When Is Rape Considered Rape? (Opinion)

Gold Nne

The week has been filled with gruesome details of different rape and sexual harassment stories from women and men alike. The entertainment industry seems to champion it all.

The wicked act perpetrated by the evil persons who raped and murdered 22-year-old Vera Uwaila Omozuwa, who sought the tranquility of her church in Benin City, south southern Nigeria, as a place to study and probably meditate, has stirred up conversations from every angle.

The young lady must have chosen the church as her safe haven, away from the harsh conditions in the world, and she was sadly ambushed, her dignity taken away by multiple ravagers with disregard for women and murdered in the process.

It is important to understand that many young men have raped a woman in their lifetime without fully understanding and grasping that they are rapists.

Here are some instances of rape.

- If you are in a relationship, married or dating, you start making out with your spouse or partner and after kissing, foreplay you do not want to proceed to penetrative sex and your partner cajoles, manipulates you to go ahead, and you let them have their way with you, that classifies as rape.

- If you are friends with someone and the person constantly manipulates you emotionally to have sex with them, cries constantly, makes you feel bad about yourself for not allowing them have their way with you, touches you inappropriately and probably punishes you emotionally till you succumb to their emotional blackmail and have sex with them, that is rape.

- If you are in a public vehicle and someone gropes you, brings out their member and starts fondling it while looking at you, making you uncomfortable by being unnecessarily close to you, touching your laps or legs, that is sexual assault and it should be reported, not endured or taken lightly. Reporting and exposing most molesters could curb the increase in rape in Nigeria.

The Minister of Women Affairs, Dame Pauline Tallen, in 2019, revealed that about 2 million Nigerians are raped every year, which sums up to about 5,480 rape cases daily in Nigeria alone. This is alarming!

Omozuwa's death has increased the conversations about rape, not just on social media but on the streets. Many have staged peaceful protests in Lagos and Abuja, demanding a proper punishment for rapists and molesters.

Some conversations which have sparked outrage on social media, Twitter especially, are the topics of consent, self-control and the question, "When is rape, rape?"

Happenings Media