Gender-based crimes, including rape domestic violence and the abuse of defenceless women and children is on the increase in the Erongo Region.
This is evident from statistics made public by Detective Chief Inspector Selma Shangula of Nampol’s Woman and Child Protection Unit during the HIV-Aids and gender-based violence sensitisation gathering convened for the youth and local residents at Uis on Saturday.
Detective Inspector Shangula, who addressed Uis residents and those from neighbouring settlements, said since April 2014 until March 2015, 84 rape cases were reported in the region, with 393 domestic violence incidents reported. She said 600 assault cases were also reported in the region. Over the same period no less than 5 818 criminal cases were reported for the Erongo Region.
“These statistics illustrate crimes which were committed by members in our community against our brothers, sisters, wives, husbands, children and partners.” Shangula further said alcohol and drug abuse are the most common contributing factors, specifically in domestic violence and rape cases.
Shangula revealed that children are most likely to be abused by a relative, stepfathers, family friends, neighbours and sometimes biological parents or their guardians. “In many instance a lack of proper supervision results and such crimes committed against children,” she further elaborated.
As for domestic violence, apart from alcohol abuse, also jealousy, possessiveness and dependency tend to be key contributing factors, she noted.