NAIROBI, Kenya Apr 10 – A new survey released by National Crime and Research Centre shows that cases of gender violence against men have increased in the last one year.
The report which targeted 819 respondents (656 female and 163 male) in 13 counties (Northeastern counties were not included) said current prevalence was 48.6 percent for men and 37.7 percent for women.
NCRC Principal Researcher Stephen Muteti says this is consistent with the common belief about increased vulnerability of men as reported in the media.
“More men than women reported GBV to be bodily harm inflicted by woman on man and psychological harm inflicted by woman on man. This reflects a gender bias in which women trivialize the experience of men and cultural change in which men admit being victimized by women,” he said during release of the report.
Kiambu, Busia, Vihiga, Mombasa counties are reported to have exhibited the highest rate of the gender violence against men.
The most common forms of gender violence mentioned by both male and female respondents were inflicting bodily harm (73.8 percent and 68.9 percent among and female and male), sexual assaults on women and children e.g. rape, digital finger etc (41.2 percent and 41.0 percent among female and male) and verbal abuse (36.5 percent and 34.8 percent).
Other forms of GBV identified by respondents include: economic deprivation/financial restrictions, psychological humiliation, early marriages for girls below 18 years of age, defilement, forced marriages, sexual deprivation and discrimination at work or by in-laws
Kilifi (97.9pc), Kisii (85.7 pc), Machakos (71.4 pc) Mombasa (66.7 pc) and Kisii (64.9 pc) ranked as the top five in prevalence of rape Samburu ranked lowest with 7.9% of cases reported.
Machakos (90.5 pc), Migori (86.6 pc), Meru (45.8 pc), Kisii (64.3 pc), and Busia (61.5 pc) ranked highest in domestic violence; Kilifi had the lowest (12.5 pc)
Cases of reporting were still found to be low. Only 15.2percent and 16.7 of male respondents who had ever been sexually violated had reported or had someone else report the act of sexual violence.
The report found most victims had reported to the police and provincial administration but cites their understanding of GBV being inadequate.
Muteti said there is also need for the health providers who are usually the first point of call for the GBV victims to create awareness after it emerged that only 10 percent of women and 6.8 percent of men reported to have ever been asked at a health facility of any GBV physical or sexual experience they might have encountered.
The report further recommends establishment of the gender based violence desks at criminal justice institutions to deter cases of victims and witnesses being threatened.
“More men (56.7percent) than women (32.4 percent) reported to the police confirming the general assumption that women are intimidated when reporting GBV,” the report noted.