Chipata district has recorded a total of 336 gender based violence (GBV) cases from January 2019 to date compared to 395 cases recorded during the same period in 2018.
The first quarter of 2019 recorded 34 cases making it 36 cases less the number during the same period last year while the second quarter recorded 80 more cases compared to the same period of 2018 where 51 cases were recorded.
Chipata District Commissioner (DC) Kalunga Zulu disclosed this in a speech read on his behalf by the District Administrative Officer (DAO) Kapembwa Sikazwe at the launch of the 16 days of activism against GBV recently.
Mr. Zulu said most of the recorded GBV cases were committed by men against women and girls.
He said the GBV situation in the district was worrying as most victims suffer various forms of health complications thereby negatively affecting their quality of life, productivity and the overall individual development.
He noted with sadness that about 47 percent of women aged 15 to 49 justify a husband’s action to beat his wife.
He said there was need to reverse such attitudes.
“It will take concerted efforts to reverse such attitudes. It is the responsibility of parents and guardians to ensure children are raised to respect each other and share responsibility,” he said.
Mr. Zulu said development cannot be effective and complete where women and girls are deprived of their rights in the name of protecting some retrogressive cultural values.
“We are obligated to stand up and raise our voices against the scourge of violence against women and girls,” he said.
The DC has meanwhile cautioned institutions of learning against taking advantage of learners saying administrators have the responsibility of creating a conducive environment for students and protect them from perpetrators of GBV.
“I take this opportunity to warn teachers, lecturers, employers and senior staff at work places who commit sexual harassment with impunity that sooner or later they will be caught,” he said.
The Zambia GBV index stands at 0.517 percent, rooted in both individual and institutional values and practices.
This year’s 16 days of activism against GBV commemoration is under the theme “Raising an equality conscious generation to eliminate gender based violence”.