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Fiji Time: 1:59 PM on Friday 22 August

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Law to protect women, children

Sheenal Sharma
Tuesday, December 11, 2012

VANUAKULA Village in Tavua has implemented a new law to provide greater protection to women and children.

This was revealed during a visit to the village by Social Welfare, Women and Poverty Alleviation Minister Dr Jiko Luveni.

She said people needed to break the culture of silence and report cases of domestic violence.

"Many times a lot of cases of domestic violence are not recorded," she said.

Dr Luveni said violence not only left emotional scars but was an economic cost for the nation.

Vanuakula Soqosoqo Vakamarama president Tarusila Uqeuqe said rural women were victims of violence because of poverty and cultural barriers.

Mrs Uqeuqe said no violence had been recorded in the village since the implementation of the new village law.

"Everybody, particularly men, are now giving more attention to their families and women and youths are given opportunities to speak on village development issues," she said.

Mrs Uqeuqe said women were the victims of violence and they suffered in silence.

"This is no longer acceptable in Vanuakula and stopping violence is now everybody's business."

Village headman Solomone Fagu said anyone found breaking the law would be dealt with by the gatekeeping committee.

"Last year we had a number of domestic violence cases and this year with the help from police and the ministry, the villagers participated in workshops on the Domestic Violence Decree and Crimes Decree," said Mr Fagu.

He said a gatekeeping committee had been formed to ensure the new law was respected and honoured.


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