Sarah Nyirabashitsi Mateke, Minister of State for Youth and Children Affairs, has condemned the growing rate of child maltreatment, including defilement, physical torture, adolescent pregnancy, and neglect.
In 2020, 14,230 children were defiled, according to the Annual Police Crime Report (2020). There were 14,080 girls and 140 boys among them.
It also stated that 1,280 children were between the ages of 0 and 8, 2,980 between the ages of 9 and 14, and 9,954 between the ages of 15 and 17.
Apart from the perpetrators of these crimes, Mateke added that the fact that 120 of these children were defiled by their parents, 120 by their guardians, 52 by instructors, and 301 by HIV-positive individuals is particularly worrisome.
“It’s apparent that many more youngsters are suffering in silence,” says the author. We don’t want to raise our children in this manner. “What we’re seeing is a leadership failure at the family and community levels,” she explained.
She asked parents and guardians to recognize their roles in protecting the safety and security of children in their care.
“The law requires parents and guardians to provide for their children’s welfare and protection, and failing to do so might result in charges of neglect. “Community members are expected to ensure that children live in a safe environment, and they are expected to report reports of abuse to the police and other local authorities as soon as possible,” she said.
She stated that when children are abused, community people should refrain from looking on and taking no action, and that the government is committed to supplying and protecting children.