Mombasa leads Coast in sexual violence - Daily Nation

Mombasa tops Coast sexual violence cases, survey shows

Friday April 7 2017

A man looks at photos at an exhibition on sexual violence in Kenya. Mombasa County leads in sexual violence cases at the Coast, a new survey shows. PHOTO | SULEIMAN MBATIAH | NATION MEDIA GROUP

A man looks at photos at an exhibition on sexual violence in Kenya. Mombasa County leads in sexual violence cases at the Coast, a new survey shows. PHOTO | SULEIMAN MBATIAH | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By WINNIE ATIENO
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Mombasa County leads in sexual violence cases at the Coast, a new survey shows.

The county had a total of 433 cases in the last 10 years.

Lamu County recorded the lowest with 73 cases.

A total of 199 women, 123 girls, 47 men and 64 boys have experienced sexual violence in Mombasa.

In Lamu, 26 women, 11 girls, 27 male and nine boys were sexually assaulted, the Health Assistance of Kenya (HAK) said.

The organisation rescues women and girls who have undergone sexual violence.

It indicated that women and girls underwent psychological torture, child neglect, physical assault, denial of resources, defilement, child abduction, rape, forced marriages, sodomy, sexual harassment, child labour and child torture.

Taita Taveta had 185 cases of sexual violence, Kilifi 95, Tana River 86 and Kwale 81.

MEN SILENT

HAK executive director Fanis Lisiagazi said the data from 2007 to 2017 shows that men do not speak out on sexual abuses due to cultural barriers.

She said most victims, especially married women, do not report such cases due to fear of ruining their marriages.

“Others blamed drugs, the devil or alcohol,” she added.

The lobby group is in the region to create awareness on sexual violence in efforts to curb the vice.

“Nairobi is leading, having reported a total of 4,516 cases. The cases at the Coast region are less due to underreporting. People are not coming out to speak about sexual violence due to culture or lack of awareness,” said HAK programmes manager Pascal Oredo.

HOTLINE

Speaking at Castle Royal Hotel in Mombasa, Mr Oredo urged Coast residents to report cases of sexual violence to the national gender-based violence hotline 1195.

The organisation receives around 200 distress calls daily with six from the Coast.

She said the hotline is underutilised at the Coast.

Ms Lisiagazi said stigma and fear have prevented many victims from reporting the cases.

“If we are open enough we can fight this vice. We must report early warnings.

“We want to protect women and girls during the electioneering period. Women should also stop chopping men’s genitals, it is not fair,” she added.

She said 90 per cent of rape and defilement victims are infected with HIV/Aids.

“That is why we must end sexual violence if we want to stop the spread of HIV/Aids,” she added.

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