A public education campaign against Gender-Based Violence (GBV) is apparently paying off, as more cases are now being reported in Dar es Salaam region.
Social Welfare Officer for Amana Referral Hospital, Mr Sufiani Mdolwa said yesterday during a capacity building seminar to police officers in Dar es Salaam that, the hospital's Gender Desk receives not less than ten cases a day, with the increase attributed to public awareness campaign on the negatives impacts of GBV.
"An increase in reporting GBV cases is a huge achievement... it signifies that members of the community are now waging war against this deep-rooted problem," Mr Mdolwa said.
The two day seminar which winds up today, was organised by the hospital's Gender Desk Operators under the sponsorship of Women Fund -Tanzania.
Mr Mdolwa clarified that some cases reported to the desk are from various police stations, while others are reported straight by the victims after becoming aware of where to report.
"In collaboration with the Police Force, we have been conducting simple research and found that many people, especially women and children have experienced various types of violation but never reported anywhere," he said.
He added that some victims didn't know where to report, others felt shy, while some of them refrained from reporting because the perpetrators were family members.
Mr Mdolwa affirmed that sexual violence was among serious cases reported almost every day at the desk, followed by physical and economic ones.
Ilala Regional Police Commander (RPC), Zuberi Chembela, who represented the Dar es Salaam Special Zone Commander, Lazaro Mambosasa said that traditional dances, famously known as "ngoma and kigodoro' have been spinning GBV cases, especially in the highly populated areas including Buguruni, Ukonga, Chanika, Majohe and Pugu.
Worse still, people in all those areas have been taking GBV cases as simple issues, which are to be friendly solved, said the RPC.
"The Police Force and other departments have been encouraging regular public education campaigns in various approaches.
We are sure that people are now aware of the matter because they keep on visiting our stations to report the cases," he said.
The RPC seconded the Social Welfare Officer's statement that most of the GBV victims are women and children, but men do also experience the situation, though rarely reported.