Liberia’s Child Rape Victims

January 21, 2007

Liberia’s Child Rape Victims

From the BBC, a publication which runs circles around the pathetic mainstream media of the U.S.:

Africa’s first female president, Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, came to power in Liberia a year ago, promising to tackle the problem of rape, which had become increasingly common during the previous 14 years of conflict in the country.

Will Ross has been travelling around Liberia to assess whether that war on rape is being won.

“I like to turn lemon into lemonade – make a bad situation into a good one,” declared the smartly dressed woman as she entered the room.

Annie Demen is Liberia’s deputy minister of gender, a post set up to empower women.

She also heads the taskforce charged with stamping out sexual violence in Liberia. But there was not much to smile about when I turned up later that day to interview her.

News had just reached the office that an 11-year-old girl called Janjay had died after being raped six months ago.

Janjay’s mother said the rape had left her so badly injured she was incontinent and had to wear nappies.

I know domestic violence and rape have their own social causes in every country, but besides mental health disorder or just complete social instability, what the f@%k causes a man to rape a child?

Now, I have asked plenty of people here to try to shed some light on why a man would rape a five-year-old or even a baby and, after the initial shrug of the shoulders, there is often a whisper or two about superstition or belief.

They think it will bring them good luck, one man told me.

In South Africa people have struggled to dispel the belief that raping a baby helps prevent or cure HIV Aids. And it is possible that a similar belief exists here.

There are plenty of misconceptions of HIV/AIDS in the world, especially in Africa, but ‘raping a baby helps prevent of cure HIV/AIDS’ is just too much for me. Go read the rest of the article here… I’m trying to come up with something smart and witty but I just can’t.