All the 24 new health facilities built by Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS) have integrated sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) services, Major General Mohamed Badi has said.
This as the NMS Director-General decried the increase in the number of such cases in Nairobi with at least 17 cases being reported in the facilities every day.
He pointed out that at least 6,262 SGBV cases have been reported across county government hospitals in the last 11 months alone.
Most of the cases, said Maj Gen Badi, have been treated at Mama Lucy Hospital’s SGBV centre with 972 cases handled in the same period alone.
Consequently, NMS has set aside a room in each of the new facilities dedicated to responding to victims of SGBV.
The agency has also set up 21 facilities, Tumaini clinics, to provide integrated GBV services aimed at restoring hope and dignity to the survivors as part of celebration of survivors of sexual violence.
“Of these, we linked 50 cases for legal access where, nine perpetrators apprehended, two still in remand, while four of the cases have had positive convictions, said Mr Badi during the launch of a Tumaini Clinic at Mama Lucy Hospital on Friday.
“SGBV is not only a health concern but also a human rights issue and survivors should access medical care, legal aid and psychosocial support including shelter and community reintegration,” he added.
Since its inception in 2015, Mama Lucy Hospital has attended to 5,688 SGBV victims patients with 50 per cent being minors.
Between, October and December last year, the facility managed 326 new cases and 258 survivors while this year alone, the hospital has registered 179 new SGBV cases and 137 survivors.
Mama Lucy Hospital Medical Superintendent Ms Emma Mutio noted that the clinic operates 24 hours a day with five nurses dedicated to the cases.
She pointed out that the facility receives referrals from Dandora, Kayole, Pipeline, Tassia, Embakasi and its surroundings.
Speaking at Mama Lucy Hospital, Lady Justice Agnes Murgor admitted that SGBV cases have not received the much-needed attention from the legal fraternity, saying the vice is a crime that needs to be addressed from all levels.
She observed that coercion of victims, interference by local kangaroo courts, delays in production of critical evidence like DNA and medical reports, lenient bail terms given to perpetrators as well as have stalled delivery of justice to survivors.
Gender-based violence desks
“The Tumaini clinic is just but an example of more of what we need to have in Nairobi for the SGBV victims. Our biggest problem has been where to send the victims of SGBV survivors. But we are now heading in the right direction,” said Justice Murgor.
To entrench support for SGBV survivors, Nairobi County Assembly approved a motion by Deputy Majority Whip Waithera Chege calling for City Hall and NMS to establish gender-based violence desks across all 17 sub counties for victims and survivors in Nairobi.
The South B MCA raised concern that many cases have gone unnoticed, especially this year during the Covid-19 crisis, given the lack of a data management system, specifically for the GBV.
She explained that the desks will provide a proper avenue for reporting such cases hence, improving response and support for victims and survivors.
“We now need the motion to be put into action by both the county executive and NMS. The county government has also failed to allocate any budget towards dealing with his issue,” said Ms Chege.