Ethiopia Launches Sexual Violence Registration System Partnering with South Africa

Ethiopia launches a sexual violence registration system partnering with South Africa to combat gender-based violence.

Ethiopia Launches Sexual Violence Registration System

The Ethiopian government is currently setting up a sexual violence registration system to help stop and respond to sexual violence against women and children.

Ethiopia Launches Sexual Violence Registration System

Ethiopia has taken a significant step forward in combating gender-based violence with the launch of its Sexual Violence Registration System. This initiative comes at a critical time as the country grapples with the pervasive issue of gender-based violence, with statistics revealing alarming rates of violence against women.

According to reports, a staggering 37% of Ethiopian women have experienced gender-based violence, highlighting the urgent need for intervention. Additionally, studies indicate that nearly one in every three women will endure physical or sexual intimate violence or non-partner sexual assault in their lifetime.

These distressing statistics underscore the pervasive nature of gender-based violence in Ethiopian society.

The Challenges in Addressing Gender-Based Violence in Ethiopia

One of the primary challenges in addressing gender-based violence in Ethiopia has been the lack of accountability for perpetrators and the tolerance of violent acts within communities. Many perpetrators feel emboldened to commit crimes with impunity, perpetuating a cycle of violence and hindering women’s access to essential services.

What the Sexual Violence Registration System Aims To Address

The Sexual Violence Registration System aims to address these challenges by holding sex offenders accountable even after they have served their sentences.

Under the new system, registered sex offenders will be prohibited from working in sensitive environments such as schools, orphanages, and other children’s institutions, thereby safeguarding vulnerable populations from potential harm.

Funded by various institutions with approximately 10 million birr ($176,000), the Sexual Violence Registration System will feature three types of pages, one of which will be accessible to the public.

This transparent approach aims to foster accountability and transparency while empowering communities to take a stand against gender-based violence.

The Prevalence of Gender-Based Violence in Ethiopia

The prevalence of gender-based violence in Ethiopia is not unique to the country but is a widespread issue across the African continent. Sub-Saharan Africa, in particular, has reported high rates of gender-based violence, with over one-fifth of girls and women experiencing physical or sexual violence from current or former partners.

In comparison, North Africa also faces significant challenges, with nearly 15% of girls and women affected by gender-based violence.

Other African Countries to Follow Similar Developments

Ethiopia’s efforts to combat gender-based violence are mirrored in other African countries, with South Africa leading the way with its National Register for Sex Offenders Act.

Established in 2007, this registry tracks individuals convicted of sexual offenses against children and mentally disabled individuals, ensuring that they are barred from working in positions involving vulnerable populations.

Unlike Ethiopia’s public-facing registry, South Africa’s system maintains confidentiality, with information accessible only to authorized entities. This approach ensures the protection of victims while enabling employers to make informed decisions about hiring individuals with a history of sexual offenses.

Other African countries, including Kenya, Nigeria, and Ghana, have also introduced similar systems to address gender-based violence, albeit at varying levels of implementation. These initiatives reflect a collective commitment to combating gender-based violence and creating safer communities for all.

What Ethiopia’s Launch of the Sexual Violence Registration System Represents

In conclusion, Ethiopia’s launch of the Sexual Violence Registration System represents a critical milestone in the fight against gender-based violence. By promoting accountability, transparency, and prevention, Ethiopia is taking proactive steps to safeguard the rights and dignity of its citizens and pave the way for a more equitable and just society.



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