Is Stella Oduah finally lending her weight to Women’s issues?

Stella Oduah
Stella Oduah, former minister for aviation and current senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria hasn’t exactly been the poster child for excellent government stewardship. Her time as minister was characterized by a dismissal and multiple charges of corruption and embezzlement, charges she tried to refute by claiming that she was being headhunted because she is a woman in a government overrun with men looking for a scapegoat. Her time in the senate has been largely unremarkable, but it seems like things are about to change.
Two days ago news broke about a professor at Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU) Mr. Richard
Akindele was allegedly recorded soliciting for sex from a female student in exchange for grades, the country roundly condemned his actions and challenged government to finally take definitive action on the menace of sexual harassment of students in tertiary institutions. Stella Oduah, literally the last person anyone expected to speak up on the matter has just released a statement. We’ve reproduced it verbatim for your perusal.
My attention has been drawn to an audio recording reportedly between an unidentified female student and a professor in one of the respected tertiary institutions in our country.
The culture of sexual assault in our tertiary institutions must be abolished. My position has always been that we must take on this issue from the top: Lecturers who assault female students must be publicly shamed, and captured in a database which would ensure that they would not be able to teach or take up employment at other educational institutions.
We must also encourage more female students on our campuses to speak up by creating mechanisms that protect them from victimisation.
Provocative dressing should never be grounds for justifying assault. Institutions are free to enforce codes of conduct, dressing and decorum as they deem fit. This must also be done with respect for the constitutional rights of students.
This conversation must not be swept under the rug. The University should investigate this issue and deal decisively with the accused person if found guilty.
As a woman, mother, and Senator who serves as vice chairman of the committee on women affairs, I have continued to put the issue of sexual assault in our campuses on the front burner. We would not relent until we our educational institutions become safe spaces for the development of our girls and not a den of sexual predators.
Find a video of my contribution on this issue on the floor of the Senate. Link below:

It is difficult to take Stella’s new found activism at face value considering we are in the last lap of what will prove to be a trying election year for everyone and Stella might just be leveraging this poor girl’s situation to get some much needed goodwill. But we applaud her none the less for taking a stand.
Now we just hope we aren’t forced to eat our words.

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