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Sunday, October 1, 2023

CPA says rising cases of rape alarming

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By Alagie Manneh

The Child Protection Alliance said yesterday that it is alarmed by the number of sexual assault cases in The Gambia, days after a report revealed that the country registered a staggering 117 rape cases this year alone. 

The report also said most of the victims are very young children.

The report, issued by the Gender Management Information System, outlined that the cases include physical and sexual assaults, intimate partner violence, FGM, defilement, harassment and child marriages.

Reacting to the findings, the national coordinator of CPA, Lamin Fatty, commented: “This report highlighted a very serious situation and we are quite disappointed especially because it could even be worst since these are just the reported cases. One wonders how many others are not reported. And even then, among the reported ones, how many have been prosecuted? So, when you look at the rate of reports and the rate of prosecutions, you realise that there is nothing to be proud of,” he said.

Mr Fatty said government must do more because the low level of prosecution implies lack of enforcement with instances where cases have been compromised or withdrawn with perpetrators walking freely in the streets.

He said what is needed is for law enforcement agencies to further strengthen their collaboration with CSOs, especially those working around the area of child protection or gender matters.

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