Esther Wavinya Mwanthi-37 year old resident of Kalama Location, Machakos County living with disability. She was raped and murdered on Wednesday, 15th May 2019.  

Peninah Kaimenyi-25 year old resident of Mombasa County. According to witness accounts, she was killed by Likoni Police Station Deputy OCS Joab Omondi before he turned the gun on himself on the night of 18th April 2019.

MA (Not her real name)-15 year old pupil of Pala Primary School in Ndhiwa, Homa Bay County and daughter to Ms. Melvine Atieno. She was killed and dumped on a roadside by unknown people on the night of 14th February 2019 while on her way to buy food at Ndhiwa market.

Peninah Njoki-95 year old grandmother and resident of Raiyani village in Githunguri, Kiambu County. She was allegedly raped, murdered and her body doused in acid on Sunday 24th February 2019.

These are not just statistics. They are real people with families and lives that they were enjoying before they met their end. Between 1st January 2019 and 2nd May 2019, more than 45 women were killed in Kenya. This is public information as published by various media platforms. Definitely, the numbers are higher if we factor in the cases that haven’t yet been reported by the media. How did we lose our way as a society? When did we lose our respect for the sanctity of life of the carriers of life, nurturers of our young and creators of beauty in our society? We should come to our senses and begin to respect women.

The cost of gender-based violence to our nation is huge. The social cost is high since high levels of mistrust will arise and ruin any attempt at ensuring harmonious existence in society between both genders. The Kenyan legal justice system will be crowded with cases that could have been avoided if only we respected the right to life of women. The economic impact of gender-based violence (GBV) is also high. According to a 2016 report (Gender Based Violence in Kenya: The Cost of Providing Services. A Projection Based on Selected Service Delivery Points) by the National Gender and Equality Commission (NGEC), the average cost of provision of gender-based violence services in sampled hospitals Is Ksh. 44,717. This is besides the time spent seeking justice and social stigma that is often attached to gender-based violence.

As right-thinking members of society, we need to respect the women in our midst and protect their right to life. The legal justice system should hand stiff sentences to perpetrators of gender-based violence that will act as deterrence to anybody thinking of committing such heinous acts. In our own small ways, we can help prevent gender-based violence. At Action for Children in Conflict (AfCiC), we believe that we are the change we seek to make. We are committed to combating gender-based violence in all its forms. You can reach out to us via phone number +254722753137 or +254799461757 if you encounter gender-based violence. We are always ready to lend a hand.

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