The Lagos State Domestic and Sexual Violence Agency, DSVA has began the provision of psychosocial support for willing sex offenders in a bid to curb sexual and gender-based violence in the society.
Mrs Lola Adeniyi,DSVA Executive Secretary disclosed that the programme which is held in sessions and groups at the Kirikiri and Ikoyi Maximum Security Custodial Centre is facilitated by a group of trained Psychologists from DSVA and the Institute of Counseling on a weekly basis where inmates are expected to take responsibilities for their actions and enlightened on healthy sexuality.
She noted that the sex offenders rehabilitation programme in partnership with the Nigerian Correctional Service, Lagos State Command and the Institute of Counselling of Nigeria is also aimed at mitigating the risk of recidivism by sex offenders.
Furthermore,offenders are also armed with peer and professional support to manage thoughts, feelings and behaviors that lead to inappropriate sexual behaviors.
It is imperative that incarcerated adult sex offenders are rehabilitated and supported to reduce the possibility of them perpetrating the same crime if eventually they are reintegrated into the society.
The inmates would also learn specialized strategies to deal with sexual addiction and sexual compulsive behaviors, amongst many other positive coping skills.
Whilst the rehabilitation program does not offer amnesty or excuse abusive acts, it seeks to reduce any reoccurrence of child sexual abuse and rape cases from sex convicts in future.
Providing Psycho-social support is in line with Governor Babajide Sanwo Olu’s commitment and resolve to provide holistic response to Sexual and Gender Based Violence in the State and this rehabilitation programme is targeted at convicts from the Maximum Security Custodial Centre, Kirikiri Apapa and Maximum Security Custodial Centre, Ikoyi .
The Lagos State Government continues to reiterate its commitment to winning the war against Domestic and Sexual Violence, as it encourages victims and survivors of these heinous crimes to take advantage of support services which can be accessed via its toll free line- 08000-333-333