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A silent killer is on the rise!

December 4, 2023      

Gender-based violence (GBV) poses a constant threat to women and girls in Uganda. According to national demographic data from 2020, a staggering 56% of married women aged 15-49 disclosed enduring physical and/or sexual violence from their husbands (Uganda Bureau of Statistics, 2021). Shockingly, more than one in three women (36%) reported instances of sexual violence, predominantly perpetrated by their partners, with 28% reporting recent victimization by sexual violence. The pervasive nature of child sexual abuse is evident, as 59% of women reported experiencing such abuse during their childhood. Furthermore, national data revealed that 33% of girls below 15 years old were coerced into their initial sexual encounter. Alarmingly, despite the prevalence of GBV, only a minority of affected women reported these incidents to the police.

Between 2016 and 2021, the Uganda Police Force’s crime reports documented a staggering 272,737 cases of GBV, which included 2,278 homicides attributed to intimate partners. Domestic violence cases accounted for 33% of the female homicide cases. Despite efforts involving community policing programs and public awareness campaigns, there has been no apparent reduction in the number of GBV cases over the span of six years.