Together, We Can End GBV, Child Abuse – UN Envoy

The Special Representative of the UN Secretary General on Sexual Violence in Conflict, Zainab Bangura, said that the world can end Gender Based Violence and child abuse if countries adopted a multi-sectorial approach, including south-south cooperation.

Nafissa with a volunteer and an employee of Intersos’s support centre for gender-based violence
Nafissa with a volunteer and an employee of Intersos’s support centre for gender-based violence

She made the remarks, yesterday, while visiting Isange-One-Stop Centre at Kacyiru, Kigali, where she was accompanied by the UN Women Country Representative Fatou-Lo.

Bangura noted that Rwanda’s approach to fighting GBV and child abuse is “inspiring” and that more countries need to learn and adopt the Isange model.

“Ever since I joined this office, I always campaigned for a model similar to Isange, which is a victim-centred approach and this is why this centre is very inspiring… the logic behind such a facility is that it provides support to the victim as well as collect evidence to be presented in courts of law,” said Bangura.

Bangura went on to detail how ending GBV and child abuse is possible saying that the world needs a turning point whereby “everyone should feel bothered and concerned” with the issue of GBV and child abuse.

“We need a multi-dimensional approach to end GBV and this includes having the commitment and the will to end it, increasing awareness, breaking the silence and exploiting south-south cooperation – that way, there is no doubt we can end this vice,” she said.

Commissioner of Police Daniel Nyamwasa, the Director of Kigali Forensic Laboratory, who received the visiting officials, noted that part of the work that IOSC does requires DNA tests to secure evidence to support the judicial process.

“Effective January 2017, we will be doing the tests from our forensic laboratory which will improve on the services we provide at Isange,” CP Nyamwasa said.

Supt. Shafiga Murebwayire, the coordinator of Isange, expounded on the idea behind the creation of Isange, the services it offers and its impact in fighting and preventing gender based violence, child abuse and ensuring fair justice system.

Isange was created in July 2009 as a multi-sectorial and interdisciplinary programme aimed at providing free-of-charge psychosocial, medical, police and legal services to victims of GBV and child abuse.

Isange also has provisions for emergency contraception, HIV prophylaxis, STI prevention, and other medications.


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