Zanzibar — OUT of the 1,005 child abuse incidents recorded between July last year and April this year in Zanzibar, cases of rape lead with 480 children molested, the House of representatives was informed.
According to the Minister responsible for Women and Children Development, Ms Zainab Omar Mohammed, molestations come second with 274 cases recorded, and teenage pregnancy is the third with 176 incidents.
"These disappointing statistics were collected from One Stop Centre in Unguja and Pemba. We need do something urgently to stop women and children abuse in Zanzibar," said the minister.
Ms Zainab informed the House that a total of 53 male children were defiled and 22 teenage girls disappeared with men. She said that most of the cases are still pending in courts of law, with only a few perpetrators punished. Almost all backbenchers who spoke in the House were furious about the report of abuse in Zanzibar.
They asked the government to review the laws and push the police and magistrates give such abuse a priority. In another development, the legislators were told that all houses in Zanzibar may in the near future have official registration numbers which are vital in national planning.
Shehas (community leaders) have been given register books to record all houses in their areas. The exercise will be followed by numbering, provision of post codes and updating of streets," said the State Minister for Regional Administration, Dr Mwinyihaji Makame Mwadini.
He was responding to a question asked by Ms Farida Amour Mohammed (CUF - Women) who wanted to know why houses in Ole Ward (Shehia), Pemba lacked identification numbers.
"I ask all Zanzibaris to be patient as the exercise of house registration continues," the minister said adding that the project is being implemented in collaboration with Tanzania Communication Regulatory Authority (TCRA).