Silence: Gender-Based Violence (GBV’s) ‘best friend’

Silence has been identified as a major contributing factor to the prevalence of cases of Gender-Based Violence (GBV) in Zimbabwean communities.

This was brought to light during a live radio discussion conducted by Women’s Institute for Leadership Development (WILD) at Skyz Metro FM, this morning.

The 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence (GBV) campaign began on the 25th of November 2018 and ends on the 10th of December 2018. The campaign aims to encourage society to talk about GBV, particularly victims who are the most affected. It envisages to inspire a reduction in reported cases of Gender-Based Violence (GBV) which has spiraled over the years, as Africa was identified as a continent with unsafe places of residence.

“Gender- Based Violence (GBV) affects both men and women, boys and girls,” stated Angeline Mnangwa, a Programmes Officer at Musasa Project. “Cases of violence against girls and women are actually higher as compared to that of men and boys. Members of the community are encouraged to desist from maintaining silence, especially if they are living in homes where they are faced with GBV.”

Over the years, there has been confusion over the meaning of Gender-Based Violence (GBV). Gender-Based Violence (GBV) knows no boundaries such as age or a social status of a person, but is capable of affecting anyone.

“Children and other vulnerable groups find it easier to be silent about Gender-Based Violence (GBV) as the perpetrator is the one with the economic power in the home,” said Mnangwa. “When a child is abused, they are at a disadvantage and maintaining silence is the best alternative for them.”

Mnangwa called upon survivors of GBV to seek help and not to suffer in silence as it can lead to extremes such as death. In a recent report, a Gweru lawyer, Lucy Duve was murdered by her boyfriend due to a prolonged case of abuse.

Source: Women’s Institute for Leadership Development (WILD)