On the occasion of the 16 days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence (GBV)
As Zimbabwe joins the rest of the world in commemorating the 16 days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence (GBV) (25 November to 10 December), Zimbabwe Human Rights Association (ZimRights) notes with concern the increase in gender-based violence which was exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic induced lockdown.
Running under the global theme “Orange the World: Fund, Respond, Prevent, Collect!” the campaign this year seeks to galvanize partners to fund organizations to respond to survivors’ needs, prevent violence and collect data to build a post-pandemic “new normal”.
ZimRights, a grassroots organization, joins other grass-roots women’s organizations, national, regional and international non-governmental organizations, as well as United Nations agencies and governments in raising awareness, mobilizing constituents, demanding accountability and showcasing progress on eliminating gender-based violence (GBV). ZimRights firmly believes that a world without violence is possible.
As the world reels from the impact of Covid-19, reports have shown that all types of violence against women and girls have intensified and in a special report titled ‘Rights in Crisis: A Human Rights Analysis of the COVID-19 Pandemic in Zimbabwe’, highlights the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on Women and Girls in Zimbabwe. The report notes that in Zimbabwe, gender-based violence thrives on societal and cultural practices that accept the domination of women by men, especially in the home. Intimate partner violence is the most common and is fuelled by practices entrenched in patriarchal societal relations. The scourge of gender-based violence worsened due to the Covid-19 induced lockdown which has seen women and in some cases men, being trapped in abusive relationships thus fanning the fires of domestic violence. The United Nations notes that it’s Zimbabwean GBV sub cluster partners have assisted 129, 220 individuals (51, 342 males and 77 878 females) from 1 January 2020(Zimbabwe Cluster Status: Protection (Gender-based Violence)). These statistics reflect that both men and women have suffered gender-based violence.
ZimRights therefore calls upon government and all stakeholders to
- Eradicate all forms of gender based violence and more particularly violence against women and children ZimRights envisions
- A “new normal” that delivers a future without violence and again in particular for all women and girls
Issued by the ZimRights Information Department