A research fellow at the University of Cape Coast, Dr. Mike Boakye-Yiadom has urged Ghanaian men to join in the fight against the sexual abuse of women across the world.
According to him, the issue of sexual harassment is on the rise and the agenda to kick against it must not be left for women only.
Speaking at a public lecture at Webster University on the #MeToo movement, Dr. Boakye Yiadom said sexual harassment policies within institutions must be implemented.
“Some men have sisters, some have spouses so if it’s about women, it’s also about men. Most victims are hesitant to report and many who report, prefer to speak with family and friends instead of law enforcement agencies. After almost twenty decades this hasn’t changed.
There are some aspects of Ghanaian culture that make it difficult for victims to report. Almost every university and all the colleges of education in Ghana have sexual harassment policies which must be implemented,” he noted.
A psychologist, Dr. Funke Baffour, bemoaned the culture in Africa which prevents the voices of women from being heard.
According to her, statistics have shown that every twenty-six seconds a woman in Africa is sexually abused.
“These statistics are only ten years old. How many people have the voice? We are living on a continent where your voices are not allowed to be heard. The voices of women are not heard because if you talk you won’t get married, be a good wife, be good women and you will be accused of bringing shame on to the family.”
Chair of African Diplomacy at the University of Johannesburg, Dr. Yolanda Spies says the Africans continent must embrace the fight which has been tag METOO campaign.
Dr. Spies believes the campaign must involve people from all walks of life, hence it must evolve from #METOO to #USTOO.
“My plea is that the #METOO movement which has gone such a long to inspire women not just in the United States but across the globe should be embraced. Also the #USTOO movement must be embraced. We must make this our problem and not a man versus woman problem. Its problem of humanity, we must teach our children, girls or boys to respect themselves and treat others with the same respect.”
A radio host, Esther Armah, blamed the media for the increasing cases of sexual abuse. According to her, a notion has created that females are responsible for the sexual arousal of men.
“What manifests in the media is the notion women and girls are responsible for the sexual feelings of men so if a man is arouse meaning a woman caused it and that it the narrative that permeates by which these stories are treated by radio hosts, producers, camera crews and writers. The challenge is the places of authority also dominates the way in which these stories are told and we know because of these high profile stories that do come to us, the issue at Ejisuman SHS is one where teachers sexually harass female students,” she said.