Gweru-Women in the Midlands province have expressed concern over the surges in Gender-Based Violence (GBV) saying uncontrolled disputes and cases of abuse in homes were the leading cause of violence.
The concern comes at a time when a bizarre incident of a Mvuma woman, Regina Khumbula was murdered in cold blood by her husband for alleged money rituals.
Speaking during a virtual hashtag justice for Regina, Women Coalition of Zimbabwe (WCoZ) Midlands (GBV) cluster Chairperson, Agnes Muuya said it was disheartening to note how gender-based violence was on the rise.
“I am pained to note that cases of GBV are on the rise in our province particularly looking on how these cases are now leading to deaths as seen in the case of Regina who was killed for ritual purposes.
“I would like to say may her soul rest in external peace as we demand justice to prevail. Of late women have suffered all sorts of abuse in their homes which include economic abuse that is having your hard-earned cash taken, being refused your right to work, and being denied a chance to fend for your family.
“Another form of abuse is sexual violence where women are being forced to indulge in sex without their consent, unwanted touching, exposure to pornographic material, having sexual intercourse with a young person, marital rape, sexual harassment among others,” added Muuya
Mvuma Residents Association (MRA) Director, Sitshengisiwe Kalenge said it was crucial for women to speak with one voice for Regina as justice is supposed to serve.
“As women, we are against this form of brutality and we want a strong message to be sent to the world against (GBV), we believe in sisterhood and advocating for one another just like Regina’s case as she was murdered in cold blood,” she said
Mufaro Jonasi a lawyer said it was important for women to be capacitated to know their rights and reliefs which could protect them against gender-based violence.
“It is important to know that Gender-Based Violence is based on social and domestic setup and these include people who are in relationship and marriages. In order to curb GBV, the parliament enacted the Domestic Violence Act Chapter 5:16 which provides relief to victims either men or women who fall prey to violence and abuse.
“So there is a very wide definition out to spell gender-based violence as it covers economic and social aspects because some cultural practices and doings like child marriages also violet the rights of women and young girls.
“Another protection relief we have is the protection order, this can be obtained from the courts of law with 48hours and here the clerk of court or lawyers can help the victims to understand what the relief will be carrying,” added Jonasi. #Women In News