- Tunisia is the only country in Africa whose domestic law on combating violence against women recognizes and defines political violence.
- Their law, adopted in 2017, also provides for specific sanctions against perpetrators of this form of violence
Siasa Place is calling on Parliament to amend existing laws on Gender-based violence to include provisions criminalising political gender-based violence.
The lobby, in a report on Gender-based violence as a barrier to women's participation in Parliament, said electoral gender-based violence should be recognised.
They said the repercussions of no legal recognition can vary but make women reluctant to participate in the electoral process.
"Legislative reforms need to be made to ensure that women in politics are protected and so are women, youth and marginalsied groups who go out to vote," they said.
The report said that Tunisia is the only country in Africa whose domestic law on combating violence against women, adopted in 2017, recognises and defines political violence.
"Their law also provides specific sanctions for this form of violence," the report read.
Siasa Place said that in Kenya’s political scene, violence against women occurs in parties despite laws and policies that outlaw sexual and gender-based violence.
"While the state has developed legal frameworks that safeguard all from any form of violence, there are systemized patriarchal systems that operate in either vague,non-accountable or oppressive environments," they said.
This prevents addressing Electoral Sexual and Gender-based (ESGBV) and online GBV.
"SGBV is a primary form of political violence against “ordinary” women and men, particularly when elections lead to an outbreak of violence," they said.
Additionally, they added, the desire to exert political dominance and power, including control over particular communities, is frequently the impetus behind the violence.
"Due to power structures within the parties, young men also face violence and harassment from older, more established members," they said.
A report by Fida Kenya on ESGBV indicates that 1746 cases were reported between April 1 to September 30, 2022.
"Verbal and Hate speech took over 54 per cent of reported cases, followed by cyberbullying at 23 per cent," they said.
More severe ESGBV cases like forced circumcision, defilement, rape, sexual assault and attempted rape were reported.