Deliver us from GBV evil

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GENDER equality advocacy group Musasa Project and Oxfam last week issued a statement with startling revelations that since the national Covid-19 lockdown in March, they had assisted over 10 000 survivors of gender-based violence (GBV).

The reason for the jump in GBV, according to the two organisations, is that women are stuck indoors with their abusers for long periods of time.

“Violence against women is taking many forms within societies which are physical, sexual, economic and psychological.

“One of the negative effects of Covid-19 has been an upsurge in cases of GBV. Since the onset of the pandemic, all the Musasa shelter centres across the country have noted an upsurge in reported cases of GBV.

“Evidence of this worrying trend is shown in the statistics covering the period between April 1 and July 11, 2020, where Musasa has assisted a total of 10 849 survivors across its various platforms.”

This has a serious indictment on the kind of society we are.

The growing levels of GBV and general abuse of women and children are disgusting to say the least and what is worrying is that despite widespread condemnation, little has happened in the way of sending a clear message to perpetrators.

The safety of 52 percent of the country’s population is under threat and this calls for action to realign our laws so that they conform to the requirements of the environment we are living in.

The police Victim Friendly Unit needs capacity while the penalties meted on convicted paedophiles, rapists and wife bashers need to be reviewed.

There is a need for harsher sentences for perpetrators of GBV.
Authorities need to ensure the Prosecutor General’s Office has a full-fledged department solely responsible for GBV cases.

This will then work closely with the police Victim Friendly Unit as well as specialised courts to deal with GBV cases.

Our children and women need protection and the State has an obligation to expend all resources available to make sure this is realised.

Unfortunately the most trusted people in our midst have turned into the greatest monsters of our generation.
Our people need a saviour and the government must wake up now and deliver us from the GBV evil!

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