National 16 Days of Activism against GBV launched amid concerns of increased cases in Zimbabwe: Calls made for resources’ mobilisation to deal with scourge

THE National 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence (GBV) was on Sunday launched amid calls for advocacy to mobilize more national budgets for investments in preventing violence against women and girls.

The launch in Hauna, Manicaland province sadly came as concerns of continued increased gender-based violence (GBV) in Zimbabwe grew over the years with several issues, including poverty and disease outbreak fueling it.

Edward Kallon, UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Zimbabwe in a statement urged governments to allocate more resources to prevention services for gender-based violence to reduce the tremendous health, legal, and productivity costs that countries continue to bear due to the scourge.

“I am honoured to join you today for the national launch of the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence. This year’s campaign carries the theme “UNITE! Invest to prevent violence against women and girls,” urging governments and stakeholders worldwide to invest in preventing gender-based violence.

“Urgent financial support is necessary to tackle these issues, strengthening international cooperation, monitoring budget allocations, implementing gender-responsive budgeting, and providing resources to women’s rights organizations’ are crucial for lasting, transformative changes for women and girls.

Kallon highlighted that as the theme of the 16 days aptly emphasized, financing or investment was a critical element in achieving gender equality (SDG5) and the rest of the SDGs.

“A substantial increase in finance flows is necessary.

“This entails engaging international financial institutions, multilateral development banks, the private sector, remittances, philanthropic foundations, and other sources.

“By embracing an integrated approach, harnessing technology, and innovation, mobilizing financing, and strengthening collaboration and coordination, we can pave the way for gender equality,” said the UN Coordinator.

According to him, it was sad to note that violence against women and girls remained a widespread human rights violation despite the existence of laws to combat such violence, enforcement challenges and discriminatory social norms continue to persist.

“Startling statistics reveal that approximately one in three women and girls experience gender-based violence, inhibiting their potential and contribution to their countries’ development.

“It is time we acknowledge that any form of violence against women and girls is a stain on our humanity and hampers peace, security, and sustainable development. Let us unite to combat all forms of violence and address their underlying causes.

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