The essential elements of the rape crime are sexual penetration, force, and the lack of consent. The prevalence of rape worldwide has been reported to be a staggering 20%. In Nigeria, most victims of rape will elect to remain silent about the experience, because of stigmatization leading to under reporting of the crime. This study was aimed at elucidating the perception of rape and determining its prevalence and predictors among female undergraduates in a tertiary institution in South Eastern Nigeria. This was a descriptive cross sectional study in which self administered questionnaires were used to collect relevant data from 280 female undergraduates of UNIZIK Okofia Nnewi Campus, Nigeria, selected by cluster sampling technique. Data were analyzed using Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 19. Bivariate and multivariate analyses were used to determine associations and identify independent predictors of rape respectively. The level of significance was set at p < 0.05. Result showed that the female students had a good knowledge and the perception of rape and that some had fallen victims (16.4%). Acquaintance rape was markedly common (p < 0.02). The single (p < 0.032), and off campus (p < 0.031) female students, often the party going (p < 0.02) types who enjoyed night (p < 0.029) activities were significantly more likely to become victims of rape than those married, on campus and non-party-going counterparts. Also, students who attended single gender schools (p < 0.03) were more predisposed to rape than those counterparts who attended co-educational colleges. Awareness campaigns through peer education, introduction of sexuality education in the school curriculum and establishment of school health programmes are highly recommended.
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