Zimbabwe has continued to record an alarmingly high increase in cases of gender based violence.
Musasa Project director, Precious Taru told ZTN, the trend is worrying as cases continue to double.
“Just in January alone we recorded 1 425 cases and out of those, 269 were sexual violence. Sadly, cases keep rising as in February, 2 107 gender based violence cases were recorded, 332 of them were sexual violence.
“We are really worried about this trend and this is something that all stakeholders need to join hands and address urgently. Violence against women is alarmingly on the rise and this affects all aspects of the development of a nation,” she said.
This comes in the wake of a report by the World Health Organisation that violence against women remains devastatingly pervasive.
Across their lifetime, 1 in 3 women, around 736 million, are subjected to physical or sexual violence by an intimate partner or sexual violence from a non-partner – a number that has remained largely unchanged over the past decade.
“Violence against women is endemic in every country and culture, causing harm to millions of women and their families, and has been exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic,” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General.
“But unlike Covid-19, violence against women cannot be stopped with a vaccine. We can only fight it with deep-rooted and sustained efforts – by governments, communities and individuals – to change harmful attitudes, improve access to opportunities and services for women and girls, and foster healthy and mutually respectful relationships.”
The WHO and Musasa concur that Covid-19 restrictions increased gender based violence cases as victims and perpetrators were confined together.