations working on ‘sextortion’ should ensure to gather facts and data around this. Reports on such issues are scarce, scanty and does not provide enough ingredients for robust research and learning. It would be great to have data driven decisions made for purposes of policy formulation,” she said.