The New Times (Kigali)

23 January 2013

Rwanda: Gender Based Violence Cases Down 3.9 Percent

Gender Based Violence (GBV) cases have gone down from 3,585 in 2011 to 3,444 last year, according to a recent report by the Rwanda National Police (RNP).

According to the report, defilement tops the list among all the other GBV committed crimes.

The report also says 1,247 defilement cases were committed between January and September last year. Twenty nine of the cases were males who were defiled.

There were 401 cases of defilement between October and December of last year, with 15 committed against men. Defilement recorded 1,733 cases in 2011, up from 1,654 registered in the year 2010.

The second most committed crime last year, was assault, with 578 cases throughout the year, according to the police report released last week

Rape came third with 255 cases registered between January and December 2012.

In 2011, defilement topped the list of GBV cases with over 1,000 reported cases. Assault and rape followed with 543 and 287.

Defilement, assault and rape have been the top three committed GBV crimes in the last two consecutive years. Among the other mostly registered cases in the 2012 police GBV report included abortion, threats, arson, infanticide and harassment among many others.

CIP Lynder Nkuranga, the Director for the Anti GBV Desk at RNP, noted that they were able to register a decline mainly through community-based initiatives.

"Community policing in the fight against GBV is an important approach of preventing and responding to issues of GBV. Through sensitisation programmes, people are now aware that police is a safe net, therefore reporting GBV cases hence increasing percentage of disclosure and reported information," she added.

She further observed that while laws are vital to help combat GBV, the main solution is to change the way people think.

Nkuranga called for everyone's involvement to help bring an end to the pervasive, and often deadly, acts of GBV.

In Kigali City, there were 29 cases of defilement, five rape cases and 14 cases of assault reported to police as of 2012.

There were 12 defilement cases, 12 assault cases and three rape cases in the Northern Province, while 19 defilement cases, eight for assault and two for rape, were reported in the Western Province.

Forty four cases of defilement, 16 of assault and four cases of rape were registered by Police from the Eastern Province in the year 2012, while 30 defilement cases, six for assault and five for rape, were recorded in the Southern Province according to the 2012 Police GBV report.

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