A woman who lives at Gongo la mboto, Dar es Salaam was beaten by her husband last week after their daughter of 16 years old was discovered to be pregnant. According to this woman, who chose to remain anonymous due to safety issues, said that her husband has blamed her for what has happened to their daughter, saying that she was not responsible for her.
The Legal and Human Rights Centre (LHRC) Media Survey of 2012 has recorded a record number of incidences of Gender Based Violence in Tanzania such as Neisisiri Mokoroo (25), who was attacked by her husband with a stick while pregnant and died shortly after. The husband claimed that he was not responsible for her pregnancy accusing her of being unfaithful. Neema Ngoko (17), from Tamuker village in Tarime was brutally beaten by her husband and locked indoors for two weeks despite being pregnant.
Speaking to a daughter who was impregnated, she said that “my mother has nothing to do with this. Besides, she was the one insisting on being careful with men and not allowing them to touch me. But I’m the one to be blamed because I did not put into consideration what my mother was telling me.”
Ally Abdallah Banana, another resident in the area, had this to say, “A woman is the one responsible for taking care of the children and if children misbehave then she is the one to be blamed and being beaten is acceptable so she can learn a lesson.”
According to Anna Jerry Vingunguti, a resident, “caring for children is the duty of all parents and not the mother only, since a child is the product of both parents and if something bad happened to the kid, parents have to cooperate in solving the problem instead of putting all the blame to a woman.”
Manyaki Ntiba, a resident of Kitunda, said “wife beating is the behaviour of most Tanzanian men and for the women? we have just to bear with it, because there is nothing we can do. They are men you can’t compete with.”
On the other hand, Jacob Emmanuel, a Kinondoni resident, represented a different point of view.
“Wife beating is an outdated thing and a man practicing that is a fool. You married your wife so as she can help you in your life and not for you to beat her. She is not a little kid so if she makes a mistake just talk to her, she will understand,” he said.
He also added that there is no woman who would want her child to misbehave, so is not right to beat a woman when a child commits a mistake because she also suffers a lot for the child.
The Constitution of the United Republic of Tanzania (1977) guarantees equality of all citizens. Therefore, men and women are all supposed to be treated equally.
Grace’s goal is to become a successful journalist who helps the community in fighting for their rights, and national development at large.