GBV rescue centre established in Juba’s Mangateen
A South Sudanese youth group, known as Active Citizen South Sudan, has established a gender-based violence rescue centre in Juba’s Mangateen residential area to help fight the vice.
The initiative comes at a time when the country faces a surge in cases of GBV. For instance, in 2021, South Sudan health authorities said they responded to approximately 330 cases of rape, physical violence, and other issues related to gender-based violence (GBV) across the country.
The data included Mangateen.
However, delays in reporting the cases have continued to be the biggest challenge due to the lack of centres to deal with the cases in the area.
“There have been a lot of cases.” “Some people used to rape girls at night, kidnap them sometimes, and force marriages; so these cases are likely now to reduce since there is a centre to attend to the GBV practices,” said James Yien, a resident of Mangateen, in an interview.
The centre is currently under the operations of the police officers who are administering the services in the facility.
Mark Malith, a police officer in charge of criminal investigation at sector 3, representing the Criminal Prevention department of the unit, said they were optimistic about making sure that GBV cases were contained in the area.
“We would like to save the community in this hub. When GBV cases happen in the area, we must control the situation by consolidating victims, and after that, we transfer the case to Munuki police station for follow-up,” he narrated in an interview at the centre over the weekend.
“So, for us, we are an emergency team, and it is our responsibility in the area to control any situation of that kind whenever it happens,” he added.
Mary Nyakong, another resident of Mangateen, said the community was glad following the establishment of the GBV hub.
“Our community in Mangateen is happy about the establishment of the GBV hub. This is a way of supporting the community, and the right of the child, in our community. So, we are glad to join hands together and control the situation,” she stated.
Since the establishment of the facility, over 10 cases of sexual assault and harassment have been noted.
The police officer said they would commit to work so that the GBV was brought to an end in the area.
Nevertheless, the workforce at the facility said the centre lacks means of mobility especially when urgent cases occur at night.
Nyakanesa Magaw, Sexual Gender-Based Violence (SGBV) officer, at Active Citizen South Sudan believes the GBV cases would be amicably addressed in the new facility.
“It was important for us, to play our role as an organization, especially on a GBV project to save the community in Mangateen. So, we hope our communities in Mangateen benefit from the services, “she said.
According to Ms Magaw, the organization would commit to the sustainability aspect of the centre to assist the locals.
“The station will be sustainable when we get funds; we shall continue to save the community because we are facing these cases a lot,” she concluded.
It is the first of its kind, a gender-based violence centre set up in the Mangateen residential area in Juba.
The project was supported by German Cooperation, through Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ).