16 Sobering Kenyan Domestic Violence Statistics
Domestic violence is defined as “the willful intimidation, physical assault, battery, sexual assault, and/or other abusive behavior as part of a systematic pattern of power and control perpetrated by one intimate partner against another. It includes physical violence, sexual violence, psychological violence, and emotional abuse.”
Domestic violence carries many faces, some of them obvious, others subtle and secret.
However, it’s one serious tragedy that occurs more often than you think.
Indeed, the rates of domestic violence in Kenya are alarmingly high.
Even more worrying are the statistics of survivors of domestic violence who didn’t report such cases.
They opted either to ignore the threat because they didn’t have money to pursue legal redress, didn’t think the action was that serious, didn’t know they could report that incident, or because they thought things would improve.
As a result, many hospitals have ended up treating women and children who have suffered one form of domestic abuse.
The most common injuries are in order:
- Second Degree Burns
- Third degree burns
- Hot water scalding
- Broken bones
- Bruised body parts (bleeding nose, bruised thighs, arms, scratched face)
- Sexual abuse
Kenya is not alone in this damning assessment of violence.
According to the International Justice Mission, it is estimated that 1 in 5 women will be a victim of rape or attempted rape in her lifetime.
IJM further states that violence is the biggest threat for millions of the poorest people in the world.
42% Of Kenyans Affected By Domestic Violence
The Daily Nation published the story behind the Esther Kisaghu’s vision.
The Founder of Rose Foundation and survivor of domestic violence, Esther organized a walk from Mombasa to Nairobi because “…statistics indicate that 42 percent of Kenyans have been affected by domestic violence…”
Music teacher, Ian, and his counterpart, Thomas, a writer, were flagged off by Anglican Bishop, Julius Kalu, in Mombasa on February 21, arriving in Nairobi on March 12, where they were received by the Chief Justice, Dr Willy Mutunga.
They had spent a grueling 21 days on the road, and worn out two pairs of shoes each. Credit Daily Nation. Wednesday, March 16, 2016
Domestic violence is therefore a very real threat in the Kenyan household.
The after-effects of violence extend beyond the physical act to influencing one’s economic status, emotional and mental status.
In other words, domestic violence is a very expensive affair.
It robs us of our dignity, our productivity, our life goals and ability to live well balanced lives in society.
This is why it must be stopped by all means.
But, how exactly would you stop a practice like this?
Creating Awareness About The Protection Against Domestic Violence Act
Firstly, there is need to create awareness about laws like the ‘Protection Against Domestic Violence’ Act.
This Act is incredibly valuable to you if you or someone you know has experienced any of these offenses:
- Abuse that includes- child marriage; female genital mutilation; forced marriage; forced wife inheritance; interference from in-laws; sexual violence within marriage; virginity testing; and widow cleansing;
- Damage to property;
- Depriving the applicant of or hindering the applicant from access to or a reasonable share of the facilities associated with the applicant’s place of residence;
- Economic abuse;
- Emotional or psychological abuse;
- Forcible entry into the applicant’s residence where the parties do not share the same residence;
- Physical abuse;
- Sexual abuse;
- Verbal abuse; or
- Any other conduct against a person, where such conduct harms or may cause imminent harm to the safety, health, or well-being of the person
Many of the victims of domestic violence don’t even know that most of these offenses listed above are crimes punishable in the court.
Unaware of their rights, they become the silent sufferers, hoping against hope that the actions will end in due course.
Some of them live to tell another story when they check into hospital with gruesome stories of what they have endured in the hands of their perpetrators.
If you know anyone that is a victim of any of the above behaviors, contact Ripples International for further counsel.
Why Zero Violence254 Initiative Exists
This sobering reality is the pivotal reason why the Zero Violence254 initiative has been birthed.
The vision behind the Initiative is to create awareness of the ‘Protection Against Domestic Violence Act’ ensuring that victims of this heinous acts know their full rights in case there is a emergence of these acts again.
Moreover, perpetrators will no know they are not safe from the law. There are consequences to their actions.
With that said, let’s explore some of the domestic violence statistics that make the Zero Violence2 54 Initiative so necessary.
16 Sobering Kenyan Domestic Violence Statistics
1. According to the Kenya Domestic Household Survey (KDHS) 2014, 38 percent of women aged 15-49 reported physical violence.
2. 14% of women aged 15-49 reported physical violence reported having experienced sexual violence.
3. In 2013, the Kenya Police Service received 3,596 defilement cases; 913 cases of rape; 242 cases of incest and 124 cases of sodomy.
4. 5,143 cases of GBV come from 131 regions across Kenya.
5. Girls aged between 12-17 represent 41 percent of survivors followed by women aged 18-49 who make up 32 percent.
6. 1% of girls living with disabilities have suffered in the hands of perpetrators of GBV.
7. 3% of women over 50 years have been affected by GBV.
8. However, it was girls below 11 years who shockingly accounted for 24 percent of GBV survivors.
9. One of the worst cases of defilement was of a 10-year-old girl who went on to give birth in Kericho County through Caesarean Section. The girl suffered double tragedy when media contravened the Children’s Act by revealing her identity, school and image leading to psychological torture, stigma and depression.
10. As far as the worst regions as far as physical violence against women is concerned are Western and Nyanza accounting for 51.6% and 49.5% respectively, followed closely by Nairobi (46.1%) and Eastern (40.6%). Others are Central (32.8%), Rift Valley (32.4%), Coast (27.4%) and the lowest is North Eastern (12.1%).
11. With regards to sexual violence against women, records indicate that Western and Nyanza are leading at 25.3 and 19.4%.
12. Nairobi comes in between the two former provinces at 21.8% of the cases reported nationally.
13. Others were Eastern (12.9), Rift Valley (9.7), Coast 9.1), Central (8.7), and North Eastern (0.4 per cent).
14. According to the Access to Justice Report conducted by UN Women in 2015, 72.6 percent of survivors were unwilling to pursue justice; while only 5% of the survivors seen in facilities in 2014 were willing to go to court owing to insensitivity of law enforcers.
15. High Illiteracy Levels prevent Active Victim Protection. Reports indicate notes that the victim protection system is weak and worsened by high levels of legal illiteracy in the country, especially among GBV survivors.
16. The rise In GBV Cases related to lack of enforcement. As far as the legal framework was concerned, there are eight laws that address GBV issues starting with the supreme law which is the Constitution of Kenya 2010.
Legal Frameworks In Place
Other legal frameworks include the
- Sexual Offences Act (2006);
- Employment Act (2007);
- Prohibition of FGM Act (2011);
- Counter Trafficking in Persons Act (2010);
- Protection Against Domestic Violence Act;
- Gazettement of Sexual Offences Medical Treatment Regulations and PRC Form;and the
- Victims Protection Act.
Statistics provided by Kenyan Woman
Your Next Step
Now, that you know, what do you do?
There are a couple of things.
1. First, you can tell your friends about the Zero Violence254 initiative.
3. Download your free copy of the Protection Against Domestic Violence Act and share with a friend.
4. Contact Ripples International to get more information about procedures for dealing with domestic violence.