Editor's Comment

Protect girl-child

IT’S common now to hear stories of underage girls being sexually abused by known people in communities.
But the thought of seeing a girl-child being subjected to having sex with a dog is as painful as it is nauseating.
Reference is made to news that a 13-year-old girl in Kitwe with a hearing impairment was allegedly forced to have sex with a dog by four young boys in her neighbourhood.
It is alleged that the boys held her hands and legs before mounting the canine on her.
According to her mother, the girl was on her way to her grandmother’s place when the boys dragged her to a playing field.
Any mother would be hurt to have to find answers as to why such barbaric acts should be happening to her child. It’s a case that clearly defines how the moral fibre of society has been ripped.
Although in this case Copperbelt Police Commissioner Charity Katanga says according to police investigations the dog only scratched the girl on the back, we feel there should be recourse to the trauma the girl has suffered as a result.
“Preliminary investigations that the girl had carnal knowledge with a dog is not true as the dog that scratched the victim is female,” Mrs Katanga said.
The emotional scar the girl has been made to endure far outweighs the mere regret the four boys would be feeling following their detention before being released.
It should be noted that the fact that the girl was subjected to such level of harassment, the police should not just dismiss it as if it was just child’s play.
Children are vulnerable and face all kinds of abuse in townships everyday but much of it is thrown out under the guise of lack of concrete evidence.
Such psychological trauma that girls go through at the hands of boys and men alike in townships results in them not opening up to what they go through.
Abused young girls end up having a distorted view of sexuality even as they grow into adulthood.
It is the role of society to protect the girl-child from such vices so that they do not fear to move freely.
Parents need to make sure that girls are security-conscious wherever they go and report any harassment by boys and men.
It is a moral obligation also for fathers to teach their boys about the danger of bullying young girls or worse still subjecting them to sexual activities.
Young people need to know that there are laws which limit how far they can go in expressing their right to play with the opposite sex.
Boys sometimes do certain things because they copy the abuse some men render to women in communities.
As much as it is difficult to avoid boys and girls interacting in communities where they live, parents should be alert to what could go wrong and ruin lives of the girls.
The Church should also play an important role in the lives of children through Sunday school so that they grow up to understand that it is unlawful to abuse girls in any form just like they would not like themselves to be abused as young people.
Children, especially boys, degenerate to this level of thinking when they do not have role models to teach them morals and learn to respect human beings.
However, we commend the police for opening an inquiry into the matter so that justice can prevail for the girl who was allegedly abused.

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