National Theme: From Peace In The Home To Peace In The Nation; End Violence Against Women.
The Global Campaign of Activism Against Based Gender Violence (GBV) is undertaken annually during the period starting November 25th; the International Day for Elimination of Violence against Women and ending on December 10th International Human Rights Day. The 16 Days Campaign is observed by actors in Government, Civil Society, Local Communities and Development Partners to organize and speak out for increased attention to the prevalence and occurrence of Gender Based Violence and to call for action to prevent GBV and respond appropriately to incidence of GBV. The Sixteen days of activism aims at raising awareness, influencing behavior change and securing high level political commitment to end gender violence. The focus on collective action by all stakeholders steams from the fact that interventions to address GBV are multi-sectoral in nature and require stakeholders to execute their various responsibilities to prevent and respond to GBV.
Situation of GBV in Uganda
Ending violence against women remains an important element in the fight against Gender Based Violence. By definition GBV is a term used to describe any harmful act that is perpetrated against a persons will on the basis of un equal relations between men and women as well as through abuse of power, GBV and in particular, sexual and physical Violence is widespread in Uganda. However women and girls are the majority of victims and survivors of violence, hence the emphasis on ending violence among women and girls. The empirical evidence from the surveys conducted in Uganda show that violence against women and girls is unacceptably high.
Uganda Women’s Network (UWONET) is joining the rest of the world to observe the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Based Violence through strengthening local networks in the fight against Gender Based Violence and raising awareness about the vice at the local and national levels.
An SMS Campaign is one of the means UWONET is using to raise awareness about the vice among its members, partners and allies.
Text message 1;
Welcome 2 the UWONET 16 Days of Activism against Gender Based Violence SMS Campaign. “From Peace in the Home 2 peace in the nation: End Violence Against Women.”
Text message 2;
Gender-based violence (GBV) reinforces inequities between men and women and compromises the health and dignity of survivors. Join the activism to End GBV Reply 0775915607
- “Yes I will. Let’s join our hands together and achieve the common goal. Thanks”. Hakim Lubega, Isingoro District
- “In Lamwo GBV is high and some people are being cut to death”. Christine Aciro, Lamwo District
- “I condemn GBV in Lamwo district”. Hon. Ochen LCV Lamwo District
- “Good move. I have always loved gender based activism. We could work out something together. I can make a song about this move and we see what’s up”. Agaba Ezra CJ Former Mr. FOWODE
- “In reference to your message concerning GBV against women, I have done research in that area and am so concerned about it. I would be glad to be part of the action”.
- “Yes. Let’s join to end Gender Based Violence”. Claire Dewayo Makerere University
- “GBV is violence perpetrated against a person basing on their gender, therefore in my case to stop this act, we must look at the law as one of the strongest influence in case we are to win e.g. the indirect and direct laws that have continued to promote these acts and also the act of silence should be eliminated therefore we need live testimonies to win (we go we go women and men because we can’t win without all the stakeholders)”. Tumusiime Immaculate, Student, Makerere University
- “GBV is evil in all its manifestations. Am joining you in its total condemnation”. Bamusede Bwambale, Kasese District
- “Am ready to join you in the sensitization against gender based violence in our communities”. Mpaata George, Kaliro District
- “End Gender Based Violence (GBV)”. Edward Bindhe, Masaka District
- “Provision of counseling services to victims. Some stakeholders should work with district to ensure women are empowered to be aware of their reproductive rights and engage their partners by way of demanding for their active participation on the issues”. Grace, Kitgum District
Text message 3;
Violence Against Women (VAW) is one of the most widespread human rights violations yet one of the least prosecuted crimes. Join the activism to End GBV Reply 0775915607
- “UCOBAC recognizes GBV as key in causing poverty in Busoga Region. Measures are being put in place to stop the actions against women”. Nathan Kaina, Bugiri District
- “It’s very important to sensitise couple on gender based violence so that they know their rights. James Koch, Lamwo Town Council”.
- “End GBV Now”. Innocent Atuhaire, Kanungu District
- “Human rights are rights that every person has because they are human beings. VAW is directly acted on women and girls e.g. wife beating, honour killings, FGM, rape, early marriages, defilement, prostitution and so on. These acts are used as weapons to destroy women at all costs and the most hurting issue is that the state pays less attention call it no strict laws and punishments given sickening e.g no law on human trafficking, divorce bill, inheritance rights etc. therefore women and girls are always the victims and less is done. Therefore we need a revision of the constitution first for human rights to be achieved”. Tumusiime Immaculate, Student Makerere University, Kampala District
- “Thank you for considering me and putting your hope in me as one of those who can carry the banner for GBV. Please register my name as a member. Be blessed”. Benson Semondo
- “Yes. Let us spread actions to condemn and stop SGBV” Prof. Josephine Ahikire, Kampala District
- “GBV indeed is the least prosecuted but with very loud noise and serious sensitization some change can be realized”. Drajita Rasul, Yumbe District
- “Am already an advocate and women rights activist in Abim Distrisct. Bravo UWONET”. Ochen Nesto, Abim District
- “I would like to be a member of end GBV activism group”. Dr. Consolata Kabonesa, Kampala District
- “Ever thought that the least prosecuted is also the least reported crimes? By the time women report after being violated, they have really gone through a lot”.
- “I Freda Nakaibale have joined the activism”. Freda Nakaibale, Iganga District
- “Thanks for the concern. I am with you”. Josephine Kalule, Kampala District
- “It will be part of my daily work to at least preach against GBV”.
- “It’s a worthwhile campaign keep it up”. Salume Ofwono, Kampala District
- Am in
Text message 4;
GBV is sustained by a culture of silence and denial of the seriousness of the health consequences of abuse. Join the activism to End GBV Reply 0775915607
- “GAD – socially constructed, violence – intentional act aimed at causing harm to a person. COS – is when people pay a blind eye to some injustices like wife beating, FGM, rape, trafficking and its problems. These acts cause health implications to women e.g. psychological torture, HIV, stigma, body damage due to acid attacks e.t.c and in most cases leading to battered woman syndrome. Therefore we need to improve counseling centres, medical attendants, involve the police, government, judiciary and may be try to influence votes as we have a say “power lies in the hands of women”. Tumusiime Immaculate, Student Makerere University, Kampala District
- ”I join the campaign against GBV. End Violence against women”. Pamela Mugisa Kethro
- “Stop GBV, denial of girl child education and rights of properties to women. Educate girl child, educate the nation”. Christine Aciro, Lamwo District
- “Lack of communication and understanding of each other cause GBV. Let’s talk, break the silence”. Ruth Rutaro, Kampala District
- “Thank you UWONET for this campaign. I think you need to go to these telecom companies and they give you people’s numbers especially from Busoga Region and you text to stop GBV”
- “Thanks UWONET. We need to involve men and engage them in working as change agents in reducing GBV through community dialogue” Atim Agnes Prossy, FOKAPAWA, Agago district
- “To break the silence and denials calls for involvement of many stakeholders including Religious leaders through continuous sensitization. I join you in the activism”
Text message 5;
7,690 girls defiled in 2011 but 3,836 suspects arrested. Please observe a moment of silence for the survivors. Join the activism to End GBV Reply 0775915607
- “The core cause of GBV is abuse of power. There is need to address power holders to appreciate and change their attitudes”.
- “The fight must continue. God bless”
- “Surely this is an evil, that we have to condemn. You can imagine 7690 defiled and only 3836 arrested, there is laxity in enforcement of laws to this effect”. Moses Okoed, Kampala district UDN
- “It’s a pity, such cases need formation of coalitions at all levels in order to fight for the rights of girls and set up resolutions to punish the perpetrators”
- “We need to expand the scope of arrest even social courts to create sufficient shame and guilt”. Josephine Ahikire, Kampala District
- “Ensuring effective enforcement of laws protecting women and children against rape and defilement is key”.
- “AMEN. The number of culprits arrested doesn’t mean anything because I doubt if those are the real figures. From what I understand there are so many cases not reported and by the way why is defilement there? Should we blame the parents, community or the government for failing to implement strict rules, punishments and the culture of silence? We need punishments like firing squad, castration, 50 years imprisonment, I think they will help deter others from committing the same crimes because the girl child deserves better than that.” Tumusiime Immaculate, Student Makerere University, Kampala District
- “Families of survivors need to support police and other service providers end impunity” Annet Were Munabi, Wasiko District
Text message 6 & 7;
520women raped in 2011 but 269 suspects arrested. Please observe a moment of silence for the survivors. Join the activism to End GBV Reply 0775915607
251women murdered in 2011 due to domestic violence but 181cases investigated. Please pay tribute to the lives lost – RIP. Join the activism to End GBV Reply 0775915607
- “Gender based violence should end thanks for the struggle”. Akullo Brenda, Otuke Distict
- “This is quite disappointing. There is need to join hands for more awareness creation”. Edward Nabugho, Iganga District
- “Breaking silence, cautioning police, LCs against settling GBV cases outside court plus supporting local activists with books of law and judgment sheets on GBV prevention. Need for follow up with local activists”. Lugada Richard, Buyende District
- “So many girls were raped, abducted and killed yet the culprits are free. Observe the moment of silence for those who lost their lives”. Christine Aciro, Lamwo District
- “Yes we must fight to end GBV. Please don’t give up”. Joyce Baayenda, Jinja District
- “First of all rapists are not far from murderers and are not strangers in their own communities. They should be declared misfits in their communities besides stringent legal measures. Those unknown but not arrested should be punished on both and print electronic media so that they are withdrawn from circulation voluntarily due to fear”
- “My role as a project staff is to raise awareness and build capacity of community groups to act as whistle blowers in order to end GBV”. Thanks UWONET Micheal Ejakait, Kamuli District
- “Thank you for the message you have sent to me. As GBV is concerned I am an activist working with NACWOLA in partnership with Action Aid International. As an activist there is still lack of capacity in terms of training and resources to manage GBV under similar establishment”. Monica Kawuuda, Namutamba District
Text message 8;
Violence Against Women is not solely a woman’s issue. It diminishes each and every one of us. Join the activism to End GBV Reply 0775915607
- “Yes it isn’t solely women issue but women activists should not make it look only like a women’s war. Men should be recruited to also champion activism”.
- “I am part of the struggle to end violence against women always”. Achola Rosario, Kampala District
- “Yes. We all stand to gain from a violence free environment. Men women and children”. Josephine Ahikire, Kampala district
- “VAW is mainly found in villages. More sensitization, workshops and radio programmes should be conducted”. David Waiswa, Buyende District
- “Hullo UWONET, End GBV! Am in support of the activism and would love to be a part of it. Let’s end violence against women”. Alex Isingom, Kampala District
- “Each one of us at family, village and community should break the silence on GBV”. Manisurah Ahebwa, Kampala District
- “GBV is a terrible scourge of our time. I rank it to slavery and apartheid as a social evil. What we see is a quarter of the reality; let us act now to save life” Ngobi
Text message 9:
What are the most common forms of harmful practices in your community? What steps have been taken to address them? Join the activism to End GBV Reply0775915607
- Defilement. Penalizing perpetrators is the way to do. There is also need to do lots of sensitization on the matter.
- Yes I would like to join
- Land grabbing by clansmen from widows and women having no say on family finances which come from their sweat.
- Early marriage. Large number of children. Genital mutilation. What has been done? Training in family planning, community dialogues and local to local methods.
- It can work better if all LC 1 leaders are oriented on GBV Act
- The most common form of harmful practices are theft, playing cards, violence against women. The steps that have been carried out are sensitizing the community. and we have formed committees on parish levels that deals with counseling and settling domestic violence issues we refer them to policies and NGOs that works with domestic violence cases
- Making GBV history without looking at how history shapes GBV is a nightmare, GBV takes on psychological and emotional torture (quarrelling, deserting families), physically beating, indifference by men etc. there is poor response to GBV because even duty bearers are perpetrators. Survivors fear to seek redress because men fire back and society wants them to stay. Thanks Ngobi
- Physical and emotional violence, most of the victims report the case to the police and they are counseled. I strongly rally behind zero tolerance of domestic violence against women in Uganda
Text message 10;
What are the most common forms of violence against women, men &children? Where can survivors report &receive help? Join the activism2End GBV Reply0775915607
- They are: rape, defilement, murder and rejection of girl child education. Steps; reporting to police, sensitizing people, courts of law
- I my community the most harmful form of violence is sexual harassment of women which even the victims fear to talk about it. Women need to respect themselves by saying NO. Moses, UDN
- The most common forms of violence against women, men and children are; physical, emotional, economic and sexual violence. The survivors should report to local council, police, court, probation officer, family court, paralegals in the community. As far as rape cases are concerned, the problem is with the government officials who are corrupt i.e. police and judiciary. Let there be a law which is clear to protect the survivors
- At rainbow radio in Nebbi we are offering full support for 16 days of activism, we are using UWONET’s information to stimulate debate. David Rupiny
- The most forms of violence are sexual abuse, physical abuse, emotional (name calling, slander in front of the children) help can be got from counseling centres, police (CFPU), local leaders, toll free helplines
- Some women became slaves in their homes. They can dig from morning up to evening from fetching water, look for food. The man comes back very late ask for food from drinking place. They don’t have paraffin. She informed him about the light…..
- Rape and defilement
- VAW over land issue especially unmarried women. But the cultural leader and the elders are working hard to see that women have been empowered to access to the land
Text message 11;
More than 600,000women&girls around the world are trafficked across borders,the vast majority 4sexual exploitation.Join the activism2End GBV Reply0775915607
- Thanks UWONET for bringing the light to our country Uganda
- I join you in the prevention and fight against GBV. We all have a role to play
- Thanks for the messages. Am with you but I have one challenge. Kemmge am handling an issue where a man is threatening to kill his wife over property. Where can I take her for security?
- What I saw on t.v was a good move. The posters thing. Men need to be educated about these issues more and more. Some guys think its fun to slap ladies once in a while.
- Me I witness from Bibia border towards Sudan. Women and girls are totally exposed to sexual exploitation mostly unmarried women, positive women and drop-out school girls and women you react with them, most of them talk of poverty. Inorder to end GBV we have to call upon more actors to acquaint themselves with the relevant instruments against GBV and joint in the fight in the fight against all kinds of violence women and girls. Foster state accountability and commitment by developing and enforcing policies, laws and programmes to integrate GBV abandonment into development programmes
- It is true this is happening but culprits should be brought to book if caught and I suggest that people should be aware. Thank you!
Text message 12;
We support the right of every human being 2 live in dignity,peace,free from discrimination,exclusion &violence.Do you?Join the activism 2End GBV Reply0775915607
- Yes I support the right of every human being
- Indeed nobody deserves all or any of these vices. The struggle must continue
- I do support the right of every human being 2 live in dignity, peace, free from discrimination, exclusion and violence. Let us join the activism to end GBV
- Yes I do. And I do join
- I strongly do. I invite you to strongly involve Karamoja women in the movement
Text message 13;
Advocate for legislative reform and enforcement of laws for the promotion and the protection of women’s rights.Join the activism 2End GBV Reply0775915607
- Discrimination of women and children in decision making, ownership of productive resources, battering by men, sexual and psychological harassment, wife beating by men Kataike Sara,
- In Abim district, GBv is accelerated by heavy alcoholic consumption. Common forms include physical battering, denial to the means of production, defilement, conniving to marry underaged girl children, unequal sharing of responsibilities and failure to go for ante natal services together. We are doing everything possible to address this as UWONET women rights activists. Thanks for our joint struggles. Nesto Ochen, Abim district
- In cooperation and networking with legal institutions
Text message 14;
GBV has devastating consequences not only 4 victims but 4 society.What can we do 2 make our families safer & happier? Join the activism 2End GBV Reply0775915607
- A lot of efforts should be directed towards community policing and expeditious apprehension of perpetrators. Nesto
- Thanks for the VAW prevention messages
- Train children early about GBV and its consequences
- Embracing dialogue and mutual understanding Kaviri Ali, President FOWODE Young leaders
Text message 15;
Peace starts with you. You can create peace by preventing Gender-based violence. Join the activism 2End GBV Reply0775915607
- We should be peace makers in our families and in society.
- Sensitization on radio
- I have sensitized people about domestic violence in my community mainly on women and children
Text message 16;
Promote zero tolerance of all forms of GBV and Commit to keeping GBV in the spotlight as a major health and human rights concern.Join the activism2End GBV Reply0775915607
- Condemn GBV in the strongest terms possible. We should use all means including community pressure and theatre. Josephine Ahikire, Kampala District
- To make our families safer and happier, the married say sorry and love for each other
- Thanks so much for those great messages. Hope our target groups have listened and will have a positive change
- Let’s empower them economically, socially, politically e.t.c.
Text message 17;
The 16 days of activism against GBV came to an end yesterday. Thank you for participating in the SMS Campaign. Enjoy a violence FREE X-mas holiday and new year 2013