The Senate passes law prohibiting sexual harassment of students by educators in tertiary institutions. We thank Senator Ovie Omo-Agege, the sponsor of the bill; and over forty other Senators that co-sponsored the bill for the initiative in taking steps to stem the scandalous behaviour of educators in learning institutions in the country.
    Sexual harassment includes: Messages and remarks of sexual nature, sexual intercourse, any unwelcome sexual attention by an educator, sexually oriented demand or request amongst others. Educators should know that sexual harassment is against their professional ethics, and moral values of our society.
   By this law any educator, who participates, directs or induces others to commit any act of sexual harassment would hence be punished. Acts of sexual harassment includes but not limited to: touching any sensual part of the body of a student; making sexual complimentary or uncomplimentary remark about a student physique, sending sexually explicit pictures to students; and any form of sexual intercourse. Consent of the student is not a defence to the sexual harassment offence.
   Offenders shall be liable to not less than two years imprisonment and no option of fine irrespective of administrative sanctions of the institution. Besides; any student who makes false or malicious complaint of sexual harassment would be sanctioned by the institution.
This act is long over-due considering the damage sexual harassment has done to image of our education sector. However, we note with dismay that the Act appears to be limited to tertiary institutions.  Sexual harassment also exists in our secondary schools and the Act does not seem to have taken that into consideration. It is our view that with the passage of the law, educators must behave themselves or be punished.




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