Muungano Gender Forum in collaboration with the International Solidarity Foundation (ISF) has launched 16-day gender activism in Kisii County that will run until 10th December this year in a bid to address the rising cases of Gender-Based Violence (GBV) in the County.
Addressing the press in Kisii town, Counseling Psychologist, Ruth Mogaka, said this year’s theme is; Orient the world, end violence against women and girls now, stating that one in every three women has undergone violence especially from a close relative, a partner, or a friend globally.
She said that a study done in 2018 showed that GBV was at a prevalence of 18 percent nationally and Kisii County was at 23 percent which was very high from the national figure saying there is a need to stand up and identify the causes and how to minimize them.
“Out of the cases we have received in Kisii County, defilement is leading with 70 percent, followed by incest with 40 percent, rape, and sodomy which we have experienced of late at 16 percent,” added Mogaka.
She noted that poverty levels, increase in drug abuse and alcoholism are the major causes of GBV cases adding that technology is also contributing and parents should be watchful of what their children are doing online and the company they are keeping.
Mogaka lauded the collaboration they have with the police rating it at 80 percent in the fight against GBV in the society.
She urged parents to ensure they are close to their children and know where they are at any given time when schools close for the festive season, to ensure the children do not fall victim.
On his part, Advocate George Morara, said that they vowed to stand and end GBV directed at women adding that most of the reported cases are of women and numbers are alarming while those of men are minimal.
“The provisions of the Constitution of Kenya 2010 article 29 (c), gives a provision that every citizen is not supposed to be subjected to any form of violence either from the private or public quarters and should have security,” affirmed Morara.
The Advocate pointed out that subjecting the matter to the legal system is a major challenge adding that other laws have been enacted to take care of any form of violence and the penal code has provisions for particular offenses that are committed with penalties.
Morara asked people in leadership and all sectors to enlighten citizens about the society moving from patriarchy whereby it is believed that a man is all-powerful and empower women in a bid to manage the rising GBV cases in society.
ISF is a Finnish Non-Governmental Organization that has worked in Kenya since 2015 on Gender-Based Violence through local implementing partners.
By Augustine Mosioma