Pre-Emptive Measures Could Reduce Rape

Oshikoto regional police public relations officer Warrant-Officer Iseskar Arachab has urged women to exercise preventative behaviour to avoid falling victim to sexual crimes.

Arachab said this in the wake of two rape cases that recently took place within days of each other in the rape stricken Oshikoto Region, the first taking place at Omatara where a suspect forcefully had sexual intercourse with a 45-year-old victim without her consent. The suspect’s identity is unknown and he is still at large.

The second rape took place at Ompito village where a 21-year-old woman was raped after she walked from a cuca shop to relieve herself. A 22-year-old man was arrested and charged with rape.

Arachab urged women to take precautions when moving around at night.

“I am not saying there should be a curfew for women, but they need to refrain from walking alone in the dark and if they must do so, not to go out alone. Being in the midst of men does not necessarily mean you are safe and until you are well aware of what that man is thinking, never trust him. A pre-emptive approach can be the answer – sometimes prevention is the key,” said Arachab.

He also cited the low turnout of men at campaigns against rape and other forms of domestic violence against women as a clear indication that few men take heed of such campaigns.

“We have more women than men at our meetings. If we are going to win the fight against this vicious cycle of violence against our women and daughters, more men need to attend,” he said.

Arachab believes most women seem nonchalant when it comes to safety, labouring under the impression they can simply go wherever and whenever they wish. “Yes, it is a fact women and men have equal rights, however, women are more vulnerable to sexual crimes and other injustices. Sexual predators will have no regard for human rights – when you are being violated all your rights mean nothing,” cautioned Arachab.

According to Arachab most sexual offenders do not realise the mental scars they inflict on their victims.

“These scars are lifelong and no amount of punishment or jail time can soothe the pain, trauma, sleepless nights and heartache endured by rape victims,” he said. He conceded that rape is prevalent in the region.

“Rapists are too cowardly to attack in the open, and like all criminals they are opportunistic and only strike when the chance presents itself. Pre-emptive behaviour on the part of women could lessen the chances of their becoming victims,” he said.

Source : New Era