“There is a rise of cases of gender based domestic violence (GBV),in Kilifi County compared to other areas in the country that must be brought to a stop urgently as is humanly possible,” Chief Administrative Secretary in the Ministry of Public Service, Youth and Gender Affairs Rachel Shebesh said.
Calling on the local administration and the County Government to mobilize the community to find a lasting home grown solution to the violence, Hon. Shebesh cited the Maa community leaders who have succeeded in bringing down the vice through engaging all the stakeholders in their areas of jurisdiction.
“Let us save the girl child from early marriages and give her opportunity to continue with her learning to achieve higher education. It is the responsibility of parents to save this generation by emulating the Maasai and others in semi arid areas who have succeeded in reversing the trend through engaging all to end the silent epidemic,” she urged.
Hon. Shebesh who was in the Coastal region on a working visit, made these remarks when she addressed residents of Malindi Sub County during International Day To End Obstetric Fistula Now, an event held at Alaskan Grounds.
Earlier, Hon Shebesh accompanied by Kilifi County Woman Representative Hon. Gertrude Mbeiyu, visited the Malindi Sub County Hospital where she was conducted to a tour of the institution by the Medical Superintendent Ms Hossan Ajuck.
During the tour, the CAS distributed medical aid kits to recuperating fistula patients donated by the AMREF Health Africa and also visited the GBV centre, where she revealed that the Ministry is partnering with County Women Representatives in all 47 counties in coordinating the war against GBV and also in ending fistula health menace.
“As we are aware, Gender-Based Violence (GBV) is one of the most pervasive human rights violations of our time. In our country, it’s a worringly high endemic with violence against women and girls,”Hon. Shebesh stated.
Noting that the vice undermines health, dignity, security and autonomy of its victims, Hon. Shebesh revealed that despite the victims suffering in silence, many of them often suffer sexual and reproductive health infections including forced and unwanted pregnancies, unsafe abortions, traumatic fistula and sexually transmitted diseases.
“Men must change their attitudes and norms towards gender-based domestic violence as well as marrying under aged girls and put them on notice that they will face the full force of law,” she asserted.
“On our part, the government has opened Rescue Centres in various parts of the country, which epitomises the great strides the country has taken to significantly address issues of GBV,” she affirmed.
At another event organized by the County Woman Representative held at Malindi DCC grounds, Hon Shebesh disbursed Ksh 9.2 million from National Government Affirmative Action Fund (NGAAF), Ksh 4.3 million in aid of 26 women groups from the Women Enterprise Fund (WEF) and Ksh 7.6 million from Uwezo in aid of 60 groups in Malindi sub county.