Intimate partners and family members are some of the biggest perpetrators of violence against women as the number of women experiencing cases of domestic abuse and death continue to increase across the country.
This is according to a new report by the Africa Data Hub which shows that more women are likely to experience violence or even death in the hands of their partners or family members.
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The data, which is a compilation of statistics on femicide across the country, shows that on average, about 75% of killings are committed by a person who is known to the murdered woman. This could be an intimate partner, relative or even a friend.
“In most cases, the murder of a woman was committed due to a family quarrel. The reason for aggression on the part of a man towards a woman can be anything – any domestic issues or attempts by women to walk away from relationships.
“At the same time, men justify their actions by saying that they could not restrain themselves or were angry because the woman, in their opinion, did something wrong,” says the data.
Just two days ago, police in Nairobi began an investigation into the suspected murder of two women separately killed in the city in what the authorities believed were suspected cases of domestic violence.
The first incident happened when a 24-year-old woman died in hospital after a domestic fight with a man said to be her boyfriend. The incident occured in Nairobi’s Githurai 44 on Saturday, January 20 night. A report filed by the police identified the woman as Grace Wangari.
“In this context, home refers to a shared space between the victim and the perpetrator, which could involve couples cohabiting or situations where either the victim or the suspect frequents the residence,” the data shows.
“Our analysis shows that most often than not, the murders of women are often preceded by domestic violence. Many of the murdered women were systematically abused by their husbands and partners,” it added.
Equally, the counties of Nairobi, Kiambu, and Nakuru have reported the highest incidences of femicide-related killings.
The report however notes that it is crucial to note that due to data limitations and uneven news coverage across the country, this doesn’t necessarily indicate that they have the highest overall murder rates.
“Some counties either underreport murder cases or omit details about the circumstances, making it challenging to determine if the incidents qualify as femicide.
“Additionally, certain areas lack news correspondents or media bureaus, resulting in limited local coverage that may not reach the national level. This underscores the complexity of obtaining a comprehensive understanding of femicide trends nationwide,” the data shows.