GBV survivor launches anti-crime campaign

17 Dec 2018 17:20pm
WINDHOEK, 17 DEC (NAMPA) – Gender-based violence (GBV) survivor and single mother, Emmarencia van Wyk launched the ‘Make A Noise’ community safety and crime prevention initiative here on Friday as a response to increasing incidents of violence in Namibia.
The initiative makes use of preventative methods, educational materials and physical safety tools and technologies in order to combat violence in communities with special attention to GBV.
One such technology is the personal safety alarm, which is a small portable device with a cord that when pulled detaches from the device and emits a loud and powerful 140 decibel sound, equivalent to that of a jet engine aircraft at takeoff.
Van Wyk said during the launch the device is designed to deter potential criminals by drawing attention to the victim before a crime is committed and potentially saving the lives of victims of GBV.
Van Wyk also shared her own experience as a GBV survivor and stated that when a person has experienced such violence, some part of them dies, hence the campaign aims to prevent this from happening through educational programmes and physical tools.
The alarm is sold for N.dollars 175 at all Engen fuel stations countrywide.
She further urged citizens and corporations to invest in the initiative in order to make the safety tools available to all women, children and the most vulnerable in communities.
Speaking at the same event, Technical Advisor to the Office of the First Lady Veronica Theron stated that GBV should be treated as an epidemic with the same effort and resources as the HIV response, adding it is a manifestation of violence in Namibia, therefore should not be treated in isolation.
The campaign comes amid continuing reports of GBV incidents mostly involving domestic violence and intimate-partner homicides or murder-suicides in the country.
Last week, Benjamin Hishikomesho Shivute, 46, fatally shot his wife Annastasia Shivute, 33, and took his own life at a neighbour’s house during a quarrel.
It was the second incident of a murder-suicide of a couple that week following an incident in which a 48-year-old man brutally attacked and murdered his 27-year-old girlfriend and then shot himself.