“My husband has sexually abused me for eight years”

Kikandwa, Uganda
December, 2010

Domestic violence against women has been identified as one major menaces married women in Kikandwa sub county, Mityana district, are forced to live with. It is also adversely affecting children’s livelihoods. This unfortunate revelation has been established through a series of household visits and interviews carried out by EDOU volunteers in the process of identifying and selecting children beneficiaries for our education project in the area.

All women in the households surveyed reported some case of domestic violence against them by their husbands. Some women were forced out of their marital home by their husbands and left to live with their children without any form of support. This affected the livelihood of children. Some children dropped out of school, forced into hard and child labour while others due to lack of counselling and guidance have acquired unwanted pregnancies. To acerbate the matter, such teenage girls have been forced into marriages by their parents or guardians.

There was also reported abandonment of women by their husbands on suspicion of being HIV positive while others are sexually exploited and abused. At least two women in Kabongezo village reported aggravated sexual abuse by their husband. “My husband has sexually used, no, not used but abused me for eight years,” one woman, whose identity will not be disclosed, testified. “It is like I am his sex machine. He is so aggressive.”

“Violence against women is a real monster in homes here,” remarked Mr. Brian Mutebi EDOU’s Executive Director. “We appreciate the efforts being done to address this problem in the country but much more is needed, at household level.”

EDOU is considering a comprehensive study to enable relevant programming to improve the livelihood of children and women in the area.