By Bennie Mundando

THE Non-governmental Gender Organisations Coordinating Council (NGOCC) says it is deeply saddened and in deep distress over the barbaric and evil nature of the defilement of a 2-year old girl in Kanyama Compound by a 53 year old man.

NGOCC Executive Director Engwase Mwale today said as the women’s movement, NGOCC was greatly perturbed at the increased cases of defilement especially against young girls.

Ms. Mwale said the increased defilement cases, especially involving children, were symptomatic of a deeply rooted moral and psychological catastrophe in the country adding that it was inconceivable how a 53-year old man could even think of forcing oneself on a 2-year old girl.

She said this trend seemed to be continuing even after the sad death of 3-days old of Luwingu District, Luapula Province and many others whose lives had been cut short in similar circumstances over the years.

In addition, many other women are similarly needlessly losing lives at the hands of intimate partners – with the latest one, Ms Anetty Lutanda of Chifunabuli District, again of Luapula Province, having met her fate in the last few days. This is totally absurd and a very concerning eventuality that should rob many Zambian citizens of their sleep.

NGOCC also condemns in the strongest terms the incident in Chifunabuli area of Mpika where a wife, Salome Mwila is alleged to have killed the husband, Julius Mwila, after a marital dispute. Violence of any nature should be condemned whether perpetrated by a man or woman. Clearly all current efforts to root out this evil in our society are proving inadequate and as a country, time has come for all of us to rise in a more concerted manner to find lasting resolve to this persistent evil hand,” Ms. Mwale said.

She said Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV) was not only criminal but an affront and a violation of the human rights of victims and survivors.

Unfortunately, in many ways than one, our communities have witnessed this heinous crime fall heavily on our young girls and children who are no longer safe anywhere. Surely, society owes it to these promising and yet so vulnerable souls to seriously redress this debilitating trend and give hope to the many such silent voices.

We wish to commend the alert members of the community in Kanyama who apprehended the suspect in the Kanyama incident and handed him to the authorities. It is NGOCC’s hope and conviction that as a country we can all stand up and consciously deal with the increasing cases of SGBV. We continue to call on an end to Sexual and Gender Based Violence of any form. Time is now for every Zambian to search ourselves and come to a point where we should each be the voice to end violence of any form and type in our spaces,” she said.

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