Checheche com­mem­o­rates 16 Days of Ac­tivism Against GBV

The Manica Post - - Local News - Wim­bainashe Zhakata Post Cor­re­spon­dent

THE Checheche com­mu­nity in Chipinge joined the rest of the world on Satur­day to com­mem­o­rate the 16 Days of Ac­tivism Against Gen­der Based Vi­o­lence (GBV) cam­paign, which is meant to raise aware­ness on GBV and its ef­fects on women.

In a speech read on her be­half by the act­ing di­rec­tor in her of­fice. Mrs Chris­tine Chideme, the Per­ma­nent Sec­re­tary of the Min­istry of Women Af­fairs, Com­mu­nity, Small and Medium En­ter­prises De­vel­op­ment, Dr Rudo Chit­siga said Chipinge is among the dis­tricts in Zim­babwe with high sex­ual vi­o­lence cases.

“Four­teen cases of rape were recorded in the first quar­ter of 2018 at Chipinge District Hos­pi­tal alone and 15 cases were han­dled by the Na­tional pros­e­cu­tion au­thor­ity” she said.

In or­der to curb this she said cur­rently the Min­istry is work­ing with DREAMS part­ners in the district of Chipinge with the aim of pro­vid­ing qual­ity and com­pre­hen­sive ser­vices to sur­vivors of Gen­der Based Vi­o­lence.

She also said that with ef­forts to curb GBV, a one-stop cen­tre was es­tab­lished at Chipinge District Hos­pi­tal where the sur­vivors of GBV will re­ceive free ser­vices, sup­port and safety at that place.

“A one-stop cen­tre has been es­tab­lished at Chipinge District Hos­pi­tal. Sur­vivors of GBV will re­ceive ser­vices in­clud­ing med­i­cal ex­am­i­na­tion, psy­choso­cial sup­port, le­gal and vic­tim friendly ser­vices from the po­lice un­der one roof. All ser­vices are be­ing of­fered for free,” she said.

Mrs Chideme said ever since the cen­tre was es­tab­lished, more than 100 cases had been re­solved of which 15 cases were re­lated with sex­ual abuse.

“From in­cep­tion of the cen­tre on 15 May to Septem­ber of this year, 105 clients have re­ceived ser­vices from the cen­tre. Of the 105 cases, 15 were sex­ual abuse cases.

“In ad­di­tion, other im­ple­ment­ing part­ners such as PSI are also of­fer­ing med­i­cal ser­vices to sur­vivors of sex­ual vi­o­lence in­clud­ing HIV test­ing, and coun­selling, and post ex­po­sure pro­phy­laxis,” said Mrs Chideme.

She ex­pressed con­cern of the high num­ber of women who were ex­pe­ri­enc­ing phys­i­cal or sex­ual vi­o­lence from their spouses among other dis­turb­ing cases in line with GBV.

“Thirty-five per­cent of ever-mar­ried women aged 15-49 ex­pe­ri­enced phys­i­cal or sex­ual vi­o­lence from a spouse, and of these women, thirty-seven per­cent re­ported ex­pe­ri­enc­ing phys­i­cal in­juries.“

The event started with a peace march around the Checheche com­mu­nity ac­com­pa­nied with edu­tain­ment, sport among oth­ers as a way of con­sci­en­tis­ing the Checheche com­mu­nity against GBV.

The 16 Days of Ac­tivism is com­mem­o­rated an­nu­ally from Novem­ber25 to the 10th of De­cem­ber.

Speak­ing to The Man­ica Post , district de­vel­op­ment of­fi­cer for the min­istry Mr Gabriel Jaji said the pur­pose for the cel­e­bra­tion is to am­plify and spread the mes­sage of say­ing no to GBV within those 16 days.

“This year, we are part of a move­ment that is say­ing #Be­cause I’m A Man/#Be­cause I’m a Woman. Let us de­clare,” he said.

Mrs Chideme in­di­cated de­press­ing statis­tics of GBV in Zim­babwe. She said: “Thirty-five per­cent of women age 15-49 have ex­pe­ri­enced phys­i­cal vi­o­lence since age 15, Four­teen per­cent of women age 15-49 have ex­pe­ri­enced sex­ual vi­o­lence at least once in their life­time.

“While thirty-two per­cent of ever-mar­ried women have ex­pe­ri­enced spousal emo­tional vi­o­lence six per­cent of women who have ever been preg­nant ex­pe­ri­enced vi­o­lence dur­ing one or more of their preg­nan­cies,” she said.

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