|'Women and girls in The Gambia are victims of gender-based violence, and with very little support for
redress, they are harassed to silence.' Photo Credit: UN Photo / M. Perret -Violence against women|
By Ebrima Bah, freelance journalist
Sohna Bah, a native of Kiang Sibito is hospitalised for sustaining injuries from a multiple knife stabbing allegedly by one Samba Ceesay of Jarra Misira.
Family sources said Sohna is in "critical condition" at the Edward Francis Small Teaching Hospital in Banjul where she is nursing injuries on her chest, stomach, and leg since September 27.
"This is the second time of a similar attack on her by the same suspect," a relative said.
"The first attack was in June when the same man stabbed her on the head after which he fled the country."
Upon the resent attack, Samba was on police bail for his first offense at Sanchaba Sulay Jobe, the place where the incident occurred.
The reason for the attack is not clear but Sohna’s family believes it is connected to their decision to marry her to a man other than the suspect.
Meanwhile, the relatives of Sohna expressed dismay over the way their case is handled by the police.
“We are not aware of any arrest of the boy or his bail surety. We are disappointed with the granting of bail after he committed such a crime and fled the country for months,” one of her uncles said.
The police public relation officer, Foday JK Conta, said he is yet to receive information regarding this case. He however promised to work with the victim’s family to ensure the exercise of justice.
Violence against women
Gender activist, Isatou Bittaye, said women and girls in The Gambia are victims of gender-based violence, and with very little support for redress, they are harassed to silence.
Gambia's former Vice President Isatou Njie-Saidy said the world faces a major public health problem as a result of violence against women.
"Gender-based violence, or violence against women is a major public health and human rights problem throughout the world. Violence against women has profound implications for health but it is often ignored," she said during a seminar on ending gender-based violence in The Gambia.
Statistics from UN Women shows that “one in every three women in the world will be raped or beaten in her lifetime.”
Among women between the ages of 15-44, gender-based violence accounts for more death and disability than the combined effects of cancer, malaria, traffic injuries and war.
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