Mobile Application To Fight Sexual Violence, A Battle Lost By Kenyan Authorities
In most Kenyan societies, sexual violence is being swept under the carpet to suppress ‘disgrace’ and ’embarrassment’ and as a result, leaving both male and female victims suffering under their assailant’s watch. For example, it is common for a police officer to mock the victim through statements that possibly blame the woman with questions like; “kwani ulifanyia nini mzee”(How did you wrong your husband) or “kwani ulikuwa umevaa nguo inakaa aje” (what kind of attire were you wearing).
This being the first encounterment with authorities meant to assist Kenyans, reporting these cases becomes senseless and little is done if anything. Survivors of Sexual Violence in Kenya in conjunction with Wangu Kanja foundation among other stakeholders are now pushing for use of a mobile application to report, record and act upon sexual violence cases.
The Mobile Application is intended to by-pass systemic and structural barriers to gathering and sharing information and evidence related to sexual violence that is particular to low-resourced environments. This application aims to create a database of information that will be analyzed to inform advocacy, enhance, coordinate and allow policy formulation that will allow for intervention.
“The dignity of the survivors is key and to have it restored requires that we increase awareness, removing barriers to reporting and at the same time ensure access to justice while providing comprehensive care and support to the victims and or survivors.”
In a nutshell, the mobile application under #MobileAppForSurvivors is looking to achieve the following;
- Capture case studies on sexual violence; its trends, prevalence, and statistics
- Document past, present and future cases of sexual violence
- Demonstrate the power that new technologies have to transcend obstacles such as distance, insecurity, bureaucracy, and illiteracy
- Stakeholders to provide support to survivors of sexual violence so that they can access justice in a timely manner.
As much as the mobile application is the closest to justice a victim can get, communities with the greatest need still lack means. This owing to cultural, social and financial barriers, to access mobile and internet technology. However, the movement is adamant that although not all cases will be catered for, it will be a step towards liberating sexual violence victims.