Association of Progressive Women (APW) executive director Noel Msiska says improved response and prevention of violence against children will enable communities to uphold child rights in the country.
Speaking on Wednesday during a review of community court circuits in Mwanza under Securing Children’s Rights through Education and Protection programme with funds from Norwegian Church Aid through Save the Children Norway, he said there is need to enhance access to justice for deprived families.
Msiska said: “We intensified community court circuits on child abuse cases, including defilement and child marriages.
“This has enabled Mwanza Magistrate’s Court to hear cases on child abuse right in their villages. The initiative prevents child rights violations as would-be-offenders are frightened.”
He also said the project strives to transform harmful cultural and gender norms to curb vices against children in the district.
In her remarks, group village head Thambala of Traditional Authority (T/A) Kanduku commended the intervention, saying it has accelerated justice on child abuse cases.
During these village mobile court proceedings, Mwanza first grade magistrate Smart Maluwasa hears child abuse cases, especially defilement cases whose perpetrators are sentenced to a maximum of 14 years imprisonment.
So far in 2020, 11 defilement cases have been registered from all T/As in the district pending trial.