Papua New Guinea’s Governor Julie Soso Akeke participated in the third Pacific Women’s Parliamentary Partnerships forum earlier this year and has offered her reflections in a brief interview. The three-day forum was primarily focussed on discussing the issue of violence against women across the Pacific and how it should be addressed at Government level. The alarmingly high incidence of gender-based violence in Papua New Guinea is one of the Governor’s major concerns.
The Governor explains the cycle of violence in Papua New Guinea in graphic detail:
“Women are always being accused of practising witchcraft and some have been murdered. These murders also affect the families of the victims – seeing their mother or sister being burnt, being cut to pieces, being killed and thrown into the toilet. What happens is that, often families of the victims take revenge against the family who committed the crime and the cycle continues. This happens in villages and tribes and many times, is the cause of tribal fights. We need to implement the Acts and legislations to stop this “
IWDA’s Funding Leadership and Opportunities for Women program partner Jiwaka Women Human Rights Defenders work in Papua New Guinea to tackle the staggering levels of violence against women there.