Minister of Women Affairs, Community, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Sithembiso Nyoni has urged the public to take part in this year’s 16 days of activism against gender based violence to end the ‘cancer’ that continues to destroy the girl child.
Speaking at the launch of the 16 days of activism against GBV, Nyoni said the 16 days of activism against gender based violence should not be limited to 16 days but every day.
“As we commemorate this years 16 days of activism we do so in loving memory of many who have died due to GBV and related abuse issues, we have heard several depressing stories of young girls dying whilst giving birth, men committing suicide, both men and women murdering their intimate partners and murdering the children all these are lives lost emanating from GBV and sexual abuse matters,” she said.
Nyoni said they are spreading the message that no one should lose life because of GBV.
“Disputes can be resolved amicably, let us encourage each other to explore other means of solving disputes, violence shall not solve violence,” she said.
Commenting on the recent reported cases of rape of the 9 year old girl from Tsholotsho and an 8 year old from Bindura, Nyoni said “these are just some of the dreadful cases of human rights abuses I call up all Zimbabweans to rise and stop this cancer that’s destroying the girl child.”
She challenged all stakeholders, partners and communities to report and flush out all perpetrators of gender based violence.
According to official statistics, over 20 000 pupils from primary and secondary schools in Zimbabwe fell pregnant between September 2021 and August 2022.
While most of the cases involving rape on minors have pure criminal intentions, some of the acts are reportedly inspired by superstitious beliefs linking the rape of minors to lucky charms or the exorcising of bad spirits on the advice of some unscrupulous traditional healers.
This year’s 16 days of activism against gender based violence running under the theme “All Lives Matter-End Gender Based Violence now