Incidents of rape and sodomy from January to March last year have increased from 1,585 to 1,765 during the same period this year, according to the Legal and Human Rights Centre (LHRC).
Quoting police sources, Executive Director of LHRC, Dr Helen Kijo-Bisimba, said the statistics have been obtained through gender desks established in all police stations. She disclosed the figures in Dar es Salaam yesterday during a visit to the Kurasini National Orphanage in Temeke municipality as a part of marking the centre’s 21st anniversary since its inception in 1995.
“Incidents of male children being sodomized are increasing. Police statistics show that from January to July, this year, about 2,571 male and female children are reported to have been raped and sodomized,” she said.
Quoting a police spokesperson, Dr Bisimba said the figures could be higher as some victims do not report cases of rape and sodomy to police stations. The police report says 1,203 cases are still under investigation while 822 cases are in court.
A total of 234 have sentenced to various jail terms. Quoting a research conducted by the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in collaboration with the government, shows that four out of ten children (boys and girls) have been sodomized or raped more than three times.
The figures show that 49 percent of children rights violations happen at home while 23 per cent take place when children go to school or home. Dr Bisimba said factors that contribute to street children include early marriages, teenage pregnancies and family misunderstandings. She appealed to the public to build a culture of respect, protect and preserve basic human rights of children.
The head of the Kurasini National Orphanage, Beatrice Lawrence, said that her centre with 75 children faces several challenges that include lack of funds and poor infrastructure.
“Recently we received 54 children who were living in hostile environment from various part of the city following an order by the Dar es Salaam Regional Commissioner (RC) Paul Makonda to remove all street children in the city.
Culled from Daily Times