Tanzania: Pro-Women Drive Gets Fresh Impetus

ACTORS from across the world have met in Dar es Salaam to discuss, among other issues, strengthening the capacity of regional and national institutions for violence against women (VAW) in data collection, analysis, dissemination and use, in line with globally agreed methodological and safety standards.

Tanzania has already formed more than 10,000 women and children protection committees from national to village levels, for best data collection, said the Deputy Minister for Heath, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children, Dr Faustine Ndugulile, when officiating a four-day workshop yesterday.

"We have already set supervisors of the committees to make sure that every reported violence case is addressed.

This is especially for villages where supervisors will be monitoring the cases reported to village leaders, including ten-cell leaders and ensure that justice is enforced," he said. The workshop is themed "Planning and Implementation of Prevalence Surveys on VAW".

The workshop, which is organised by the UN Women, also aims at discussing the current guidelines, principles and recommendations for implementation of VAW prevalence surveys, focusing on areas, including planning of data collection and analysis, to sharing and reporting of the results.

He affirmed that his office, in collaboration with the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, was looking forward to establishing gender desks at schools in the near future, to encourage children to report Gender- Based Violence (GBV) cases they face.

It is because the available data showed that most GBV cases to children were practiced within their families but nobody made disclosures, in order to protect relatives against punitive measures.

UN Women Representative Ms Hodan Addou commented that, collection of data on VAW is not business as usual because the collected information from women was deeply personal, sensitive and in many cases reported to anyone for the first time.

"And if data collection methods do not adhere to ethical and safety standards, it can put women survivors at greater risk of further violence," she said.

The Representative of the World Health Organisation (WHO) country office in Tanzania, Dr Tigest Ketsela, affirmed that the organisation had developed methods, measures and survey instruments to appropriately and ethically collect robust data and establish a robust evidence-based picture on the prevalence and drivers of violence against women starting in 1998.

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