Uganda is still registering high rates of gender sexual and gender based violence cases with those that make it to the courts of law standing at six out ten.
According to the chief justice Bart Katureebe, this is only a small figure of what exactly is at the grassroots. He notes that the greatest percent of victims of sexual violence never make it to the courts of law.
“A report has it that of 95% people in Uganda with a justice need, only 5% are able to reach the formal justice system in courts of law and of these only 2% have access to a lawyer. Now you can imagine where our women and children lie, ” Katureebe said.
“The question should be what can I add to the voice that is trying to address this problem of gender based violence in our society,” he added.
The US Ambassador to Uganda Deborah R Malac noted that the country’s numbers are still appalling when it comes to sexual violence something that frustrates the lives of most girls through diseases like HIV and unwanted pregnancies.
“Its absurd to note that only half of the children who suffer sexual violence have reported the abuse and less than 10% seek health or any form of support because most times the perpetrators are well known to the victim and their family.”
She added that with one out of every three girls experiencing sexual violence at a tender age, there is need for governments efforts to be diversified to address the
Women in leadership from cross the country came together to deliberate on how they can address sexual gender based violence on the girl child in Uganda and how justice should administered.
While officiating at the same, first lady Janet Museveni noted that government has invested in education and legal structures to empower the girl child to be self-resilience in the face of sexual gender based violence. She however added that policies alone are not enough.
“The women in leadership here can testify that education has been a great tool in their journey of empowerment. The educated child can be empowered to differentiate between what’s right and wrong, and not to engage in risky sexual activity and to contribute to the common good,” she said.
The women in leadership alongside other stakeholders in the justice system were meeting in their second conference to deliberate on how best the marginalised women in community who suffer sexual and gender based violence can be helped and their perpetrators be reprimanded.