Headed by its chairman, Dr. Jean Nepomuscene Sindikubwabo alongside his deputy Gertrude Kazarwa, the commission was received and briefed by Commissioner of Police (CP) Daniel Nyamwasa, the Director of Kigali Forensic Laboratory.
In his briefing, CP Nyamwasa said that the centres, which offer free medical, psycho-socio and legal services to victims, are a voice especially to the disadvantaged, who would otherwise find it hard to get justice and acquire medical services.
“These centres have been established in all the 44 district hospitals across the country, and offer similar services. They have doctors, judicial police officers, social workers, psychologists, who all work together to ensure that the victim acquires all the services required under one roof,” CP Nyamwasa said.
“When victim comes, he or she is directed to the judicial officer, who assesses the condition and sends them to medical-legal personnel for scientific evidence and treatment. It’s the same medical report that facilitates the judicial process. The judicial officer also works with police stations in that district to ensure that victims are located and helped,” he added.
Since July 2009, Isange one stop centre at Kacyiru hospital has received over 16, 900 cases with majority 71 percent related to sexual abuse; domestic violence account for 29 percent.
According to statistics, about 81 percent of the total victims of sexual assault are aged below 18 years, those below five years account for 17 percent while male victims are 2 percent.
Overall, male victims of domestic violence account for 19 percent, with majority victims being women at 82 percent.
Between January and August this year, all the 44 Isange centres across the country have received a total of 3,378 cases with a quarter of them received at Isange Kacyiru.
Isange model also has provisions for emergency contraception, HIV prophylaxis, Sexual Transmission Infections (STI) prevention and other medications. It provides free referral and specialized services like medico-legal, gynecology and obstetrics, mental health, legal and investigation, psychosocial, safe room and social integration services to victims of GBV and child abuse.
It also has provisions for preventing pregnancies that might arise out of rape and defilement.
Isange is under the supervision of the ministries of Gender and Family Promotion, Health, and Rwanda National Police (RNP).
CP Nyamwasa also briefed them on future expansion plans and the decentralization of the centres down to all health centres across the country as means to effectively and efficiently reach out to victims and further raise awareness on preventive measures.
In an interview, Dr. Sindikubwabo hailed the impact of Isange and the role of RNP is raising awareness on preventing gender based violence and child abuse.
“When you analyze its responsibilities, you will find that the specific duty of the police is to receive and support victims of GBV and child abuse. These efforts need to be supported by everyone and all institutions because,” Dr. Sindikubwabo said.
“We found out that Isange has enough and qualified staff; the idea to expand the services of Isange to health centres will also be a big step to also respond to the high cases of child pregnancy, break silence and prevent under-age pregnancies,” he added.
Source: RNP News