RWANDA: Govt to Set Up Centres to Treat Victims of GBV

Friday, October 19, 2012
All Africa
Central Africa
PeaceWomen Consolidated Themes: 
General Women, Peace and Security
Sexual and Gender-Based Violence

The UN Women, in Partnership with the Ministry of Health, plans to establish one-stop centres to combat domestic violence in every district in order to extend services closer to victims.

UN Women specialist, Dona Kamashazi, announced this at a news briefing in Kigali yesterday ahead of the Global Open Day for Women and Peace.

According to police, 1,244 Gender Based Violence (GBV) cases were recorded between January and April this year. Assault topped the list with 205 cases and 93 incidents of rape.

Kamashazi said the one-stop centre programme was spearheaded by the ministry.

"The centres will be established in districts to provide services to GBV victims in the country," she disclosed.

She added it would help victims of violence, especially in rural areas who cannot report such cases due to lack of facilities. Currently, there are only two such centres; in Kigali and Rusizi District in the Western Province.

Rwanda is one of the countries selected to implement the UN Resolution 1325 to showcase achievements, challenges and the way forward.

The resolution aims at protecting women and girls during and after armed conflicts, and to fully involve females in conflict prevention, management and resolution, peace building and reconciliation.

Its implementation revolves around women's political participation, economic empowerment and strengthening of the rule of law and access to justice.

Kamashazi however stressed the need for more sensitisation campaigns as gaps still exist in terms of women participation in several aspects of society.

"Rwanda is among the few countries that have set up steering committees to implement the UN resolution 1325, spearheaded by the National Police and Rwanda Defence Forces," Kamashazi said.

"Through this, women have been able to take part in peace negotiations in various conflict areas. The RDF has also sent women to peace keeping missions as a way of implementing the UN resolution," she added.

According to the Ministry of Health, the centres are to be set up in different districts, in partnership with the Global Fund, USAID, UN Women among others.

"The UN Women has helped in providing the strategy and guidelines on GBV, the funding is from different partners. Setting up these centres also depends on accessibility," said Arthur Asiimwe the Director for communications at Rwanda Biomedical Centre.

To implement it, the police, military and the Rwanda Correctional Service established gender desks with the police credited for decentralising them to all police stations across the country.

The establishment of ISANGE One-Stop Centre, which provides free medical services to victims of GBV and initiatives in peacekeeping operations, is among efforts undertaken to combat the crime.