Stop the killings

22 February 2019 | Opinion

At the beginning of the week, news trickled in that a young man, aged 27, allegedly killed his two cousins and proceeded to raping his grandmother in Omusati Region.

The suspect was reportedly arrested on Saturday and appeared in the Outapi Magistrate's Court.

According to reports, the man beat up his two cousins to death with a mopane tree branch before raping and injuring his grandmother. Horrible!

This shocking incident was not the only one to have sent shockwaves across the country.

A mere 130 km away, a 27-year-old man, allegedly killed his student girlfriend after stabbing her 18 times with a knife. Helao Hamuteta, who was a third-year student at the Hifikepunye Pohamba University of Namibia campus, sadly became the latest victim of a fatal domestic attack. The violence against women is a dark stain on our reputation as a nation.

We need to agree that the fight against violence against women, and child abuse, cannot be left to law-enforcement agents only. It requires a collective responsibility to be eradicated from our society.

As a nation, we are, and rightly so, outraged and distressed by this worryingly prevalent trend.

This is even worse when people of meagre means are involved and affected. It is unimaginable that someone would turn against their own biological grandmother or blood relatives, considering that children are not spared the rod either.

While it is true that the problem of sexual and gender-based violence remains deeply entrenched and complex to deal with, there should be no excuse for inaction.

This patriarchal society that we live in is often propagated by an unprecedented level and unwillingness to speak out against negative or toxic masculine conduct.

Men in particular must stand up, speak out and act against high levels of violence against women.

We believe this can be a powerful catalyst for change and this can be part of many other well-articulated strategies aimed at supporting prevention efforts.

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