Stand together against abuse

2016-12-08 06:01
Ntombizodwa Weyitile, of Ilitha Labantu, Constable Sindisiwe Ngqele, coordinator for domestic violence and communication officer at Gugulethu Police Station, Buziwe Tyam, of Women’s Network at the police station and Pastor Mbulelo Skeme, during the event at Luyolo Hall, in Gugulethu, on Friday. PHOTO: Mbongiseni Maseko

Ntombizodwa Weyitile, of Ilitha Labantu, Constable Sindisiwe Ngqele, coordinator for domestic violence and communication officer at Gugulethu Police Station, Buziwe Tyam, of Women’s Network at the police station and Pastor Mbulelo Skeme, during the event at Luyolo Hall, in Gugulethu, on Friday. PHOTO: Mbongiseni Maseko

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On Friday, Gugulethu police, Ilitha Labantu, Gugulethu Youth Desk and the Trauma Centre commemorated the 16 Days of Activism for No Violence Against Women and Children at the Luyolo Community Hall.

The organisations started the proceedings with a march from the Bhongolethu Mall, distributing pamphlets and posters which encouraged victims of domestic violence to speak-out and educated residents about domestic violence.

Constable Sindisiwe Ngqele, who coordinates domestic violence cases and communication at the police station, encouraged residents to act if there is a resident who is a victim of abuse.

“Our problem as women is that we love our comfort zone. Do not shy away from standing up for women who are victims of abuse in your area.

Rise again regardless of how much the abuser suppressed you, because the solution is within you.

Where there is a problem, there is a solution too. We have noticed that the rate of domestic violence is on the rise in the area. We want to let residents know that we care for them as police.

Ntombizodwa Weyitile, of Ilitha Labantu, said parents should never forget that their children get badly affected each time they fight.

“Wounds of abuse are hard to heal as we cannot see them. You can be able to keep strong when you are abused, but what about your children?

Do not be selfish; think of how your children are taking the abuse.

Domestic violence is high in December and rape cases are high at this time of the year,” Weyitile said.

Sylvie Mbebe, from the Trauma Centre, said the event was important as it brings to light the effects of abuse.

“We believe that memories of abuse can haunt us for a long time. Women can also be abusive to their partners.

Events like this are very important and I hope that all us understand that,” she said.

Buziwe Tyam, of the Women’s Network at the Gugulethu police station, said it is worrying to see other victims of violent abuse coming back to the police station to withdraw cases they opened two days after it took place.

“It is painful to see the things that are happening in our society and you ask yourself why. There are females who still say ‘he beats me up because he loves me.’ There is no love like that, you are mistaken. Unfortunately there are also women who take advantage of their partners and abuse them. Let us break the silence and stop hiding abuse. Do not wait until you get killed in that relationship,” Tyam said.

Mike Mfengu, of Gugulethu Youth Desk, said their aim is to mend relationship between residents and police.

“It is painful to hear stories of grandmothers who get abused by their grandchildren. We will never know your problem if you do not speak out about it. It is us as residents who can bring out change in our communities,” Mfengu said.

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