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HURIWA backs chemical castration of rapists in Kaduna

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Kaduna State Governor, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai. Photo: TWITTER/GOVKADUNA

The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) has thrown its weight behind Kaduna State Government’s controversial law recommending castration for convicted rapists but suggested the use of chemicals.

It, however, castigated the Executive Secretary of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), Anthony Ojukwu, for kicking against the law.

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The National Coordinator of HURIWA, Emmanuel Onwubiko, and the National Media Affairs Director, Zainab Yusuf, in a statement yesterday, slammed the commission for its alleged defence of sexual offenders.

HURIWA said Ojukwu had described the castration penalty as distortion and negation of human rights and called on the Governor Nasir el-Rufai of Kaduna to jettison it.

The NHRC scribe reportedly said, there was no justification whatsoever for torture, irrespective of the circumstances, adding that legalisation of the castration penalty would be tantamount to legislating torture and degradation.

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In the light of Ojukwu’s stance, the non-governmental organisation accused the NHRC of speaking for sex offenders despite its responsibility of defending rape victims.

“HURIWA condemns the haste by NHRC to speak for criminal rapists, just as we strongly recommend the implementation of chemical castration of rapists as a punishment to be created by law. Once this is done, it can not be erroneously presumed as torture, just the same way that capital punishment is permitted for capital offences,” HURIWA stated.

Citing the legality of chemical castration in the United States, HURIWA restated its vote of confidence in the new law, while raising concerns over the ethics and safety of the procedure.

According to HURIWA, while there is a need to create stiffer penalties for sex offenders, the safety of the procedure is a vital issue.

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