Violence blamed on poverty - UHRC

By Vision Reporter

THE high level of poverty has increased cases of gender-based violence, the Uganda Human Rights Commission has said.

By Joyce Namutebi

THE high level of poverty has increased cases of gender-based violence, the Uganda Human Rights Commission has said.

“Women are affected by poverty more than men and this increases their dependency on men for survival and support,” said commissioner Grace Akello.

She explained that poverty weakens women’s bargaining power in sexual relations.

Akello was speaking at the launch of 16 days of activism against gender-based violence at the Grand Imperial Hotel in Kampala last Wednesday.

She called on the Government to start income-generating projects for vulnerable women to help them become self reliant.

Akello also observed that the failure to report cases had increased violence incidents.

“Many female victims of gender-based violence are tied to their cultural beliefs and do not report cases.”

Other women, she said, do not report cases for fear of stigmatisation.
Akello called for the adoption of a human rights-based approach to prevent violence, saying it would enhance participation of the victims in decision-making.

“The Government, in cooperation with the international community, should ensure that women subjected to violence have specialised assistance such as physical and psychological rehabilitation, counselling, health and social services.”

She urged UN member states to adopt sanctions in domestic legislation to punish and redress violence.

Violence blamed on poverty - UHRC