The growing number of reports of rape and sexual abuse of children has prompted many lawmakers around the world to develop policies to address this pressing issue.
The house of representatives previously rejected castration as a punishment for a rapist based on what would happen to a female rapist.
However, the Kano state House of Assembly has recently begun the process of further amending its law to make castration a punishment for rape offenders.
This has generated a lot of controversy, but a critical look at these countries will provide a deep test of punishment.
It is to be noted that castration can be Surgical or Chemical.
Surgical castration involve the loss of testicles. This procedure applies to males only while Chemical castration is used to reduce sexual urges.A drug is used here to reduce sexual drives, compulsive sexual fantasies and capacity for sexual arousal.
Can a female be chemically castrated? Yes, it effects on a female is the same as a male though there is little research about chemically lowering female’s sex drive since most research focuses on the opposite sex.
Now let’s look at this countries that have enacted such law:
- Indonesia – Indonesia’s parliament on October 2016 passed law authorising chemical castration following a number of high profile cases of child sexual abuse in the country. The first man sentenced to chemical Castration in 2019 said he would prefer an increase in prison time or even the death penalty.
- Czech republic – The Czech Republic practice surgical Castration for sex offenders. The law was introduced in 1966. According to official figures, 85 people underwent surgical castration in the Czech Republic between 2000 and 2011. However this practice has drawn strong criticism from rights groups.
- Ukraine – Ukraine’s parliament on July 2019 approves measure to chemically castrate rapists. The legislation will potentially apply to individuals aged between 18 and 65 found guilty of raping or sexually abusing minors.
- Alabama – Alabama is a Southeastern US state. It signed into law a bill that requires some convicted paedophiles to undergo chemical castration. The bill was signed into law by Governor Kay Ivey in June 2019.
If these countries have legalised castration in order to reduce offending, this may be plausible on the grounds of individual rehabilitation, but we may still need more evidence to establish that it will be effective as a general deterrent.