Lagos sets up helplines to report rape and child abuse

Move follows protest in Lagos

The Lagos state government has launched dedicated helplines for reporting cases of rape, child abuse and domestic violence in Lagos.

Incidents of child abuse can be reported on tel. 08085753932, 08102678442, while rape and domestic violence can be reported on 08057542266, 08102678443. The state encouraged victims or those at risk to call the authorities immediately.

The helplines were established following a demonstration over rising incidents of rape and child abuse in Lagos, on 25 November, the United Nations-backed International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.

Dressed in orange, hundreds of people marched to the office of the state's deputy governor, Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire, in the Alausa district in north Lagos. The demonstration was organised by civil society group Partnership for Justice in collaboration with a range of local aid organisations, civil society associations, and health and youth groups.

The event also marked the first anniversary of the Mirabel Centre, at the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH), which offers free treatment and counselling to rape victims. Managed by Partnership for Justice, the centre has helped 450 victims of rape since it was set up a year ago.

Over 90 per cent of its clients were girls aged between 4 and 17, and more than half of them were referred to the centre by police.