Sexual Harassment Bill Gets A Nod From Senate

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The proposed legislation titled, ‘A Bill for an Act to Prevent, Prohibit and Redress Sexual Harassment of Students in Tertiary Educational Institutions has scaled a second reading in the house of Senate.

The bill which has been sponsored by the Deputy Senate President, Ovie Omo-Agege and Senate Leader, Abdullahi Yahaya, was debated upon on the floor of the senate, scaled second reading.

The bill has describes sexual offences as- sexual intercourse with a student or demands for sex from a student or a prospective student or intimidating or creating a hostile or offensive environment for the student by soliciting for sex or making sexual advances

Also “grabbing, hugging, kissing, rubbing, stroking, touching, pinching the breasts or hair or lips or hips or buttocks or any other sensual part of the body of a student,

Others are, sending by hand or courier or electronic or any other means naked or sexually explicit pictures or videos or sex-related objects to a student,

Lastly are- whistling or winking at a student or screaming, exclaiming, joking or making sexually complimentary or uncomplimentary remarks about a student’s physique or stalking a student.  

A fourteen-year jail term has been proposed with a minimum of five years without an option of fine has been proposed by the Senators penalty for any lecturer who is caught in the act.

Senator Omo-Agege says: “The most effective way to deal with the offence of sexual harassment in our tertiary institutions is to penalize the very impropriety of the act, with or without consent.”

Omo-Agege further adds: “An educator whose character is maligned is at liberty to sue for defamation under the law of defamation which is well-settled in our jurisprudence and needs no duplication in this bill.”

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