Raila urges candid discussion on GBV amid rising cases

Raila urges candid discussion on GBV amid rising cases
Kenyan women shout slogans and holding banners during a march to mark International Women's Day in Nairobi, Kenya Friday, March 8, 2019. Hundred of women held street protest and marched in downtown Nairobi highlighting domestic violence, sexual attacks and discrimination in jobs and wages against them. Violent crime against women has been on the rise in kenya .Photo: Reuters

Raila Odinga, the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party leader, has called for an urgent candid discussion on Gender Based Violence, asserting that the scourge is out of control and must be eradicated.

In a social media post on Tuesday morning, the former Prime Minister weighed in, urging partners to leave if they are unable to reconcile.

“This scourge must come to an end. The abnormality of these murders cannot become the normal No! If you cannot reconcile, then, leave and let live. We need an urgent candid discussion on Gender Based Violence as a Nation,” Raila said on Tuesday.

He went on: “It is unfortunate that after winning their partner’s heart, instead of going on to cherish and love them, some suddenly turn physical, and at times horrifically end up killing them. Too many lives are being lost on an almost daily basis going by media reports,”

His remarks come against the backdrop of several cold-blooded murders in the country, which have been fueled by, among other things, love gone sour.

Since the outbreak of the pandemic, incidents of gender-based violence have increased, with analysts pointing to job-loss-related stress and confinement at home as some of the main causes.

According to a study released in December 2020 by the National Crime Research Center, gender-based violence rose by 92 percent between January and June 2020 compared to January and December 2019, with murder, sexual offenses, defilement, grievous damage, physical assault, child neglect, and child marriages accounting for the majority of cases.

Women and girls have been reporting more violations to the Center for Rights Education and Awareness (CREAW)- a national feminist women’s right NGO- since the pandemic began.

According to the NGO, CREAW typically received 20 cases each month, but with the Covid-19 pandemic, the number of cases increased to 34.

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