- Over 190 cases registered in just-ended quarter
- Mayor remonstrates against persisting GBV nationwide
The Francistown City Council (FCC) is experiencing a sudden and rapid increase in child welfare cases in the midst of the scourge of gender-based violence that is persisting nationwide, the Mayor of Francistown, Godisang Radisigo, has said.
Addressing the ongoing full council session, the Mayor noted that in the just-ended quarter, the council registered 193 cases compared to less than 100 in the previous quarter.
Twenty-six of the cases involve children in conflict with the law, 12 are of children in need of protection, 132 cases are of child abuse while 23 are for various cases like attempted suicide, child maintenance, adoption, co-parenting, drug abuse, unlawful wounding and counselling.
Cause for concern
“The increasing numbers of these cases are a cause for concern and need intervention,” Radisigo stated.
He said these social ills start from the family and expand to the community at large, adding that it is therefore important to start reconstructing at home.
In addition, the Mayor said there is a need for multi-sectorial interventions whereby other key stakeholders are involved to come up with best strategies for handling children issues.
“Social interventions need to include concrete measures such as income support, material aid and institutional placement of victim,” he stated.
Manace of GBV
Equally worrisome is the menace of gender-based violence that persists across Botswana inspite of intensified efforts in the national response to the scourge.
“As a country, we need to unearth the foundational gender misconceptions and norms that drive abusers to act in such a way,” Radisigo asserted. “At a certain level, we condone it as a society and raise an outcry when someone loses their life.
“We speak out against GBV only if the perpetrator is someone we do not know; if it is close to home, we do not speak out. We are an ailing society and should find ways to uproot GBV.
“These perpetrators are our parents, our children and close relatives and friends but we speak of them as if they are creatures that exist far from us. Let us speak up and nip GBV in its earliest stages.”