The Director of Kigali Forensic Laboratory, Commissioner of Police (CP) Daniel Nyamwasa, has told residents of Kinyinya Sector in Gasabo District that one of the most appropriate means to mitigate and ultimately eliminate cases of domestic violence and child abuse is through sharing information with security organs and local leaders.
He made the remarks on September 6 in a campaign against GBV and child abuse that drew thousands of Kinyinya residents.
Gasabo, according to Police statistics, tops other districts in the City of Kigali with high cases of domestic violence.
“Child abuse and domestic violence can manifest in different forms including physical, sexual, psychological, economic harm or suffering of a spouse or a child; it is characterized by threats of such acts, arbitrary deprivation of liberty and can occur in public or in privacy,” said CP Nyamwasa.
“You don’t have to wait for any domestic misunderstanding erupt into violence; if you ignore such a situation, then know that such violence will eventually spill over to your home as well,” he added.
He reminded them that Isange One Stop Centre was established to handle such cases at no cost, which they should exploit.
The centre, which has since been scaled up to other 28 district hospitals across the country offers free medical, psycho-socio, legal and counseling services to the victims of GBV and Child Abuse.
During the meeting, residents who had concerns related to domestic violence filed them with the Isange One Stop Center mobile clinic – a fully-fledged vehicle that offers all isange clinical services.
Prior to the community meeting, CP Nyamwasa met with local leaders in a brief meeting where he reminded them of their role in fighting GBV and child abuse, and urged them to continuously encourage residents to come out and report such cases.
Addressing residents, vice mayor Nyirabahire who co-chaired the meeting said: “When such violence is happening in your neighbourhood you should not ignore it … remember when it worsens, it’s likely to affect you as well. We can’t live in comfort when our neighbour’s homes are wrecked.”
She added: “The government has put in place several mechanisms to fight domestic violence and child abuse, besides RNP is doing a lot in ensuring that this vice is eliminated in our societies that’s why our partnership with the police is crucial if this scourge is to be eliminated.”
Supt. Shafiga Murebwayire, the director of Isange centre tutored residents on services offered by Isange and went on to enlighten them on the dangers of GBV to the family, society and the country at large.
“Most of the GBV cases we receive are related to drug abuse…if we want to eliminate the scourge we need to collaboratively tackle it from bottom. Also, parents need to keep close to their children, know their lifestyle and difficulties in their lives, that way they (children) will be prevented from falling victim of any violence or abuse,” she said.
Yesterday’s event was part of RNP’s continued campaign against domestic violence and child abuse, especially focusing on breaking silence and timely information sharing.