Raymond Ozoji, Awka
The Police Officers’ Wives’ Association (POWA) has organised a two-day campaign rally against all forms of child molestation, drug abuse, cultism and other anti-social tendencies meted out on children in Anambra state.
POWA led by its national president and wife of the Inspector-General of Police Princess Asmau Ndayako Idris combed the streets of Awka with placards bearing various inscriptions portraying POWA’s condemnation of criminality meted out on children in the state.
Addressing a crowd of men, women and children who thronged the Awka mini stadium, the president of POWA stated that drug abuse and cultism were rampant in the urban centres. She said that it was the responsibility of wives and mothers to organise the public awareness on the dangers of child molestation, drug abuse and child molestation.
According to the POWA president, drug and other substance abuse cause mental breakdown, physical illness, wild anti-social behaviours, criminal activities, adding that abusers of illicit drugs and substances also carry out nefarious activities like rape, disorderly conduct and mostly become street urchins and destitutes.
She maintained that cultism disrupts school calender, inflicts violence and bloodshed and equally has far-reaching social and economic consequences while child molestation has been on the increase in the society. The wife of the IGP expressed deep concern that childen were being subjected to all forms of sexual abuse, domestic violence, forced labour, child-trafficking, to mention a few. She noted that public awareness and campaigns would help stem the tide of criminality on children while appealing to parents to device means to instruct their children and wards early in life on the dangers of anti-social activities. According to her, schools and faith-based organisations have the capacities to intervene to stem the tide of social ills in the country.
Wife of Deputy-Inspector General of Police and Zonal Coordinator of POWA Lolo Chioma Ntomchukwu in her speech decried the fact that most men and women were in the habit of violating minors. She maintained that such acts were against the rights of the children being violated. Mrs. Ntomchukwu however admonished men to control their libidos to curtail sexual molestation on minors stressing that cases of rape, forceful penetration and other forms violation were on the increase in recent times while urging parents to monitor their kids to ascertain strange behaviours in them.
One of the guest speakers and state commander of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency in Anambra state (NDLEA) Mr. Sule Momodu suggested that parents should talk to their children about the dangers of drug and substance abuse and the dire consequences thereafter. He said children should be encouraged not to join bad gangs but be encouraged to participate in school activities while emphasizing the need for all police schools to have press clubs, literary and debating society, drug-free clubs and the like to engage the minds of the children meaningfully.
The Anambra NDLEA boss however appealed to the POWA president to ensure that all the police schools have drug-free clubs, teach drug education, ensure that environment where schools are situated are drug-free while ensuring also that teachers are not drug abusers.