By Tina S. Mehnpaine
In continuation of the protest against rape in the country, the Monrovia Cycling Club has joined by creating awareness on the menace that has affected so many children and women in the country in recent times.
The exercise under the theme, ‘We Ride Against Rape’, began on Saturday, August 29, 2020, at the Samuel Kanyon Doe (SKD) Sports Complex in Paynesville and continued in Central Monrovia.
Like the anti-rape protesters, the cyclists want the government to enforce stringent measures that will discourage people from engaging in raping children and gang-raping women. On September 3, 2020, a fresh report emerged from Zekepa, lower Nimba County speaking of a woman suffering gang-rape.
Arthur King, President of the group, said rape is a national concern and, as such, there is a need for everyone, regardless of association, to join and tackle it.
“Our intention is the same as every Liberian who supports the anti-rape campaign, as rape is everybody’s business, no matter where you come from and what dialect you speak. We must all work collectively to fight against rape,” Arthur said.
He said with the increase in the number of rape cases across the country, especially the 3 years old baby, on who razor blade was used to be penetrated by a 15-year-old boy, no sound person can remain in his or her comfort zone without joining a call on our government to implement laws that will deter people with the intent of rape.
He said that rape cases have increased because of lack of punitive measures put in place by the government.
“We are calling on the government to act swiftly on rape issues; People should face life imprisonment, especially those caught in statutory rape involving babies and young children,” King said.
Giving his view about the call for castration Kings said: “I personally do not support the death penalty or castration for rapists, what I am suggesting is life imprisonment for those found guilty of the act. But whatever the majority of the citizens will come up with, I wholeheartedly give my support to it.”
”The Club is not only passionate about bicycle riding and keeping fit but is also concerned about the society to give back to the communities. It is our hope that we can create more awareness to encourage young kids to learn, enjoy, and become more professional bicycle riders while supporting other impactful ventures,” Kings noted.
“It is so horrible to hear someone rape a 3-month old baby and a three-year-old girl. That’s unthinkable, and if we have punitive measures in place, where people will go to jail for life or any harsh punishment, people will begin to understand that rape is something that is not good and nobody will want to venture into it.”
The Cycling Club was founded in November 2019, and members ride every Saturday morning as a form of exercise. This small group, originally called “Bikers”, is also involved in speaking against societal ills.