Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Bestiality: Now, some Nigerians are happy sleeping with animals!




Semiu with a she-goat and the graphic illustration of a woman in a romance with a dog 
With the growing cases of some Nigerians making love to animals as well as reports of animals and humans giving birth to monstrous creatures, EMMANUEL ADENIYI examines the social factors that make such people abandon natural lovemaking with humans for zoophilic sexual relationships.

HAVING been caught pants down “making love” to a donkey at Umuhu, Eha-Amufu in Isi-Uzo Local Government Area of Enugu State recently, Anayochukwu Okarih, meaning (let’s continue asking God) must have wearied God with his many demands for adventure.
Seeking adventure is not bad, provided it does not run foul of societal normative behaviours.
For Anayochukwu, however, adventure or possibly the quest for an unusual “delectable” sexual experience, probably drove him to plough a lonely furrow with a donkey that he caroused, fondled and bedded as though it were a conventional thing to do.
His case of bestiality is the latest in the orgy of zoophilia, which according to animal rights activists, is on the increase in Nigeria, just as many zoophiles are reported to have, at one time or the other, been caught having sex with animals.
Semiu Lasisi, a 32-year-old commercial driver, for instance, was caught in the act of bestiality with a she-goat in Ibadan two years ago. Semiu, a popular zoophile in the city, was always attracted to goats and often lay ambush for them with gay abandon. He was said to be so notorious at it that goats in his Akobo Oju Irin community always took to their heels whenever they smelt his presence.
Also, in last August, 40-year-old Victor Nnanna Onyemaechi was arrested by the police in Abia State for having sex with his neighbour’s  goat. Same goes for Mohammed Kabir, a Kano-based Fulani cattle herdsman, whose penchant for sex with sheep was made known when his friend in whom he confided let the cat out of the bag following a disagreement between them. Kabir often randomly engaged in a marathon sex with his sheep each time he got aroused.
Similarly in Ebonyi State, 46-year-old Kelechi Nnali was arrested for having a carnal knowledge of a sheep. Though married with two wives, his sexual escapade took better part of him last September, when he “made love” to the animal on the road but was caught by a boy.
The list is endless with unimaginable results. Though it has not been linked, the stories of bizarre births are shocking enough with the birth of a half-human half-animal baby by a sheep in Sokoto in January 2012; birth of a horse by a woman in a Benin City-based church in September, 2012 and so many other unreported bizarre births, as well as the spread of zoonotic diseases (diseases transmitted from animals to humans, though with different means  of  transmission), among humans who must have contracted the diseases from animals by having sexual intercourse with them clearly suggests a disconnect with established social norms and values.
With the increase in cases of bestiality among Nigerians, it is unclear why the culprits abandon the natural man-woman sexual relationship for the unconventional means of satisfying their libidos.
It is also foggy as to what could be the sexual attraction of man to animal or the sense behind the call for legitimisation of bestiality in some countries, more so  when the Senate in the United States recently passed into law bill legalising sodomy and bestiality in the U.S. military, thus giving soldiers ample opportunity to practise it freely without facing prosecution.
A U.S. born zoophile was quoted in an online text as saying that there was nothing bad in zoophilia, hence the need to have it legitimised. Said he: “I believe that bestiality, as a sexual choice, should be given the same legal rights and social respect as the heterosexual and homosexual human-human relationships.  I am a practising zoophile who regularly engages in group sex with my fully-matured Rottweilers (both male and female) who willingly and often actively reciprocate the intimate eroticity. We all enjoy it immensely, so what’s wrong with it?”
Another zoophile in the U.S., Carlos Romero, who was arrested for having sex with his donkey, told an online news medium that he practised bestiality because he never felt comfortable around people, and that he was not,”a people person.”
Animals, according to him, “are usually there for you, and their feelings are 100 per cent honest, compared to humans who stab you in the back, give you diseases, lie to you and are promiscuous.”
To Tunde Aramide, a zoologist and animal rights activist, no reasonable person could justify bestiality. “Apart from being barbaric, unnatural, repugnant and unjustifiable, those who practise bestiality are abusers of animals who capitalise on the nature of these animals to take undue advantage of them. Bestiality, if you consider it critically, is synonymous with animal rape and other forms of sexual abuse against them. It is illegal and those who do it should be prosecuted.
“Though sexual behaviour of individual persons is always considered a private matter and confined to the realm of morality, no society approves of cross-species sexual intimacy. Those who abuse animals sexually or otherwise are guilty of God’s judgment, because God never wants them exploited. The animals are defenseless and voiceless, yet their basic rights to good living condition should, at least, be respected,” he added.
On why bestiality is on the increase in the country, those who speak with Sunday Tribune, said inability of many in Nigeria to see animals as creatures with defined rights had contributed to the rise.
Mrs Yewande Ogunleyin, a lawyer, said those who practised bestiality were “crude and insane persons who never see sexual molestation of animals as unlawful or unnatural. Their sense of judgement is impaired, so they can’t think properly.”
Citing section (214) subsection (2) of Criminal Code, she disclosed that animals too enjoyed the protection of the law as, “any person(s) who have carnal knowledge of an animal… is guilty of felony and liable for 14 years imprisonment.
According to Johnson Oyeleke, a clinical psychologist at the Department of Psychology, University of Ibadan, bestiality is an issue bordering on personality problem, saying those who engage in it behave like animals because their perception of normal things has been impaired.
“It is purely a personality problem. Those who claimed it is their nature to engage in bestiality need clinical assessment to ascertain whether they have personality problem or not. What is the underlining factor that makes you attracted to animals in the first place?
“It shows that they  have some problems inside of them. When they come, there are some tools clinical psychologists will apply on them that will bring out those underlining factors that make them attracted to animals.”
Most clerics, who spoke with Sunday Tribune, said incidents of man sleeping with animals had spiritual implication. Some of the zoophiles, according to Pastor Ayo Adejugbe of Living Faith Church, Ibadan, “sleep with animals as a spiritual prerequisite of money-making rituals. This may sound unreasonable to those in the West, but no African, I’m sure, will dispute this.”
An Islamic leader, Alhaji Ganiyu Olujimi, said, “Islam forbids bestiality. Allah forbids any intercourse between man and animal. Those who do it are not Muslims, they practise it for spiritual reasons, probably to acquire power or money. It is not ordinary.”
High Chief Yemi Elebuibon, described bestiality as inhuman and barbaric, adding that it had no basis in African traditional religion.
“You can’t rule that out in the society, because there are goats and dogs among humans too. There is no corpus of Ifa that is in support of people sleeping with animals in order to get rich.”
A demographer with the National Population Census (NPC), Ms Beatrice Daniel, said the age bracket of zoophiles in the country ranged between 25 and 50, noting that this is suggestive of certain lopsidedness in the society and mental confusion of youths in the country.
“What is happening suggests that those who do bestiality are in for it for a purpose. It may be argued that they are insane or have other forms of psychological problems. The fact, however, remains that this society rebuffs discipline and rewards corruption or immorality and permissiveness.
“Acquiring power or money with little stress holds a great appeal to these youths. If sleeping with a goat will bring money or power to somebody wallowing in poverty, he will definitely agree to sleep with as many goats as possible. It is not ordinary, and I believe people do it for a purpose other than seeking for mere sexual gratification.”
Though many are of the opinion that zoophiles need medical treatment and psychotherapy, many also believe that more of them need to be put on trial for a deterrent effect, because allowing zoophilia and zoophiles to go unpunished in any sane society weakens the moral foundation of such a society.
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They can contract zoonotic diseases —Prof Oyeyemi 

Professor Mathew Oyeyemi is of the department of Veterinary Medicine, University of Ibadan.
BESTIALITY seems to be on the increase among Nigerians these days, what do you see to this?
With what we have heard and seen here, there are two categories of people that practise bestiality, those who do it for ritual purposes and those who are involved in it for pure immoral reasons.
What do you think should be the roles of animal rights activists in preventing sexual abuse of animals?
It is something that is just coming up; it is true that animals have rights. For example, you don’t maltreat them, you don’t mate animals of different species, it is unlawful and unnatural. It is only animals of same species that should be mated. If somebody violates animal rights, it has punishment under the law. Those in charge should ensure that whoever that abuses animals sexually should be punished or made to face the wrath of the law. They should be apprehended and punished.
Are you saying there is a particular legislation that protects the rights of animals in the country?
There are animal rights, but I may not be specific about this, because it is just a new thing that started to happen in our society. The first case that happened was reported about three years ago.
Could you brief us about the specific rights of animals, what rights do they enjoy under the law?
Under the law animals are supposed to be fed; they have rights to good housing; you don’t perform euthanasia on animals or test dangerous drugs on them. You don’t kill them anyhow.
Does bestiality have any health risks, especially on the part of humans who engage in it? 
Yes. There  are  venereal diseases among animals which could be passed onto human beings through sexual intercourse. There was the case of a man caught around 1.00 a.m. having sex with a cow, I wouldn’t mention the place because it is still under investigation. We were  contacted to give professional advice on the issue. The guy was admitted to hospital with his manhood swollen and bruised. He  was diagnosed with a venereal disease which he  contracted from the cow.  The  man confessed to having slept with the animal. So, when there is an intercourse between an animal and man, the man is at risk of contracting venereal and other  dangerous  diseases, like campylobacteriosis, toxoplasimosis.
Do animals feel sexually attracted to human beings? 
Unlike human beings, animals have time of sexual arousal called heat. During their heat period, they are aroused sexually and any animal that climbs on them at that moment can have sex with them, but we don’t encourage that because animals of different species are not allowed to mate.
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Zoophiles didn’t go through proper socialisation —Dr Olley
Dr Benjamin Olley is a clinical psychologist in the Department of Psychology, University of Ibadan.
COULD you tell us what bestiality means?
First and foremost, bestiality is a sexual deviation; it is one of the classifications of improper or unconventional sexual behaviour. Essentially, sexual deviation occurs when there is an unconventional sexual gratification. The conventional way  for sexual gratification is when there is sex between man and woman, in other words, when the female and male genders meet. However, there are people who receive sexual gratification through unconventional means. That is why they are called sexual deviants, and there are several of them; masochism, sadism, paedophile, voyeurism.
Bestiality, in essence, means receiving sexual satisfaction by sleeping deliberately with animals. It could be any animal, dogs, apes, chimpanzees etc. As a matter of fact, there is  a theory that states that the  source  of HIV/AIDS is traceable to  a sexual intercourse between a man and chimpanzee. The disease  got transmitted from the animal and it started spreading according to the theory.
In Nigeria, we have had one or two cases of humans sleeping with animals; it may not be for sexual satisfaction per se, it could be for commercial reason, like making prostitutes to sleep with dogs. But bestiality essentially happens when humans sleep with animals deliberately with the aim of having sexual excitement. It is a sexual disorder and a psychiatric condition any human being can suffer from.
What psychological factors could make one engage in the sexual practice?
Several reasons could make one engage in bestiality. It could be because one is suffering certain unresolved conflicts from childhood, it could also be  as  a  result of  lack of sexual outlets (I mean when  you  are  confined to an environment where interaction with your fellow human beings is difficult and the the only source  of  sexual attraction is an animal close by). It could be a trait of anti-social personality disorder, or a symptom of mental retardation, mentally-retarded people could lose their sense of judgment and as a result sleep with an animal. It could also be a personality problem occasioned by one’s inability to speak or interact normally with fellow human beings. In this part of the world, one cannot rule out the possibility of supernatural forces. In other words, one could be under a strong spell to engage in bestiality. Nevertheless, the sufferers should be  made to receive adequate treatment, in form of psychotherapy or proper medical treatment.
You made mention of unresolved conflicts as a contributory factor to why many engage in bestiality, would say there are certain social forces that create or trigger  these conflicts within an individual?
According to Sigmund Freud in Psychoanalysis, a school of thought in Psychology, there are some infantile unresolved conflicts that we are not aware of, but they determine some of our behaviours. They are not spoken of, yet they are embedded right in our subconscious level and later find a way of escaping through our errors and mistakes. There are some past experiences we project into the present behaviour, and we are  not conscious of them. We need to resolve those conflicts or what Freud called “sexual pleasures or instincts” before we can do things in a worthy manner. The sexual instinct in man will want him to satisfy his urge immediately without thinking about the consequences, but we need to teach people to  delay  their  urges. It is not everything you want you can have access to. This is one of the reasons people can’t prevent corruption. You want something you can’t afford immediately, but can’t wait till you can afford it and, as such, you do so many anti-social things just to satisfy that need. Some people are like that, because they didn’t go through proper socialisation, their consciences are not well-developed. These are the people who have unresolved conflicts in them which ought to have been resolved in time past. If you don’t resolve certain things at your tender age, you will carry  them over and begin to manifest them in your adult behaviour.
Is it right to call bestiality a sexual orientation, just like LGBT  since most people who practise it believe that their bodies are naturally conditioned to making love to animals?
Homosexuality or lesbianism is not a sexual deviation. Even though it is unconventional to some people, it is not a psychiatric condition. Depending on the school of thought you operate, homosexuality is an opinion or sexual feeling you have for someone like you. It is an orientation; it is different from bestiality. Bestiality is an unconventional means of sexual gratification.



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