Community Development Officers operating in Bukonzo County East of Kasese district are decrying the high rate of Gender Based Violence in their local lower governments.
The Gender based violence includes sexual, physical, mental and economic harm inflicted on an individual on the basis of their gender. It also includes threats of violence, coercion and manipulation. This can take many forms such as intimate partner violence, sexual violence, child marriage, female genital mutilation.
Now, while presenting their reports yesterday during a Joint conference held at Kisinga Sub-county Headquarters, the CDOs from Kyondo and Kisinga sub-counties as well as Kisinga Town Council all reported high rate of increased Gender Based Violence in their areas of operations.
Mr. Venesio Tsembere, the CDO for Kisinga Sub-county told the meeting that between July and September 2023, his office had registered 24 cases of domestic violence, 03 suicidal cases, 05 defilement cases, 03 cases of missing children, and 10 cases of violence against women among other criminal cases.
Tsembere also reported that the sub-county is grappling with high cases of land wrangles that are partly to blame for the suicidal cases.
Winfred Nyalhukeri, a Community Development Officer for Kyondo sub-county reported that her sub-county said that the cases have resulted into the early marriages, teenage pregnancies and defilement.
Nyalhukeri attributed the causes to the parents’ failure to embrace taking their children to schools, something she says increases levels of ignorance and illiteracy among the people.
Jennifer Kasambangene, the Senior Community Development Officer at Kisinga Town Council concurred with her counterparts adding that GBV is also at the apex in the urban centre.
She regretted that the vice has hampered a lot of economic developments in the area including the Girl and Boy Child Education.
According to Kasambangene, there is need to involve all stakeholders including the judiciary, police, and political leaders, religious, opinion and cultural leaders among others to collectively devise means to curb the vice.
It should be noted that in October last year (2022), Hon. Justice Emmy Vincent Mugabo, the Resident Judge of the High Court of Uganda based in Fort Portal said about 70% of the crimes reported in Rwenzori region are Sexual and Gender Based Violence –related.
Recently released statistics also ranked Kasese district in the 3rd position countrywide in cases of GBV with the youngest Ugandan grandmother at the age of 24. ENDS