Stakeholders bemoan rising cases of GBV in Blantyre

380 cases of sexual gender based violence have been registered in Blantyre District between the months of January and March 2021.

This has been disclosed on Wednesday during a panel discussion organised by the National Women’s Lobby Group held at Blantyre Civic Centre offices.

The meeting attracted different stakeholders including religious and traditional leaders, police, officials from Blantyre City Council (BCC) and other organisations involved in the fight against GBV.

The meeting was organise to discuss the roles of the community leaders in the fight against sexual gender based violence and harmful cultural practices.

Projects Coordinator for Women’s Lobby Group, Atupele Wirima, said the figures are alarming hence they found it important to bring together the stakeholders as one way of mapping way forward towards ending GBV.

Wirima said: “The figures are very alarming and as an organisation we want girls and women to start feel safe in this country because if they are being victimised then they will be mentally demoralized, fail to associate freely in the community hence failing to participate in development activities.”

And in his comment, BCC Deputy Director of Health and Social Services, Samudeni Seunda, expressed gratitude with a panel discussion saying as a council they will empower all their Gender Based Violence subcommittees that were already established in all the 23 Wards.

He further said the main challenge is that issues of sexual gender based violence are not discussed openly.

Gender Development Officer for Blantyre District Council, Agnes Napwanga said covid-19 pandemic has also contributed to the rise in cases.

During the meeting it was also revealed that out of 380 cases that were reported, young girls aged between 10 and 15 years were the ones mostly victimized.

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