‘Better nurturing of children  may create GBV free society’

06Dec 2022
The Guardian Reporter
The Guardian
‘Better nurturing of children  may create GBV free society’

THERE is need for good parenting if families are to fight and do away with gender based violence in their communities and Tanzania at large.

This is likely to build good communication in the family, creating well upbringing of children which may result into a non violence and sexual abuse societies.

The Senior Assistant Commissioner of Police, David Misime said over the weekend while commemorating International Day of People with Disabilities that was sponsored by Marie Stopes Tanzania and celebrated at the national level in Mpwapwa district, Dodoma region.

Misime said women need to be firm and set up issues that can build and keep the family together and refrain from sexual abuse, violence against women and early marriages.

He said President Samia Suluhu Hassan while addressing the National Women’s Organisation, known by its Kiswahili acronym as Umoja wa Wanawake Tanzania (UWT) in Dar es Salaam, stressed the cessation of acts of sexual violence against people living with disabilities and gender based violence.

“I am asking local government authorities to identify people living with disabilities so that they can be protected and get the needed assistance,” Misime said.

He said the police force created a unit to identify people living with disabilities during the time when the people with albinism were being hunted and killed in order to protect, defend and care for them.

“If people living with disabilities are recognized and given a chance, they can use the abilities they have to support themselves through income generation,” he said.

The International Day of People with Disabilities celebrations collides with the 16 days of activism to end violence against women, an annual global campaign, which runs from November 25-December 10 under the theme: “Take Action to Prevent Femicide Against Women.”

It raises awareness about GBV and calls for global action and advocacy efforts to end violence against women and girls. 

Misime further said the Tanzania Police Force Network (TPF net, gender desk) will continue to collaborate with the Tanzania Federation of Disabled People’s  Organisation (commonly known by its Kiswahili acronym of Shivyawata while urging those perpetuating acts of sexual abuse, violence against women and cruel acts against people with disabilities to stop.

Speaking at the event, Josephat Maganga, Mpwapwa district commissioner who represented Dodoma regional commissioner Rosemary Senyamule said International Day of People with Disabilities was being commemorated in recognition of their rights and participation in various economic activities.

“We know that people with disabilities face numerous challenges, this day therefore, also focus on how best we can help them to solve those challenges they face,” he said.

According to him, there were at least 30,000 people living with disabilities in Dodoma region.He said the government will ensure that the people with disabilities have access to all social services like education, health and the right to information.

He encouraged people with disabilities to take advantage of the 2 percent loans offered by the district councils, directing all councils in the region to give priority to people with disabilities.

Dodoma region has already dished out 290 million/- to over 50 groups of people with disabilities in 2021/2022 fiscal year with at least 173million/- loans being disbursed in 2020/2021 fiscal year.

Speaking on behalf of Marie Stopes Tanzania(MST) a health organisation that sponsored the event, the organisation’s advocacy and communication's manager, Ester Shedafa said the 16 days of activism to end violence against women, and the International Day of People with Disabilities need to be a reminder to everyone to say no to sexual abuse and gender based violence.

She acknowledged MST’s collaboration with the police, saying collaboration has helped MST to train over 300 police officers on various issues related to reproductive health since 2018.

“We thank the Police Force for trusting in us and giving us the opportunity, to be the main sponsor of the event today as we commemorate the International Day of People with Disabilities and 16 days of activism to end violence against women.

Shedafa said MST was also collaborating with the government through the ministry of health on maternal health care provision.

“MST has been implementing various projects including education on reproductive health issues for young people, gender violence and sexual abuse and the participation of people with disabilities in reproductive health,” she said.

She added, “It is in the same context of providing education that Marie Stopes has also been able to collaborate with the Ministry of Health in coordinating various guidelines related to issues of gender and sexual violence, including the participation of men in reproductive health.”

MST has among others helped to come up with the guideline for coordinating and connecting the victims of sexual violence with the police gender desk.

“Therefore, when we celebrate 16 days of anti-violence, we as Marie Stopes will continue to collaborate with the police gender desk to ensure that we reduce the challenges of gender-based violence.

Marie Stopes also aims to raise awareness of reproductive health issues and sexual violence for people with disabilities, all this is to ensure that no one is left behind, she said.

The International Day of People with Disability is commemorated on December 3 every year and enables people with disabilities to showcase their talents, business activities and also speak out on numerous challenges they face.

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