Policemen in Drive to End Gender Based Violence

3325 Views Kampala, Uganda

In short
In the campaign dubbed Walk a Mile in Her Shoes, male officers donned womens clothing, shoes and carried handbags in a journey that started at the Railway grounds through the streets of Kampala to Simbamannyo building- the headquarters of the Ministry of Gender.

Ugandan police officers today joined activists on the streets of Kampala in a march intended to campaign against Rape, Sexual Assault and Gender Based Violence.

In the campaign dubbed "Walk a Mile in Her Shoes," male officers donned women's clothing, shoes and carried handbags in a journey that started at the Railway grounds through the streets of Kampala to Simbamannyo building- the headquarters of the Ministry of Gender.

The activity was intended to highlight causes, effects and remediation to sexualized violence against women and the troubles women go through by virtue of their gender.  It os part of the 16 days of activism against Gender Base Violence.

Several policemen who were at the forefront of the campaign said the experience was fun but hectic stating that walking the mile in women's shoes changed their perception about womanhood.

Mahamya Modaias, a tourist policeman, who was part of the campaign today, said Gender Based Violence still persists because of men who look at women as subordinates. He adds that the evil can be eliminated by treating women as equals in rights and dignity.
 
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Lukwago John, another Policeman says that his participation was to represent men who want to make better families. He called fort tolerance from either side adding that the burden of womanhood is rather too much.
 
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Another participant Alex Kikayi blames social evils related to Gender Based Violence on unfaithful partners in relationships and marriages.  He says support and persistence from either side change the story.
 
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Hodan Addou, the United Nations country representative to Uganda says men are duty bound to show that they are not only listening but taking the required action in communities to end Gender Based Violence.  He adds that although everyone has a role to play in ending Gender Based Violence, men hold the key to the goal.
 
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Gender Minister Janat Balunzi Mukwaya said Uganda is working towards delivering women from all forms of violence. Mukwaya also called on the police to take keen interest at the high rates of gender based violence in Moyo district and some parts of Northern Uganda.

 

About the author

Alex Otto
“Journalism that changes lives is my goal,” Alex Otto has said on more than one occasion. That is his career’s guiding principle. Has been since he was a radio journalist in the northern Ugandan town of Gulu in 2009.

Otto passionately believes his journalism should bring to the fore the voices of the voiceless like the shooting victims of Apaa. Otto tries in his journalism to ask tough questions to those in positions of authority.

Based in the Kampala bureau, Otto is especially interested in covering agriculture, politics, education, human rights, crime, environment and business. He has reported intensively on the post-conflict situation in northern Uganda.

A URN staff member since 2014, Otto previously worked with The Observer Newspaper from 2012 to 2013 and later the Institute for War and Peace Reporting IWPR based in Gulu.

He was the URN Gulu bureau chief 2014-2016.