Burundi women protesting/VOA image

The call that opposing views must be managed by impregnating the women and torturing the males must be rejected with the contempt it deserves. This
call reminds me of Quentin Crisp who once said “Men get laid, but women
get screwed”. The call is a perpetuation of serious male chauvinistic tendencies. It cannot be that when people want to convey a dissenting view, they use women as a means to communicate a particular message.

Boko Haram in Nigeria did the same with the Chibok girls, the Malawian traditional healer famously known as the ’Hyne Man’, until his arrest used to force sex on widows as part of a traditional cleansing ceremony. In South Africa recently, a Nigerian Tel-evangelist Timothy Omotoso was arrested for allegations of rape amongst other offences. In many spheres of society women often remain victims. They continue to be subjected to sexual violations and other despicable indignities. Their bodies continue to be objectified and their voices disregarded.

A call in the form of songs that promote rape of opposition women to make them pregnant and bear Imbonerakure [those who see afar in Kurundi language] children made by the Youth Wing of the ruling party in Burundi is an unfortunate reminder that tribalism and sexism are rife. Under these conditions, a lot of human rights violation continue to go unreported as the ruling party pays lip service to the problem.

Human Rights Watch has reported the involvement of Imbonerakure in arresting and attacking opposition members, carrying out torture and gang-raping women. President Pierre Nkurunzuza has overtime shown that he does not care. He is interested in ruling with an iron feast, with no room for opposition to air their views. He clearly doesn’t care about women abuse and the call to rape young people.

This call is incorrect as it spreads a message that sex must be used as a
weapon in conflict situations. Young people in Africa must engage each
other in a civil manner befitting democratic societies. The very notion of
employing such degenerative tactics to resolve disputes should earn Imbonerakure the Pan African Youth Union indignation. Young people of Africa must be preoccupied with making our continent better.

As we continue to encourage learning and information sharing, we envisage
continental inter-trade led by young people. An environment where young
people will not think of killing those who don’t agree with them; where
they will believe in engagement rather than violence. Young people of
Burundi must unite and make their country a better place where opposition
is tolerated and sexism is shunned. The gains of gender activists must not
be reversed.

Rhulani Thembi Siweya is the founder of Africa Unmasked and an NEC member of the ANCYL, she writes in her capacity as patron of Africa Unmasked.

Ends

Disclaimer: Views expressed in this section are the author's own and do not represent the editorial policy of Kairo News. Kairo News will trash any comment that inflames tribal, racial or religious hatred.

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