NAIROBI,The National Gender and Equality Commission (NGEC) of Kenya has warned that gender-based violence (GBV) is on the rise in the country.

NGEC Chairperson Winfred Lichuma said in a statement here Friday that GBV was “a grave consequence” with far reaching implications. Lichuma said GBV survivors were at high risk of severe and long-lasting health problems, which could be physical or psychological in nature.

“The time has come when all duty-bearers need to be proactive in preventing and responding to the vice through reliable public services and rights awareness,” she said.

“Society must also play its role by taking a firm stand against all forms of gender based violence and ensuring such cases are reported to the law enforcement agencies immediately they occur for appropriate action.”

Referring to a case of an attack on 32-year old Fatuma Ibrahim who was airlifted Thursday from Wajir County to Nairobi for treatment after a vicious attack by her husband, Lichuma said the alleged actions not only amounted to “domestic violence” as provided in the Protection Against Domestic Violence (PADV) Act, 2015 but also would constitute several offences under the law including “wounding” “causing grievous harm” or even “attempted murder” with a penalty of up to life imprisonment.

Lichuma called on the Director of Public Prosecutions to commence urgent investigations on the matter and prefer appropriate charges against the perpetrator for justice to prevail.

She said under the PADV Act, Fatuma Ibrahim required protection from the husband as well as compensation. “We therefore advise her to seek protection orders as soon as she recuperates as well as consider filing a claim for compensation against the husband for the injuries sustained as a result of the attack,” said Lichuma in the statement.

Meanwhile, doctors at Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH) managed to successfully remove a knife which had lodged in Fatuma’s cheek.

Fatuma sustained multiple stab wounds in the abdomen, legs, the chest and the right side of her face.

Fatuma’s husband, Mohamed Wamorje Deeq, appeared before the Wajir Magistrate’s Court Friday morning and was remanded at the Wajir police station for another 14 days.

His case will come up for mention on Jan 13, 2016.

Source: KBC