The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), has adopted sexual harassment as a form of corruption.
Consequently, the anti-graft body, yesterday, handed over a letter of provincial registration as a member of the National Anti-corruption Coalition (NACC) to women-focused organisation, Heir Women Hub.
Handing the registration to the communications officer, HEIR Women Hub, Blessing Sani, at their office in Abuja, ICPC representative said the recognition is imperative as part of efforts in fighting and eradicating sexual harassment against young women in the workplace, which has become very rampant.
Personal assistant to the Director-General of ICPC, Mrs. Bunmi Olugasa and the project officer for sexual harassment in educational institutions in secondary and tertiary institutions, who stood in for the DG of ICPC, delivered the letter to HEIR Women Hub team.
Executive Director, HEIR Women Development, Añuli Aniebo Ola-Olaniyi appreciated the ICPC for sending a representative to the workshop on career barriers held in April, adding that their presence was part of the reason for the advocacy visit to ICPC.
Reiterating that the anti-corruption body considers sexual harassment a form of corruption punishable under the law just like other corrupt practices; she asked the ICPC to begin to ratify, educate and prosecute persons that sexually harass young women in the workplace.
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Project Officer, HEIR Women Hub, Blessing Ejeh, gave a rundown of the findings of the research carried out, stating that in the nearest future, they hope to go round all the states of Nigeria to conduct same research to gather findings in each state in Nigeria and what applies to them.
Olugasa appreciated the women group for their efforts in this regard and also spoke on the existing gap in sexual harassment-related cases. She said tackling the menace of sexual harassment can be equated to a relay race where one needs four strong men to achieve success, meaning many more hands need to be on deck to manage the issue of sexual harassment at workplaces.
Speaking on some of the gaps in sexual harassment, she said the clamour should be on improving the law even though violators keep finding different ways of beating the law.
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According to her, the perpetrators are motivated by the the concept of gratification of benefits, which can come in so many ways and sexual favours is one of the ways, but because it is an abuse of power, it is considered an offence.