This just in from the Lagos Vanguard: Amid great excitement, 23-year-old Titilayo Amudat Odekeye was recently crowned Miss Virginity 2009. The 43 contestants were checked out and confirmed to be virgins by Dr. Ekemode, a Lagos-based gynecologist. Which is important, since last year only 43 girls out of 60 entrants got the approval on their seals.
In its second year, the Miss Virginity Pageant is intended to inspire young women to hang onto their virginity until they marry. Says Princess Adunni Adediran, founder of the organization sponsoring the contest:
When I looked at the way young girls were being molested and dumped through having sexual intercourse, I said to myself this must stop. This is because it is after de-flowering them that they will be abandoned. It is after the man might have slept with a girl that he will see her bad legs or that her nose is too long. At times, these girls would have gone through series of abortions.
The Princess sang the praises of the virgin girls:
Children born by such women will know that their mothers were not promiscuous before getting married. Even the in-laws will respect such a lady and the community where they live will praise her.
OK. It's really important to encourage women to be careful about their sex lives, especially in AIDS-infested Africa. And remaining a virgin is a fine choice many young women make. But don't you just love how it's entirely the girl's responsibility not to get molested or exploited? Just once I'd like to see the guys being told "Hey it's not cool to fuck and run, especially if her nose is too long," instead of shaming women into avoiding all sexual contact lest they get raped and bring dishonor on the community.
In Lagos, as it is on college campuses all over America, it's always the girls' problem. Dr. Yemisi Pitan, a clinical psychologist, gave the pageant girls tips on how to stay safe:
Don’t walk in a dark place; don’t visit a boy alone; don’t take any drink after you have left it for a while because you could be drugged.