The levels of violence against women are shocking and show that two out of three women have experienced violence from their partners during their life time.
The statement was made by Honiara City Council Mayor Andrew Mua who was the guest of honor at the Media for Campaign on the Elimination of Violence Against Women and Children last Friday with the theme ‘NAF NAO'.
“Domestic Violence is perhaps the worst form of violence remaining hidden and unattended to since it occurs in private homes where it is rarely discussed very often considered as culturally acceptable.
“Often cases of domestic violence are not reported to the Police and even there are investigations and prosecutions of these crimes, they are given low priority,” he said.
He said the level of violence women have experienced in our own country range from intimidation, threats, beatinigs, rape, forced prostitution and even murder by family members including husbands, boyfriends, brothers and fathers.
“Any such violence is a grave violation of Human Rights and has a devastating impact on women in Solomon Isladns, families, communities and societies,”he said.
Mr Mua stressed at the launch that the Government is stepping up its efforts to protect women through comprehensive legislation improved law enforcement, better services for victims, stronger partnerships with civil societ and increased efforts to engage men and youth in addressing the problem.
“I take this opportunity to personally assure you that Honiara City Council and our National Government is behind this effort.
“Women are equal partners to men therefore we should not use our fist, legs and whatever objects to hit a woman, they are part of our ownself. Women and men have to be in partnership,” Mr Mua said.
Ethel Sigimanu Permanent Secretary for Women, Youth and Children Affairs speaking at the launch said violence against women and children in Solomon Islands is real.
Ms Sigimanu also thanked speech and poem winners of the media campaign to take part in the campaign, “one is never too young to take the responsibility to stop the violence that affects us.”
She also thanks the dessimination team for passing the domestic violence issues to provinces to take responsibility to stop violence against women and children.
“The team has given us strenghts to meet the objectives on the research on Gender based violence and ensure that this nation is proactive to eliminate violence against women and children.
“We who are driving the campaign must always work to continue the momentum, every step we take will stop violence, zero tolearance of violence means we must have more toleration of people of all genders of ethnicity,” she said.
Launch was attended by diplomats, NGO and Government representatives' students and the media.
Along with the Media for Campaign Against Women and children launch a domestic violence song was launched which was composed by former Solo Icon singer, David Auna and Ronnie Riti.
The Media Launch for Campaign on the Elimination of Violence Against Women and Children is supported by MYWCA, SPC AusAID and UNPFA.