- BRIGHTHOUSE COLLAPSE came minutes before Italian restaurant chain Carluccio's also fell into administration.
- BrightHouse - the biggest rent-to-own operator in the UK - has collapsed, after an influx of compensation claims for selling to people, many on low incomes and difficulty to access credit from mainstream lenders unable to repay and its shops were then shut owing to coronavirus restrictions on retailers.
- Zimbabweans fled towns yesterday to their rural homes for food security over the 21-day Corona lockdown which came into effect last night
- DYNAMOS captain Partson Jaure has a delicate operation to repair a skull fracture he sustained in a car crash last week.
- WHO Africa, says, of the 47 countries in the WHO Africa region 39 nations are now affected by Covid-19
Officials in the Pakistani state of Punjab have called for a federal inquiry into what it called the largest-ever child abuse scandal in the South Asian country’s history involving nearly 300 children.
The government of Punjab state on Sunday ordered a judicial investigation into the scandal that came to light last week after discovery of about 400 video recordings of more than 280 children being forced to have sex.
“Those involved in the case will be severely punished. They will not be able to escape their fate. The affected families will be provided with justice at any cost,” Chief Minister of Punjab Shahbaz Sharif was quoted as saying by Dawn newspaper website.
So far seven people have been reportedly arrested by the police over the case that has shocked the nation of 180 million.
Most of the victims were under 14, including a six-year-old boy, Rai Babar Saeed, district police chief of Kasur, where the incident happened, told reporters, adding that a 10-year-old schoolgirl filmed being molested by a 14-year-old boy.
Videos of these assaults were filmed and thousands of copies are believed to have been sold in Hussain Khanwala village in Kasur district, the police said.
One of the victims said he was injected in the spine with a drug before he was assaulted, they added.
Government in denial
The scale of the scandal emerged earlier this week after the victims’ parents clashed with the police during a protest against their failure to prosecute the men who orchestrated the scandal.
Pakistan has seen a similar tragedy in the late 1990s, when 100 children were sexually abused and murdered in Lahore by Javed Iqbal Mughal, a serial killer.
Al Jazeera’s Nicole Johnston, reporting from Islamabad, said that a gang of 25 men has been involved in the crime, coordinating it.
“Some of the victims’ families started to speak up. This is creating a lot of controversy in Pakistan,” she said.
In an interview with Al Jazeera, Tahira Abdullah, a human rights activist in Islamabad, said that the government is “in denial” about the abuses.
“I think Pakistan is failing its children,” she said adding that the stigma about the cases, and the hopeless in the court system, have prevented the arrest and persecution of abusers. Source: Al Jazeera