Report sexual abuse cases


THE media over the years have highlighted the issue of sexual abuse, especially within families through its report mainly from court decisions.
Despite the numerous reports that have been made in the past couple of months, we are certain there are many cases that continue to go unreported.
We believe we need a multi- faceted approach to tackle this menace.
We commend the special parliamentary committee on gender-based violence (GBV) chaired by Alotau MP Charles Abel for the tabling of its first report that discusses the impact of GBV in Papua New Guinea and call for action by Government as an urgent priority.
The report captures the committee’s first set of findings and recommendations from their ongoing inquiry into GBV in PNG.
It includes more than 70 recommendations for consideration by different government agencies.
We will highlight the recommendations in details next week.
In the meantime, for the many media reports, PNG really needs a better framework for helping victims and engendering a more conducive environment that will encourage victims of such crimes to report abuses.
Rather than blaming the victims, we need to provide victims with psychological help they need to overcome the trauma.
Family members should stand up for the victims and encourage them to report these crimes.
Family members should not protect the perpetrators.
Family members should name and shame those who commit such crimes and not worry about feeling embarrassed because the only person in the wrong is the person committing the crime, but if there is a cover up, then the family members doing so should be blamed as well.
Over the past couple of weeks, there has been numerous news reports of children in PNG being sexually assaulted by fathers, grandfathers, brothers, cousins and stepfathers.
Reading the news articles and reports was indeed stomach cringing and makes one feel nauseated.
Clearly, something is wrong and we should be brave enough to admit that something has to be done. It is most disturbing when the girls who look up to their fathers, grandfathers, brothers and uncles for protection, love and care end up being assaulted by them.
Most of the time, family members are complicit in concealing such incidents for fear on embarrassment and due to economic factors.
Besides the physical trauma that is caused to a young child, the mental trauma is also equally or possibly more painful.
The psychological effects of being assaulted by someone one looks up to as a protector will cause lasting damage.
Victims of sexual crimes tend to suffer from low self-esteem, suicidal thoughts and sometimes even see themselves as being in the wrong and all of this is compounded by the fact that the perpetrator is a family member.
The Government had implemented a more complete legal architecture to deal with such sexual crimes against children, but it is not working.
But with a dedicated police unit in place to deal with such crimes, victims now should be encouraged to report such crimes because the law is in the right place.
It is heartbreaking to see family members sexually assault their children and abuse their children and forever destroy their lives.
We believe there should be no justification for such outrageous and wicked acts.
Men with ravenous sexual desires that know no boundaries to the extent of sexually preying on their own children or anyone else’s that matter should face the full wrath of the law.
We look forward to the implementation of at least half of the 70 recommendation