Anti Domestic Violence Council (ADVC) has called on women to report all cases of domestic violence and responsible authorities to handle the cases with the seriousness they deserve to ensure justice.
Addressing the media in Harare yesterday, ADVC chairperson Eunice Njovana said it is possible to prevent domestic violence from ever taking anyone and can prevent another child from having to experience the abuse, death of a parent and orphan hood.
“Ending domestic violence will require a coordinated and concerted community response in which we all play a part. It is tragic when cold blooded murders occur, but we must also know that we can prevent domestic violence from ever taking another one of our sisters, brothers, family members, neighbours, co-workers again.
“ADVC is therefore calling upon communities to report cases or suspected cases of domestic violence, victims of domestic violence to report such cases and never to remain in violent relationships, stiff penalties to be imposed on perpetrators of domestic violence.
“Communities to develop a culture of zero tolerance to domestic violence regardless of its scope and service providers to promptly provide quality services to victims of sexual violence and ensure timely access to justice,” said Njovana.
According to the council, reported cases of domestic violence perpetrated on women have decreased.
In 2016 men reported 1993 cases while women reported 17 673. In 2017 men reported 2 461 and women 16 067 and in 2018 till September 2 183 cases were reported by men and 10 064 by women.
However, Musasa Project programs manager Precious Tari said they have recorded an increase in the number of reported domestic violence cases within their organization.
“We are getting more numbers in terms of women and girls who are coming to report and comparing 2013 and 2018, in 2013 we received close to 13 000 but as of 2018 the figure doubled to 26 000 cases. It’s a sign that the work partners are in the field is giving results on raising awareness on the rights of women and girls.
“But at the same time we need to acknowledge the services at the moment are not adequate to cater for every woman and girl and all these services are some of the issues that we are also fighting for to ensure that women and girls have access to readily available services in the event they have undergone domestic violence,” explained Tari.
The Anti Domestic Violence Council could not comment on the recent media reports that Vice President Kembo Mohadi allegedly attacked his ex-wife stating that they have not received an official report or statement.