‘Get consent to have sex’

Kauna Shikwambi

Clinical psychologist Shaun Whittaker has urged Namibians to get a firm and loud ‘yes’ before engaging in sexual activities over the festive season.

This comes as we head into the peak of festive season, with increased chances of sexual harassment and rape.

“Namibia is dominated with patriarchy and the issue of consent is taken lightly as there is not enough respect for personal boundaries and individuality,” Whittaker said in a recent interview with The Namibian.

Consent is an agreement between two parties or more to engage in sexual activity which should be given loudly and firmly by both parties.

He further said it is very important to take extra precautions and set the boundaries from the start.

“Be careful with who you engage with throughout the festive season as this is the time for festivities and social gatherings but it is also a time of great danger and chaos, where many indulge in alcohol consumption.”

Whittaker said there is a history of spiking of drinks across the country, hence the need to be extra cautious during social gatherings.

Sharing similar sentiments, deputy commissioner of the Namibian Police Kauna Shikwambi has urged all members of the public not to leave their drinks unattended and to be safe at all times over the festive season.

“Do not walk alone, especially at night and avoid shortcuts in the riverbeds. Always inform family and friends of your whereabouts, be vigilant and follow your instincts at all times,” Kauna said.

She added that anyone who feels their rights have been violated can open a case, call the toll free number 10111 and contact any police officer that is within their reach at the time.

“Law enforcement officers will continue to maintain law, order and protect life, as well as property while investigating any alleged offences and reports from the general public throughout the festive season,” she said.

Relationship adviser Ngamane Karuaihe-Upi urged people not to allow themselves to be used during the festive season.

“Whatever you indulge in, make sure it’s something that you would like to do and one should not be peer pressured into anything,” Karuaihe-Upi said.

He noted that honesty is the best policy and reminded the public that the consequences of their actions during the festive season will follow them into the next year.

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