'5 000 children raped annually'

MUTARE - Women Affairs, Gender and Community Development minister Oppah Muchinguri has revealed extraordinary figures showing the extent of the rape of children below the age of 16.

The statistics show that the number of victims is nearly 5 000 a year, with very few of the attackers convicted let alone arrested.

Senior police officers believe actual numbers of rapes may be far higher because many children or their parents do not report the crimes.

It is the first time Muchinguri has released such statistics, and was speaking during National Families Day commemorations in Mutare last week.

The statistics are staggering, Muchinguri said as she called on government to send a clear message to would-be offenders that they cannot commit this horrible crime and get away with it.

She said the single most important action Zimbabwe can do to prevent rape is to put all rapists in prison, and called for a minimum sentence of 30 years.

“In just two-and-half years, takareperwa vana vanokwana 10 000 (we had 10 000 children raped),” Muchinguri said.

“Vazhinji vacho isusu vanamai tinotuma vana kunotenga zvinhu kumashops kamusikana kane five years, kwozouyazve tinoti endai kuma extra lessons nemurume. Tiri kuchengeta mutown chibage chakakura, ndomunobhinywa vana imomo (Mostly, it’s us mothers who send children as young as five to shops to buy stuff, we also allow young girls to go for extra lessons with men and we also grow maize fields in towns and this is where most of the rapes occur.)”

Almost every day, local newspapers report on cases of children who have been sexually abused, often by their own relatives and by men who mistakenly believe they will be cured of Aids if they sleep with virgins. Others are misled by traditional healers that their businesses would thrive if they raped toddlers.

Trade unionists, human rights groups, women’s movements and schoolchildren have demanded — through street marches — that more needs to be done to fight against this scourge of the rape of children.

Feelings in the country are running so high that some women are demanding that those found guilty of rape be castrated.

“Mapurisa edu aya ngaasunge munhu auraya munhu nekuti rape kuuraya munhuka. (The police should arrest these murderers because raping a child is as good as killing them),” said Muchinguri.

“We want 30 years and above. Zvecommunity service zviya zvobva zvapera. Anonyeperawo munhu kuti ukaraper mwana Aids yako inobva yapera, n’anga yacho inobva yasungwawo 30 years in jail ((No community service for rapists. Those traditional leaders who also lie and advise people that if you rape a virgin, you will be cured of Aids, the witch doctors who gave that prescription should also be sentenced to 30 years in jail.)”

Muchinguri implored parents to take greater care of their children and particularly keep communication lines open.

“Mufamily tirikuchengetedza here vana, role yamai yacho? Tinotaura here nevana vedu kuti tinzwe kuti chii chirikuitika? (In our families are we protecting our children and playing our role as mothers? Are we communicating with our children to find out what will be taking place?)”

Muchinguri urged sexually abused adolescents to seek help from people they trust. Most  victims keep quiet about the attacks.

She also raised concern at the growing cases of aggravated indecent assault by females on males, which she said was equivalent to rape.

A syndicate of female “rapists” has  gone on the rampage along the country’s major highways, picking up male hitchhikers and “raping” them at gunpoint, before harvesting their sperm which is reportedly sold for use in money-making rituals.

Muchinguri called for redefinition of rape, saying the tables have turned now and women were now also sexually abusing their male counterparts as well.

She also raised concern over the shenanigans by affluent widows who she said were luring underage boys for sexual exploitation.

Comments (15)

FOR SALE HP TONER CARTRIDGES 05A, 10A, 12A, 13A, 15A, 24A, 35A, 36A, 49A, 51A, 53A, 55A, 61A, 64A, 70A, 78A, 80A, 85A, 90A, AND MANYMORE 0772 678 311

ORIGINAL - 19 May 2014

Cde Muchinguri, you are doing the right thing barking but the wrong tree. The issue is "Tsika dzedu" dzamarasa kumarara Cde Minister. Please realise that if girls get the unnecessary freedom from uncaring parents they are exposed to make premature sex decisions which parents concort that it was rape. Please check the age groups of those going muchibage. Men want sex and their desires has to be satisfied by the woman's thing at disposal, the call of nature. Our girls need good moral values, examples and discipline. You can't promote sexuality day in and day out by MUSIC, TOURISM SHOWS AND MEDIA FORA and expect to control moral issues by jail. You are joking Cde Minister. Stop pointing fingers at men. Check us women too. We are driven by greed and carelessness hence we become prey. Cde Minister behavior change should be in our laws. What we do on national platforms does it promote or encourage high sexual activity or not. Guys, the TV has destroyed our homes and you, our leaders are immoral in clothing, in talk and life. You are a wrong model of morality.

Chingura Hunhu HweMwanasikana - 19 May 2014

Amai Muchinguri tangai maona kuti tsika dzedu dzarasika papi mozotaura zvenyu izvi. Extended family hakuchina

Furatidzai Chisingaitwi Bhobho - 19 May 2014

ko muno separeta kubhinywa kwemwanasikana nemwanakoamana muchiti rape(girl) and abuse(boy) why? Any cde hamuna kotitaurira zvikonzero zviri kuita kuti rape iwande mangofungidzira sekugara kwazvakaita. panodiwa ongororo chaiyo kuti mutigone mamisiro e rape yacho.dzokai kutsika dzedu siyanai nechiungu chamuno unzirwa namadonor ichi kwawo hakuna izvozvo

nyanga - 19 May 2014

You are the same people who were encouraging your Boarder Gezi gangs to rape our children, sisters, mother and garannies as punishment for supporting the opposition. Now madzvara mweya wechibhinya munyika moda kuchema nhema. Rapists like Kereke have been free for how many years kubva paakabhinya mwana wevanhu? Kubva kuma80s. zvimayouth brigade zvenyu zvaingobhinya vana, then 5 brigade, the boaders gezis...you have perfrcted the art of teachin rape as a tool of torcher. dodnt pretend to be pained Oppah. You are a liar. On another note, who killed Tongogara? You were there and you know the truth. Lets see if you can tell the truth even for once in your lifetime!

Tongogara weChachacha - 19 May 2014

The above statistics are high, threw me back. It means on average an under age girl gets raped every 2 hours in Zimbabwe. That can not happen. Rape of a minor is a serious offense. The government should do more, open more child friendly departments in Police stations as well as courts. We simply have to convict more of these perpetrators to make a difference, hang a few if we must. If a dodgy traditional doctor is involved, should be jailed too. DA tests kits have to be in every police station across the country to speed the process up. If we can't protect our future generation then we have completely lost our way.

taps - 19 May 2014

...property maintenance services- painting, ceilings, fireplaces and roof repairs. trust us we do it. call 0714247097 or email- ursrepairs@gmail.com for a quote.

repairs.. - 19 May 2014

haya zvana Oppah ichamushunya-mushunya chaicho hameno kana makambochitamba kwenyu. zvinorwadza hazvo chete kungoti pembe dzinomuririre wakaita dzema ref dzafanana, mukaita semunobvawo mudzimba, dzokono mangokuma nebasa EHE MUNOREVA DIKO ASI MURIKURIDZA MURI KUPI?

Chidondova - 19 May 2014

This woman is doing a good job currently. What she should advocate now is the kurohwa kwevana vachirairwa not kuti mwana kana arohwa hanzi abuse. This is the result of freedom of the girl child. If parents are given their rightful authority this rubbish will go disappear for sure.

Wings of change - 19 May 2014

rape haina kunaka asi mafigures ako iexaggeration; vanasikana vanobva pa12 to 16 ndivo vari in majority and these are already sexually mature. ndivo vanoto tanga asi vozoti irape after 2 years yokukwirwa maube aita pregnant. saka bvisa this age group. iwe pachako wakakwirwa une makore mangani, sei usina kureporter rape pawaizhakwa naanaTongo kuhondo? don't vent your anger wongowawata, toda a way forward. 30 years unodziziva iwe?

Taku - 20 May 2014

Uku ndokunonzi kuwawata. Tusikana itutu ndotunato tanga varume and old men for that matter. If you ask that Minister kuti chii chinonzi tsika dzedu anotokuudza kuti kutamba ngoma uri half dressed, shame on her. These are the guys who are misleading the youths and the nation as a whole. Inozonzi rape kana wawanikidzwa. Tibvireyipo

Nyashanu - 20 May 2014

Please dont discourage debate on such important national matters. Rape is taking place as Mai Muchinguru is saying. Dont attack her but instead give your views and opinions. My own view is 80% of the time women have themselves to blame. Tell me Mai Machinguru, everyday we read stories of prophets raping women, yet you find a woman agreeing to go deep into the bush alone to receive deliverance. You read of stories where school girls primary or secondary, being lured and given sweets and then raped. Iyo nyaya yenyu yekuda kudya zvinhu zvemahara iyoyo musiyane nayo. On the other side, nyaya dzenyu dze gender violence are now boring. You get a woman married or unmarried, girls having a string of boyfriends and is murdered is a love triangle and you start crying gender violence. Mai Muchinguri i think you need to discuss these issues very seriouly with other women. If you feel its now woman's right to have as many boyfriends as she can handle please come clean. You now have a very dangerous trend were women are getting into marriage double footed engaging in infedilty and promiscous behavoir knowing too well she will claim maintence if she is divorced.

Bvumai - 20 May 2014

Cde Muchinguri,your ZANU PF bought&promoted chihure.Forget abt age. If only ZPF can teach morals both at school & at home, all will be fine. Clearly, women abuse freedom at their own peril.Women need men's love & protection. It is said,'TEACH A WOMAN & YOU HAVE TAUGHT THE NATION,'but if you teach a man,you have taught an individual.Men are individuals Cde. What does 'honour ladies mean? Please teach MORALS in women first. Just look at their dressing!There is no such thing as 'GENDER EQUALITY ON EARTH.'

HYPOCRITES - 20 May 2014

Cde Muchinguri,your ZANU PF bought&promoted chihure.Forget abt age. If only ZPF can teach morals both at school & at home, all will be fine. Clearly, women abuse freedom at their own peril.Women need men's love & protection. It is said,'TEACH A WOMAN & YOU HAVE TAUGHT THE NATION,'but if you teach a man,you have taught an individual.Men are individuals Cde. What does 'honour ladies mean? Please teach MORALS in women first. Just look at their dressing!There is no such thing as 'GENDER EQUALITY ON EARTH.'

HYPOCRITES - 20 May 2014

I am worried by the sentiments shared by fellow Zimbabweans on this fora. The issues that Hon. Muchunguri has brought up are shocking and should receive urgent attention from everyone. The reason why children under the age of 16 are regarded as minors is bcz zvakaonekwa kuti vanenge vasati vanyatsokura papfungwa to be able to make informed decisions. So yes they throw themselves at men for whatever reason BUT the onus is on the grown men to know kuti AIWA UYU MWANA MUDIKI! If I am in a kombi and I sit next to a nine year old akandikumbira mudzanga wefodya ndomupa hangu just bcz he has asked for it here veduwe? Aiwazve, mwana and he needs guidance. That is what we shld be addressing as a nation, bringing back the family value sytem where taibetserana kurera vana vedu as a nation kwete kuti aah mwana wenyu ndiye anditanga. Besides most of these issues are genuine rape cases which do not include love affairs. @Bvumai, hama yangu noone has a right to be violent to anyone including if the partner has been promiscous! Good job Cde. Oppah, now we need to try and find a solution to this menace that is eating away our future generations!

Baba2 - 20 May 2014

Post a comment

Readers are kindly requested to refrain from using abusive, vulgar, racist, tribalistic, sexist, discriminatory and hurtful language when posting their comments on the Daily News website.
Those who transgress this civilised etiquette will be barred from contributing to our online discussions.
- Editor

Your email address will not be shared.