Victims of sexual violence against women in Somalia deserve justice

Read Time:3 Minute, 52 Second

Since the heinous crime against Faiza took place in Bosaso and the perpetrator was a Puntland police officer, I have written to Puntland authorities, including the Minister of Heath and Minister of Women Development and Family Affairs, to find out more about the facts surrounding this tragic incident.

Although I did not receive any response from them, I asked Puntland authorities three questions:

Why haven’t Puntland authority taken the lead in assisting the medical care of the rape victim and  her family? Second, why has Puntland President, Dr Abdiweli Ali, failed to reach out to the family or pay a visit to give comfort to the girl while she was still in Mogadishu hospital?

I believe his visit or phone call would have shown that he cares about rape victims and is opposed to sexual violence against women and girls.

Some people are alleging that the officer had received assistance from some members of the Puntland police to avoid arrest and to escape to Kismayu, southern Somalia, because of clannism.

Up to now, why have not the perpetrator of the crime and those who aided his escape face justice?

I wish I would not have to cover this tragic story, but someone has to write about the perpetual violence against our women and girls. It is taking place in our households, villages, towns, cities, and work places.

We must not condone or tolerate violence against our women and girls. We should not harbor or give aid to those who perpetrate these heinous crimes. We should take a personal pledge in the name of our creator not to allow violence against women and girls. And we should be the protectors of our mothers, sisters, daughters and nieces because they face violence on a daily basis.

Somali men, we should not be complicit or silent about violence against women and girls. For example, Faiza could have been your daughter, granddaughter or sister. We must take action against violence against women and girls. We must also hold accountable law enforcement officials and politicians to save more victims from sexual violence.

Somali women and girls, if they say no it means no, period. And, we must not take advantage of their economic disadvantage or those from marginalized communities.

Furthermore, Puntland authorities have a responsibility to bring justice to the officer who shot Faiza in a vital part of her body “pelvic area”. This officer is a thug who does not deserve to run from the law.

But, So far, the officer has not been charged any crime or arraigned in a court. Faiza and her family are worried about whether they will ever get a fair trial from Puntland’s underfunded and broken court system.

A lesson from the sexual violence against Faiza: leadership matters.

Mogadishu mayor’s efforts in helping victims of violence against women and girls show leadership. Because of his involvement, although it will take years, Faiza has a better chance of recovering from that ordeal in Bosaso. And, I want to thank Thabit for his efforts.

Finally, the Somali and international communities are expecting from Puntland leadership to take action against violence against women and girls and to hold the offender of the heinous crime accountable and deliver justice to Faiza and her family.

While in her hospital bed in Turkey, Faiza said, “All I want from the Puntland administration is justice.”

Ali Mohamed is the Founder and Editor Gubanmedia.com. He can be reached at aliadm18@gmail.com

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A warsame

Published by A Warsame is senior Editor and managing Director of Mareeg Media Whatup :+447737886245
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