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Friday, June 14, 2019

The Menace - Child Abuse

Written by: Muoka Chibuzor G

Once upon a time, a day came when men were embittered with the issue of childlessness, and every one of them was forced to plead with the Creator of the universe. After several years of prayer, the Creator replied them saying: “I have seen an evil that haunts the innocent infants of man. Child abuse is an ungodly and inhumane act. Humans are to desist from it!” Having heard the unhappy words of the creator, all the men who were guilty, acknowledged their mistake and sought for forgiveness, and when the Creator saw the sincerity of their hearts and attainment of maturity, He forgave them and blessed them with the priceless gift of a child.

According to Wikipedia, child abuse is defined as physical, sexual, and psychological maltreatment; including the neglect of a child or children, especially, by a parent or a caregiver.  It is crystal clear that the end result of child abuse is of great harm to both the victim and society. The aftermath of child abuse psychologically programs innocent children to perceive the world as evil and inhabitable. In fact, life becomes insipid, and presents no meaning, as the victims languish in intimidation and perpetual fear.

Coming down to Africa and Nigeria in particular, the prevalence of child abuse is spreading as fast as a bacterial infection. If one can harness the power of imaginations and actually transform into a powerful housefly and then visit numerous Nigerian homes, it would be heartbreaking to discover that children are being maltreated in diverse manners that evoke anger and pity. All in the name of housemaid service, naive young girls and boys who were brought to the city from rural communities are being intimidated and molested by mature men and women who assumed the paramount position of being their guardian and provider. To these children, their guardians are the only God they see and would voluntarily worship.

Some children are being sent to the streets to hawk, instead of being sent to the school to learn, and then, they walk about hopelessly both under the rain and the sun. In the process, the child gets sick and is being predisposed to several vicious predators in human stature, and this includes the bloodthirsty kidnappers and ritualists. Certain parents and guardians have broken the camels back by meting out punishments of inhumane nature to children. A certain lady was once caught applying fresh pepper to the eyes, nose, and genitals of her six-year-old house girl, and when her actions were questioned, she audaciously said; “I warned her and she woke up ten minutes past five’ O clock instead of five’ O clock.”

In the end, these victims of child abuse often suffer from severe psychological insults and then they often decide to mingle and befriend several deviants of the society who would lure them into immorality by promising them a bright future. And whereby they join the bad eggs of the society, they would work against the peaceful interest of the society, in a bid to reiterate for the evil they had experienced.

Since the family as the smallest unit of the society has been corrupted by the cankers of child abuse, it directly means that the society and the nation at large are being held to ransom by human subjugation. And if nothing is done about this, then the populace must be trekking ignorantly on the primitive path of human slavery. Consequently, the craves of man for human civilization and life modernization would hold no water and speak no volumes.

Thus, several measures must be put in place to nip the ugly menace of child abuse in the bud. Firstly, a sensitization program must be carried out in every stratum of society to enlighten the populace on the karma of child abuse.  Secondly, the government must institute stringent laws against child abuse so as to strengthen the rights of children and safeguard their bright future. Thirdly, the anti-child abuse laws must be enforced ruthlessly by concerned law enforcement agencies instituted by the government so as to bring culprits to book.

In conclusion, child abuse is of great consequences to the growth of any nation. And the greatest of all evil would only occur when good people sit and watch as evil thrives like a seed sown in fertile lands. Watching evil is consent in silence. Thus every hand must be on deck as the war against child abuse is waged without end.

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