SOURCE: Capital News

The government has announced the first national plan to end gender-based violence (GBV), following up on years of concerted efforts to address the issue and provide safety to those affected.

Speaking during the launch of the Protection Against Domestic Violence Rules on Monday, Gender and Public Service Cabinet Secretary Aisha Jumwa declared that the government will have zero tolerance on GBV.

She explained that the rules will establish clear guidelines for obtaining protection orders, ensuring survivors can access swift and effective legal remedies.

“The government has a zero tolerance on GBV so today I want to declare total war on GBV and aa a Cabinet Secretary, I want to assure you I will at the forefront because am a survivor/victim of this, but I have healed and I want the society to be free from GBV,” she said.

“The rules emphasize the importance of prevention and early intervention, underlining the need and responsibility by legal duty bearers to handle survivors with compassion, while ensuring the perpetrators are held accountable for their actions.”

Jumwa added that the government is working towards establishing a GBV survivor’s fund.

The fund will be through a co-financing model in partnership with private sector, civil society, and other stakeholders for economic empowerment of GBV survivors.

She said GBV survivors have had trouble getting a P3 form, because the form costs a significant amount of money and asking for it will make the survivor be re-victimized.

“Justice to survivors is at the police and it is very sad that today a survivor is required to pay between Sh1000- 3000 to acquire a P3 form, and since acquiring P3 is the first step to acquire justice then I request this service be rendered free of charge,” she added.

Jumwa said the Protection Rules against GBV underscore the importance of public awareness and community engagement.

She stated that this will challenge the social norms and attitudes that perpetuate domestic violence even as the rule of law takes effect.

“Through targeted awareness campaigns, education initiatives, and community dialogues, we aim to foster a society that embraces equality, respect, and non-violence,” she added.

The CS called for collective efforts of all stakeholders including government, development partners, civil society, community leaders, and every Kenyan citizen to ensure effective implementation of this rules.

The Kenya Demographic and Health Survey of 2022 shows that 34 per cent of women in Kenya have experienced physical violence since the age of 15 years.

The data show that 20 per cent of women aged 15–19 have experienced physical violence since age 15, as compared with 42 per cent of women age 45–49.

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