ILOILO CITY -- The Iloilo Police Provincial Office (IPPO) reported a decline in cases of rape and violence against children in 2018.
IPPO data showed that 143 cases was reported in 2018, a 36 percent lower than the 194 recorded in 2017.
Cases of violence against children also dropped by 22 percent as 387 was recorded in 2018 compared to the 474 in 2017, the IPPO data bared.
Most of the violence against children cases occur in the form of physical abuse with 213 recorded in 2018, followed by the other acts of abuses with 97 and acts of lasciviousness with 64.
Police Lieutenant Ma. Liza Nofuente, chief of Women and Children Protection Desk (WCPD) of IPPO, said the reported cases mostly occur at the victims’ residence.
She said the IPPO conducts symposium in schools and communities to inform the children of their rights.
“Touching rules” which teach kids not to allow anyone to touch the private parts of his or her body, among others, are relayed to the children.
“We gather the children and inform them to report to a trusted adult and to the police any acts that were committed to them that are against their will,” she said in a phone interview on Saturday.
Despite the decline, the IPPO and the non-government organization Cameleon Association Inc. believe that there are still abused children who are afraid to come forward.
“Most of the children remain silent because they feel that they are less powerful than adults, or they are obliged to obey their parents,” Japhet Grace Moleta, Cameleon’s advocacy officer said in an interview.
She said most perpetrators of rape and violence against children are victims’ acquaintances.
“Perpetrators see an opportunity to attack when the mother or a trusted adult is away. Most cases happen at residential places given the economic conditions where an extended family shares under one roof,” she said.
Both the IPPO and Cameleon Association Inc. continue its efforts to empower the victims to speak up and break the cycle and stop child rape and abuse. (PNA)