Young woman harnesses social media to fight child sex abuse
The public outrage at the Sebina BDP councilor who impregnated a 16- year -old schoolgirl spurred her to action.
Social activist, Tumie Mohoasa wanted to do something beyond just being a spectator and beyond keyboard bravery so she started a Facebook group of women and men against sexual abuse of children.
A few days later after the breaking of the horrific Sebina saga, a social media campaign to get the offending councilor and his conniving minister of education skills and development to relieve themselves of their duties dubbed #Ishallnotforget was launched.
Across the nation many adopted the hashtag into their own language
Over the weekend men and women congregated at the African Mall to discuss ways in which to get their voices heard against child abuse.
Speaking to The Voice in an interview, Mohoasa said, “I was outraged at the turn of events as the Sebina saga unfolded and I wanted to do something beyond just being a spectator just keyboard bravery. There is a rot in our society and it was high time we acted.
Mohoasa said she was inspired to act by how eager Batswana were to trend the’ Bring Back Our Girls’ hashtag, which was about kidnapped Nigerian girls.
“ With a problem so close to home, it was only right that we throw our weight behind the cause’ She said
And indeed Batswana did exactly that as by Wednesday, 14,162 members had adopted already adopted the hashtag.
Many more had indicated their support and offered their expertise.
Pledges continue to pour in from various quarters to mobilize groups in various towns and villages around the country as young, old, prominent and all members of society came together to discuss how to end child abuse.
Songstress Kearoma Rantao said, “We shall not stop protecting our girls; we are awakened to stand up as parents, sisters, brothers mothers and fathers to these girls. We can only show we care about them by giving them an opportunity to learn for the betterment of their future.”
Father of three, Bokete Mokgosi, echoed Rantao’s sentiments when he said, “The total disregard and silence on child abuse is a clear indication of how prevalent it is and the many victims it has claimed. This issue needs to be addressed and confronted by every Motswana especially men”. Women alone cannot win this fight.”
Mokgosi went on to encourage other men not to sit back, but take the lead in contributing to this noble cause.
“It has been a longtime coming and we owe it to our children.”
The wave that has swept FB has included solidarity with many changing their profile pictures and putting up the black backdrop to indicate their mourning state and blue ribbons.
Since the start of the campaign each day there has been a milestone set so as to keep the momentum.
Another concerned father, Tiego Mpho who shared a post referring to a speech by President Barack Obama during the 148th commencement ceremony at Howard University on May 7, 2016 to share his support and approval of the campaign.
“You see, change requires more than righteous anger. It requires a programme, and it requires organizing. We remember Dr. King’s soaring oratory, the power of his letter from a Birmingham jail, the marches he led. But he also sat down with President Johnson in the Oval Office to try and get a Civil Rights Act and a Voting Rights Act passed. … “Barack Obama messages pertaining to the campaign has also provided for much reflection of encouragement.
It is this encouragement that Mohoasa together with other organisers of the campaign such as Obakeng Matlou and Batho Motlhake are banking on to continue with this noble cause.
“It is not about Sebina, it is beyond that, she said.
“As a mother I have to ask myself if I have done everything to protect my children, I have to believe there are many more parents out there that feel the same. We need to empower our children to be able to say no to undesirable situations. We need to create spaces that encourage our children to be able to turn to us for advice always.”
Though the group members are mindful of obstacles they will face, they are determined to continue engaging in creative ways to get the message across.
“We ought to nurture young people who will be in a position to make sound choices. So let us not ever forget of the role/part we can play in building a society whose moral fiber is strong. Adults should be adults and children, children. #ISHALLNOTFORGET,” she quips.