Thursday, 20 September 2012

Security at Safari Sevens Rugby Tournament needs to be prioritized

By Grace Mwai
As the country gears towards the Safaricom Safari Sevens Rugby Tournament set to start this Friday at Nyayo National Stadium, several issues need to be raised in regard to security of those who attend the event.
We know police are doing all they can to ensure the safety of all especially from terrorists and other petty offenders. But the main challenge lies with the organizers of the event. The issue seem to be overlooked by the media which is usually bribed and silenced by the adverts that the sponsors and organizers give them at the expense of the safety of many.
Many people are usually raped and sodomised at such events. Young and innocent girls are usually drugged and raped by marauding rapists who operate at such events. Boys too are usually sodomised.
But none of the media usually raise the issue. Past events have been reported by some media houses but we are informed they were silenced and asked not to pursue the matter further lest they lose adverts.
The classic example is a girl of a food supplying agency who was raped last year as she left the event. Safaricom made sure the story was killed in the media apart from The Standard which reported the first incident. We are informed that the organisers of the event who also happen to be chief sponsors of Nairobi Women’s Hospital made sure that the story died on the first day it appeared in the media. The sponsored threatened the hospital not to talk on the issue orelse it would lose the lucrative sponsorship it receives.
Police records show there were atleast 11 rape cases that were reported at the event last year alone but were asked not to make the issue public. Shame!
Earlier on in an another event that was being held at the Rugby field  along Ngong Road similar to the one coming on Saturday, a menstruating innocent girl was drugged and raped alongside her three friends. The issue, as usual, was hidden. Apparently, the college girl was wearing a tampon to control the menstruation. The rapists pushed it into her womb and because she was unconscious, she would not realize the issue. She and other victims were rushed to hospital where they were treated and discharged.
The tampon stayed in the womb for almost a month until when the girl visited the US for a tournament where she was operated on and removed the tampon that was rotting in the womb. Those are just a few cases that have come out. Many are usually silenced by the compromised media. They go there to drink and be given free airtime and forget to monitor and ask issues.
We urge for vigilance from other stakeholders to ensure our future generations are safe. People pay to go there to enjoy and go back to their homes safe. Safaricom must ensure their safety from the start to the end. There should be no excuse orelse, the event be closed and banned.

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