13.02.2020 at 09h42
Cameroonian novelist Felix Mbetbo has released a new book recounting the experiences of rape survivors in Cameroon while also calling for hard punishments against the perpetrators.
‘Coupez Leurs le Zizi’ is a 138-page book that seeks to break the silence on rape and push survivors to denounce the perpetrators. The book was launched in Yaounde on Thursday, February 6 at the Institut Français.
The author said he was inspired from his experience talking to young girls who were shy to open up on violence they had suffered.
According to statistics by Unicef, 60 percent of girls between the ages of 15 and 19 have been sexually violated with 40 percent of them not opening up while percent of them admitted to have been sexually violated while they were pregnant
It is in a bid to break the silence that Felix Mbetbo launched a call online for survivors to share their experiences
‘I was shocked with the tons of reactions I received online from young Cameroonian girls who had been sexually violated,’ Felix Mbetbo said.
To him, rape is a national crisis and the culture is gradually creeping in the society and thus must be tackled at all levels, the author said. Thus, publishing the book to hi mis part of a therapy and a step to healing the wounds and scars the survivors still carries but he stressed society must take a step forward to bring the perpetrators to book.
On the popular opinion that rape is caused by poor dressing habits, Felix Mbetbo dismissed the assertion saying at no moment did survivors testify their dressings were a cause for concern when they were sexually violated. In a scientific approach, the author demonstrates that there was no correlation between rape and the dressing habits of the survivors.
To him, the responsibility and burden lies on the shoulder of the perpetrators who according to him need a psychosocial therapy in addition to punitive measures which he suggests should be meted out against them.