By Julius Mugaga Tukacungurwa/Umoja Standard.
Kiryandongo, Uganda: Ms. Moureen Wagubi Executive Director of Institute for Social Transformation- an NGO rooted in women rights stated that South Sudan Refugees in Kiryandongo should come out boldly and speak out on any kind violence in their community if the fight is to count.
Ms. Wagubi said that most of this is subjected to women which necessitates bringing men on board to be sensitized since they are the most perpetuators of the vice.
South Sudan Refugees in Kiryandongo being facilitated on Domestic and Gender-Based Violence by a facilitator from Institute for Social Transfromation on 9thth/December, 2022. Photo by Julius Mugaga Tukacungurwa.
“We cannot fight violence when we are engaging only women, we have to bring the men on table because as we know, men are the majority perpetrators of violence in communities”. Ms. Wagubi.
“This will help them to draw the actions that they are going to take forward to fight this vice because we assume that men know but some don’t know so this will help them to appreciate each other’s role”. She added.
She made this revelation during community dialogues as part of 16 Days of Activism spearheaded by Action Against Hunger USA-Uganda Mission in Kiryandongo Refugee Settlement.
During the engagement, community members especially single mothers revealed that they try to use land donated to them but some opportunistic men grab it hence rendering them landless.
Ms. Moureen Wagubi- Executive Director of Institute for Social Transformation (IST) speaking to South Sudan Refugees in Kiryandioongo on 9thth/December, 2022. Photo by Julius Mugaga Tukacungurwa.
It is against this background that she implored CSOs and implementing partners to have synergized efforts to ensure refugees have equitable land use to solve food security in their homesteads.
“How do we bring in action learning system that will help equal share on land between couples which in the end will restore harmonious living”. Said Ms. Wagubi.
However, Emmanuel Ruben Datiro the Refugee Welfare Council Chairperson (RWCC) for Kiryandongo told this website that some community members fear to come out to report such violations from men/women hence increasing the pain on to them silently.
He asked them to always report such cases as and when they occur for them to get required help from relevant authorities.
Emmanuel Ruben Datiro the Refugee Welfare Council Chairperson (RWCC) for Kiryandongo speaks to media after community dialogue with Refugees as part of #16DaysofActivism2022. Photo by Julius Mugaga Tukacungurwa.
“Cultural believes is a big problem here as most of the violations are culturally acceptable for example in some of the communities here, beating up wives is seen as a usual thing yet at the end of the day, it inflicts pain and physical harm to a victim”. Rev. Emmanuel.
“There is therefore a need to sensitize both men and women on such kind of acts and breaking some of the negative cultural beliefs like this” He added.
Speaking after the engagement, Mariam Akiror- the Advocacy and Communications Coordinator at Action Against Hunger USA-Uganda Mission cited that poverty, early child marriage, teenage pregnancy, alcoholism are the key contributors of Domestic and Gender Based Violence.
Mariam Akiror- the Advocacy and Communications Coordinator at Action Against Hunger USA-Uganda Mission speaks at a community dialogue with Refugees as part of #16DaysofActivism2022 in Kiryandongo Refugee Settlement. Photo by Julius Mugaga Tukacungurwa.
She implored communities within the settlement to have mutual understanding in usage of resources and other affairs of the family especially for couples as this will be the first right step in bringing down the vice.
She informed that there are different forms of domestic violence that range from economical, physical, psychological, cultural, spiritual and others and it is against this background that she implored communities in clusters L, N, C and others to positively divert from such.
Mariam mentioned that Action against hunger decided to partner with Institute for Social Transformation and SEATINI Uganda in order to cascade this message to impact refugee and host community living conditions.
Before, Kapule Rose Kapule a mother of 3, refugee from South Sudan had earlier narrated how she is facing had time from her husband with whom they separated for battering her and continues to intimidate her.
Kapule says after the separation, her land was grabbed from her by some people because she’s a single mother and is now left homeless with not dignity in the community.
In year 2021, 17533 cases of domestic violence were reported countrywide with Kiryandongo said to have registered the highest number of cases of Domestic violence in the same year followed by Kyotera District, Omoro and Amolatar among others.