By Ireen Kayira, MANA
Minister of Gender, Children, Disability and Social Welfare, Mary Navicha has called for a strengthened advocacy against Gender Based Violence (GBV) as the country is commemorating 16 days of activism against GBV.
This was said during a press briefing in Lilongwe during the official launch of 16 days of activism against GBV which is commemorated in the month of November.
Navicha said there is need for Malawians to understand the negative effects of GBV, especially rape and other forms of sexual assault on women.
She said there are a lot of cases of rape in the country that are being reported and there is need for concerted efforts to end this type of violence against women.
“Rape has serious impact on the victims which, when not handled well, the trauma can remain in the victims life for the rest of her life,” she said.
She, therefore, said there is need for stakeholders to reflect on this and how it affects women so that the problem can be eradicated.
However, the Minister said she is not satisfied with the way cases are being handled but said there is hope as government has put in place laws and policies to make sure that the law fully protects women against rape.
NGO Gender Coordination Network (NGOGCN) chairperson, Barbara Banda said currently a week does not pass without reports on rape and defilement of women and children in the country.
“This is very worrisome development for NGOGCN and stakeholders, who are tirelessly working towards elimination of violence against women and girls,” she said.
She said as the country is commemorating the 16 days of activism, citizens have to reflect on what they are doing to end GBV.