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Rape fast becoming cultural in Sierra Leone.

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Mary” was just nine years old when her childhood ended abruptly.

Three men fed her sedatives then raped her.

Her mother, who had been washing clothes in a stream near their home in Freetown, Sierra Leone’s capital, got home to find her child lying on the ground distraught, her legs and dress stained with blood.

“They put dirty clothes in my mouth and raped me,” the girl told reporters , without giving her real name.

The family reported the attack to the police and identified the rapists, but no charges were ever brought.

Thousands of children and young girls were raped last year in Sierra Leone , a silent epidemic of suffering in one of the world’s poorest countries.

According to police statistics, recorded cases of sexual and gender-based violence almost doubled last year, reaching 8,505 in a population of 7.5 million, up from 4,750 a year earlier.

And of that number, 2,579 cases , around a third , involved the rape of a minor.



But, as with the incidence of rape in almost every country, this shocking tally is almost certainly an understatement. “Mary” and her family plucked up the courage to report the crime: many do not.

We have a culture of rape in Sierra Leone,” admitted Chernor Bah of the UN’s Global Education First Initiative at a demonstration in Freetown last month where more than 500 black-clad protesters took to the streets over violence against women.

Last month, First Lady of Sierra Leone, Fatima Bio led a national campaign against rape in the capital, Freetown.

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“Our children are dying in the hospital every day, and if we give you the statistics, you’ll start crying for Sierra Leone, and if we stop this together, our children will grow up, let’s not be the ones who kill children before they do not become someone just because we want our fiancee’s money”, she said.

Just weeks before, the country had been shaken by the rape of a five-year-old girl by her 28-year-old relative.
Her attacker raped her anally, crippling her spine.

Doctors at the Aberdeen Women’s Centre in Freetown, which helps women and girls who have suffered from sexual violence and rape, said it was unlikely the child would ever be able to walk again.

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The attack sparked outrage, with many people demanding that child rapists face a lifetime behind bars, calls echoed by President Julius Maada Bio himself.

“Let me be very clear: men who rape girls deserve to be jailed for life,” Bio said as his wife launched the “Hands off Our Girls”. campaign.

Reports of rape and the sexual penetration of minors, as child rape is legally termed, have steadily increased, according to the Freetown-based Rainbo Initiative, which provides free medical services and counseling to victims of sexual and gender-based violence.

Figures collated by the centre show that in 2018, 76 per cent of rape victims were aged 15 years or younger, including babies.

The rest of the victims were aged between 16 and 20.

And every month, an average of 149 victims fell pregnant as a result of rape.

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Crime

Ugandan Woman Bags 20 years jail term for killing husband

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A Uganda High Court has sentenced a 27-year-old woman, Jackline Nakku, to 20-years in jail for murdering her husband on Valentine’s Day in 2018.

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The High Court in Mukono District in central Uganda found her guilty of murdering her husband Eric Kiddu after hitting him several times on the head with an iron bar.

After the murder Nakku attempted to make the killing appear to be the result of an attack by unknown people by screaming and running to neighbours to ask for help. His body was later found in a pool of blood with a panga and brick besides it, the Daily Monitor reported.

The couple had quarrelled shortly before the bloody encounter with a misunderstanding leading to Kiddu’s death.

Nakku was advised by the judge to appeal the sentence if she was dissatisfied as relatives of both husband and wife argued outside the court, trading accusations.

-IOL News

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Lampard Agrees to Replace Sarri

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Report says Frank Lampard will take over at Chelsea in the coming days after getting at least two years assurance in the hot-seat at Stamford Bridge.

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The need for Lampard to take over as a coach at the club where he plied his trade as a player for 13 years arose as Maurizio Sarri is on the verge of leaving Chelsea for Juventus.

The Derby boss has been given a major assurance, with the report that Roman Abramovich called him personally last week to tell him he would have at least two transfer windows to demonstrate his worth.

Given that Chelsea are currently serving a two-window transfer ban, that would mean Lampard would definitely stay for the 2019-20 and 2020-21 seasons.

The Blues will need to pay a substantial compensation package to Derby to get Lampard and will use the money they receive from their own compensation package from Juventus.

It has been claimed this week that Derby — in a desperate bid to keep their manager after falling short of securing a place in the Premier League — have offered Lampard a new deal, but he is unlikely to rebuff the advances of his old club.

Chelsea are keen to bring in Lampard, knowing that he is a hugely popular choice with a fanbase who were frustrated last season by Sarri’s management despite winning the Europa League and finishing in the top four of the Premier League.

The Blues have also sold their talisman this summer in Eden Hazard, whose deal could eventually be worth up to £150million.


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