Declare a state of emergency on escalating GBV: NCWC

17 Feb 2014 16:10pm
WINDHOEK, 17 FEB (NAMPA) – The National Council Women’s Caucus (NCWC) is urging President Hifikepunye Pohamba to declare a state of emergency on gender-based violence (GBV) in the country.
A state of emergency is a governmental declaration which announces that the country is in a state of emergency.
This means that the government can suspend and/or change some functions of the executive, the legislative and/or the judiciary during this period of time. It alerts citizens to change their normal behaviour, and orders Government agencies to implement emergency plans.
NCWC chairperson Margreth Mensah-Williams said during a media conference just after the National Council resumed sittings here on Monday that a state of emergency was declared on drought, and it worked.
Thus, one should also be declared for the escalating GBV.
“One cannot understand why the Republic of Namibia has become a nation of violence. Why have we become a non-caring and non-loving nation?” she asked.
Mensah-Williams said a lot of information to stop GBV is given on a daily basis, but yet, no change is happening.
One of the resolutions taken at the recent ‘Second Rural Women’s Parliament with Male Partners’ was for the Namibian nation to go on its ‘knees’ and pray against GBV.
“The Women’s Caucus agreed to organise a mass prayer campaign in the future, where all women in Namibia, young and old, would pray for a specific time,” Mensah-Williams indicated.
All churches will also be requested to hold prayer sessions on a specific Sunday for the whole nation to be in unison in their prayers.
The MP’s announcement follows the killing of yet another young woman.
The 28-year-old Helena Shivute was allegedly hacked to death with an axe by her boyfriend on the eve of Valentine’s Day.
Their five-year-old daughter witnessed the event at the Etilyasa village in the Otamanzi Constituency.
Shivute’s killing comes five days after Mirjam Nandjato was gruesomely beheaded by her boyfriend at Oshakati.
“Finally, I think we can all agree that the time for complacency is long gone, has passed and belongs to another era. The silence on violence against women and children has to be broken, and now,” said the politician.
In creating awareness about GBV, the National Council members will for the duration of this whole week wear purple ribbons.
The NCWC also called on all caring citizens - starting from the First Citizen of the country - to light a candle of hope, and pray for five minutes every Friday at 12h00 this whole year.
The gesture in memory of those who had lost their lives through GBV will start this Friday at exactly 12h00.