Be it commendable efforts or another gimmick, the Nigerian Senate on Tuesday, July 7, passed the much-awaited 'Sexual Harassment Bill' in what will go down in history as the validation of mounting agitation from gender-based groups.
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The bill, which was passed by the upper chamber amid rising violence against female gender, seeks to protect students against randy lecturers in various Nigerian higher institutions and other learning centres.
It was sponsored by the deputy Senate president, Senator Ovie-Omo Agege (Delta Central) and co-sponsored by 105 other senators.
Although the bill is yet to be assented by the lower chamber, House of Representatives, Legit.ng sheds more light on what Nigerians should expect from it.
What does sexual harassment mean according to the bill?
1. Having a carnal knowledge of students.
2. Demanding sex from students or prospective students.
3. Intimidating students by making sexual advances.
4. Helping someone else to harras students.
The Penalty: How does the sexual harassment bill operate?
Without any iota of doubt, the sexual harassment bill will curb the mounting cases of sexual violence against women in tertiary institutions. So, lecturers who engage in the below sexual advances will face the wrath of the law.
1. Lecturers who sexually harass students will face 2-14 year jail term.
2. Lecturers who wink at students will face a likely 2-year jail.
3. Lecturers who make sexually complementary and uncomplimentary remarks about students face 2-year jail.
4. Lecturers who send sex-inducing pictures, video or message to students will face a 2-year jail term.
Earlier, Legit.ng reported that the sexual harassment prohibition bill pitched the Youth Alive Foundation (YAF) against the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).
While YAF was in support of the bill, ASUU was proposing a review of existing laws on sexual harassment in tertiary institutions rather than formulating new ones.
ASUU national president, Professor Biodun Ogunyemi, stated this at a public hearing in the Nigerian Senate on Monday, February 17, organised by the Senate committee on judiciary, human rights and legal matters headed by Senator Bamidele Opeyemi from Ekiti state.
The bill had scaled 2nd reading at the Senate on in November 2019. It seeks to prohibit sexual harassment in tertiary educational institutions and imposes stiff punitive measures on perpetrators.
#Sexforgrades: Who should be held responsible; students, lecturers or society? | Legit TV