Madagascar Set To Castrate Paedophiles After Parliament Passes Law
Madagascar’s Parliament last week approved a law which will allow for chemical, and in certain cases, surgical castration of those found guilty of raping a minor.
Sky News reported that the Bill must now be ratified and then signed into law by President Andry Rajoelina, who first raised the issue in December leading to the proposal of the new law.
International human rights groups have criticised the move, but activists in Madagascar say the law is an appropriate deterrent to curb a “rape culture”.
Madagascar’s Minister of Justice Landy Randriamanantenasoa said the law is necessary because of an increase in cases of rape against children.
She said in 2023, 600 cases of the rape of a minor were recorded, and 133 in January this year alone.
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The proposed law stipulates that surgical castration – the permanent procedure of removing one’s genitals to stop the production of sex hormones – “will always be pronounced” for those guilty of raping a child under the age of 10.
Cases of rape against children between the ages of 10 and 13 will be punished by surgical or chemical castration (not a form of sterilisation as drugs are used to inhibit hormone production).
The rape of children aged between 14 and 17 will be punished by chemical castration. Said Randriamanantenasoa said:
We wanted to protect children much more. The younger the child, the greater the punishment.
Jessica Nivoseheno of the Women Break the Silence group, which campaigns against rape and supports victims, said:
There really is a rape culture in Madagascar. We are in the process of normalising certain cases of sexual violence, also minimising the seriousness of these cases.
(The new law) is progress, because it is a deterrent punishment. This could prevent potential attackers from taking action… but only if we, as citizens, are aware of the existence and importance of this new penalty.
However, human rights group Amnesty International denounced the law as “inhuman and degrading” and said it was not in line with Madagascar’s constitutional laws.
Several countries administer chemical castration for sexual offenders, among them, South Korea and the US.
Surgical castration is rarer, though countries like Nigeria and the Czech Republic implement the procedure under their laws.
More: Pindula News