Violence against women has been a problem all too often ignored, covered up and swept under the rug despite efforts made in the past to bring the issue to public attention. Addressing violence against women remains a burden and an unfinished agenda, The Monitor Staff Writer Pini Bothoko observes
The recent killing of a 24-year-old woman of Sesung village, her body found naked in the bush at Unit 2 location in Jwaneng mining town, has left an indelible impression that we indeed live in a patriarchal society.
A passerby, who was walking along the streets on Unit 2 location, discovered the woman’s body early in the morning of the last leg of the popular annual 1000km Desert Race Competition that was held in Jwaneng.
Months ago, the police also discovered another woman’s half-naked body dumped in a dense bush at Ledumadumane location in Mogoditshane, who was also suspected to have been raped. The police recently raised concern over the escalating rape cases pointing to having recorded a countrywide increase in such cases.
Because of this upward trend, they are calling for joint intervention of all stakeholders. Everyone has the right to live their lives freely, but that seems not to be the case for women anymore, as they live in deep fear of rapists. Sick misogynistic views and unparalleled idiocy is so telling of how females are reduced to mere objects that the opposite sex thinks it has the right to use at will.
It seems like life in a patriarchal society fails to recognise the damage caused by male power, control and influence over females. Also, a lot of the thinking suggests that the blame is placed on the deceased 24-year-old for having gone out for entertainment when following people’s comments on this matter.
It was most hurtful and to an extent disgusting to read comments, including some from the womenfolk on Facebook blaming the young woman for her fatal fate, stating that she somehow deserved what came to her.
Some people, mostly men, speculated that she might have gone there without cash to entertain herself, accusing women of having the habit of relying on strangers for their own entertainment.
Every year statistics of Gender-Based Violence (GBV) escalate with women remaining the most affected.
One might say this trend is worrisome and should be dealt with before it becomes entrenched in younger generations.
Shortly after the woman’s body was discovered, disturbing images of her naked body with her legs spread open circulated on various media platforms. However, some people condemned the hedonistic indulgence of one’s misfortune calling for immediate action in
Some members of the public think the time is now for the nation to act firmly to put a stop on abuse against women, with the country’s leadership and gender advocacy organisations releasing statements condemning the act.
The Minister of Nationality, Immigration and Gender Affairs, Dorcas Makgato through her Facebook page condemned what happened, stating to have been troubled by members of the public who circulated the woman’s naked pictures on social media.
“What went wrong Batswana? What have we become? I’m so distraught to the core. I’m still in disbelief and utter shock. It was bad enough that a young innocent person was violated and murdered mercilessly.
“How on earth do we find it ok to share pictures of a naked lifeless body? What went wrong Batswana betsho? Setho sa rona se kae? What kind of a nation are we becoming?
“Betsho, let’s stand together and condemn this heinous act of violence against the girl-child. Let’s unite and say NO to violence. Enough is enough. Let’s all unite in prayer and ask for the divine intervention of the Holy Spirit. This can’t go on betsho,” Makgato said. Sharing the same sentiments on his Facebook page reacting on the woman’s murder, human rights lawyer, Uyapo Ndadi said the violence that women and girls face is alarming, calling for the nation’s views on what could be done to respond to the predicament.
Ndadi called on fathers to play a big part in instilling good values in their sons, stating that he also thinks that the virus of runaway fathers is also a factor.
Mmegi Sports journalist, Calistus Kolantsho through his Facebook page called for a match against what transpired. He pleaded with members of the public to stop pointing fingers at each other and react collectively to curb women abuse.
“Let’s come up with a walk against abuse, the biggest walk this country has ever seen. Let’s mobilise everybody who is against any form of abuse,” he said, calling for those supporting the idea to comment with #NotInMyName.
The post attracted hundreds of followers who are currently discussing how best to fight violence against women. Meanwhile, the police recently arrested four suspects in connection to the woman’s murder and they are currently in custody.