The NGO-Gender Coordination Network (NGO-GCN) has drilled women in Nsanje on how to defend their rights.
Speaking on Saturday during a meeting with community members and traditional leaders at Nsanje Boma, the NGO’s facilitator Austin Liffa said some of the perpetrators of gender-based violence (GBV) are family members.
“GBV cases are rampart not only in Nsanje, but the whole country at large,” he said.
When Liffa asked the women to cite GBV cases in the district, they mentioned marital rape, being denied a chance to participate in economic activities, property grabbing and forced early marriages.
One of the participants shared her story about sexual abuse.
She narrated that her husband took her to a traditional healer who demanded to touch her private parts for healing.
Another woman, Matness Chimsungwi, also told the meeting a story of a student who was raped and withdrew from school due to stigma.
She said the girl’s attacker fled to Mozambique, but she encouraged the girl to go to the hospital where she was counseled.
On his part, Senior Chief Malemia said he was pleased the NGO had empowered women in the district on how to defend their rights.
The NGO is implementing a one-year project called Women Movement Amplify with funding from the Spotlight Initiative in Nsanje, Machinga, Dowa, Ntchisi, Mzimba and Nkhata Bay districts.