The parliamentary select committee on inquiry into allegations of sexual violence in institutions of learning in Uganda has been furnished with names of 60 individuals who were repeatedly mentioned by learners as perpetrators of sexual violence.
This was revealed by Robinah Rwakoojo (Gomba West MP), the chairperson of the committee who said on Thursday while presenting the report that they have the names of these top sex pests who are abusing school going students including pupils in primary schools.
According to the report, the names of the alleged perpetuators will be availed to the relevant government institutions for investigation and prosecution, upon the adoption of the report on Tuesday or on request by Parliament.
“The Committee further sought to know the names of perpetuators of sexual violence in their institutions of learning and provided learners with plain sheets of paper to record the same. As a result, the Committee was furnished with names of sixty (60) individuals who were repeatedly mentioned by learners as perpetuators of sexual violence implying that they are notoriously known in the school and university communities for engaging in the vice,” the report says.
The Committee reportedly had a lengthy discussion on whether or not to publish the names of the alleged perpetuators in this report. Ultimately, it was resolved that the names be withheld in view of the attendant legal implications. The Committee also attached brief details of the cases to the report for purposes of aiding Parliament in reaching a decision.
The inquiry on sexual violence in schools arose from a motion presented to Parliament by Anna Adeke Ebaju, (National Female Youth Representative) which was instigated by the numerous and repeated media reports of gross acts of sexual violence in institutions of learning at all levels.
The Committee also found out that sexual violence in institutions of learning is majorly perpetuated by teaching staff and students/pupils. At primary leve1, 36% of the respondents reported that the male teachers and male students were prominent perpetrators, while 30% of the respondents reported male teachers, 28% reported female students and 22% reported male students as the major perpetrators of sexual violence. In universities and tertiary institutions, 42% of the respondents indicated that male lecturers were the perpetrators while 38% reported male students. Apparently, 52% of University learners have experienced a form of sexual harassment. The number of students who knew about victims or were victims was higher in secondary schools and tertiary institutions/Universities that is to say 132 (34.4%) and 135 (52.1%) students while primary schools, the number was lower since only a few respondents were able to comprehend the administered questionnaires.
The Committee also observed defilement and sexual harassment as the most prevalent forms of sexual violence in institutions of learning with 45.2% respondents from Primary schools saying that they are aware of the existence of defilement, and 41.5% of the respondents were aware of the existence of sexual harassment. In Secondary schools, 70.5% of the respondents were aware of the existence of sexual harassment while 51.5% were aware of the existence of defilement and in tertiary institutions/ Universities, 84.4% stated that they of the existence of sexual harassment. The study also revealed a high prevalence of access to pornographic videos and images in secondary schools and tertiary institutions/universities at 60.6% and, 77.3% respectively.