The Womens Coalition of Zimbabwe (WCoZ) said domestic violence had become entrenched at both community and national structures with statistics showing that 1 in 3 women were being violated.
“According to statistics, this year 2011 alone has recorded over 2536 cases (over 300 cases every month) of domestic violence.
“And a research carried out by Musasa Project, a member organisation show that 1 in 3 women are violated in the home, community and nation at large.
“Violence against women is not only embedded in the homes but has become entrenched in structures and systems both at community and national levels,” WCoZ stated in a statement released on Tuesday.
WCoZ said it called for an end to all forms of domestic violence, adding that it is also coordinating programmes to educate Zimbabweans to end the cycle of violence against women.
“WCoZ is calling for and working towards zero tolerance of violence both in the public and private spheres following the increasing reports on media of the levels of violence being perpetrated against women and girls.
“Therefore, WCoZ is co-ordinating a peace building programme to break the cycle of violence and build a culture of tolerance,” WCoZ added in the statement.
Although Zimbabwe has come up with laws meant to deal with this vice, particularly the Domestic Violence Act, this has not stopped the problems.
Women’s organisations are of the opinion that the penalties under this law are not deterrent enough especially one when considers that cattle rustling carries a heavier sentence than wife-bashing.
In 2007, Zimbabwe passed into law the Domestic Violence Act Chapter 5.16 to allow maximum protection for survivors of domestic violence, provide relief to survivors and long term measures for the prevention of domestic violence.
In a further bid to combat the problem of domestic violence, the Ministry of Women Affairs, Gender and Community Development launched the Anti-domestic Violence Council.