Every day, women are sexually harrased in offices. These women are our wives, mothers, daughters, cousins, nieces,sisters...
Often it is the boss. Often they have to put up with boss's stupid behaviour because jobs don't grow on trees.
When women tell us, we somehow find an excuse to blame them. May be it is the way she was dressed, we will say. May be she became too familiar with the boss and the boss took advantage. May be she should have kept a safe distance. Whatever.
But sex pests are very persistent. Only an insult, bodily harm or something grievous or shaming publicly can stop them.
Yet very few women have the voice and the courage to speak up to the beasts.
- 1 Caretaker alleged to have defiled girl aged four arrested
- 2 Equity Bank now valued at more than Sh1 trillion
- 3 Machakos man jailed for life after being framed for rape freed
- 4 PEV rape victims get Sh16m payment
A combination of poverty, and the way we bring up our women ensures they keep quiet against their will.
Every day, many women are raped, some escape unhurt, some die. If you survive a rape ordeal, the scar lives with you forever.
These rapes, attempted rapes and such, are sometimes committed by the men the women are familiar with. A colleague, a relative, an ex...
They can't report to the police stations, because they will be laughed at, sadly, even by the female police, who certainly are unprofessional and grew up in a culture that condones rape that we all grew up in. Some women can't even speak to their friends.
"What were you doing in his house drunk and at night?" We ask.
As men, the primary reason we are afraid of jails is because of the common stories of rape we hear.
To be raped is to be violated. Why can't some men understand this?
The reason for this rant is that on Sunday, Esther Passaris claimed that Equity CEO made advances on her 10 years ago when she approached Equity for some support. When she turned him down, her woes with that wonderful initiative of Adopt-a-Light begun.
At this point, Mwangi is innocent and until we hear from him, what Passaris has made are allegations. You may hate her. You may question her person. Whatever.
What you have no right to is to downplay such allegations and even worse dismiss them.
Sexual harassment is a real and existential nightmare for women.
The comments on her post tell all about our attitudes towards rape: real miserable attitude.
Passaris has the privilege to come out. She is educated. You can say she is wealthy. Hence the privelege. If we shout her down, what chance do poor and hapless women have in the hands of tyrannical bosses and randy colleagues who feel entitled to such women by virtue of their position.
Guys, stop forcing yourselves on women. Don't take advantage of drunk women.
Talking to women and seducing them when sober is not as difficult as we assume. Even me, the shyest human being on planet earth can talk to a woman and convince her without using underhand tactics. STOP.
WOMEN ARE HUMAN BEINGS.