Zimbabwe: Judiciary Service Commission Set Aside Special Courts for GBV, Sexual Abuse Cases

5 December 2019

Judicial Service Commission (JSC) secretary Walter Chikwanha has announced that the Commission has made a decision to set aside special courts to deal with Gender Based Violence (GBV) and sexual abuse matters.

Speaking at an event meant to commemorate GBV in Harare on Wednesday, Chikwanha said the courts are receiving overwhelming cases of GBV on a daily basis and in that respect, special courts have been set to deal with that.

"The choice of the Harare Magistrate Courts is not by coincident. It's by design because of the symbolic standing that this court has in fighting cases of Gender-Based Violence and sexual abuses, especially cases of rape," he said.

United Nations resident coordinator Maria Ribeiro commended the courts for becoming survivor-friendly and dealing with the perpetrators of rape and sexual abuse.

The country is in the midst of the 16 days of activism against Gender-Based Violence.

GBV undermines opportunities for women and denies them the ability to fully utilize their basic human rights.

In Zimbabwe, about one in three women aged 15 to 49 have experienced physical violence and about one in four women have experienced sexual violence since the age of 15, according to United Nations Population Fund (UNFP).

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