Youth and Women

Fight against date rape escalates

By Nyasha Mutena

Many married women have admitted that they were date raped and they are living with the perpetrators. This was revealed during Katswe Sisterwood organization’s campaign against date rape which shall witness the escalation of voices for policy makers to include a clause which focuses primarily on date rape.

Young boys and girls who attended the function held on the 1st of April 2021 agreed they didn’t know that they were date raped before the campaign. Representatives from Zimbabwe Republic Police and Health institutions encouraged the enlightened group to urge others to report date rape cases without fear and demystify date rape especially to fellow colleagues for them to understand that it is a crime.D

Date rape is a term colloquially used to refer to sexual assault by a person involved in a romantic or potentially romantic relationship with the victim.

According to research, 31% of young people between the ages of 18 to 24 encountered their first sexual intercourse through date rape. 78% of females reported having had experienced violence from partners and mainly sexual violence and among those, only 7% got help and medical services.

Girls and women are more likely to be raped, but it can also happen to guys. It’s not just men who rape. In rare cases, women rape, too.

Katswe Sisterwood Director, Talent Jumo said they are in the process of launching the program at national level to illuminate the whole country what date rape is and everything that victims must do when confronted with the situation. She added that since rape is a complex issue, they are in the process of lobbying policy makers to design a clause which focuses on date rape.

Katswe Sisterwood is working with young people comprising of 80 girls and 20 boys per district whom they are educating on date rape, among other social wellbeing matters such as Gender Based Violence. Mazowe and Goromonzi districts were present during this function.

She emphasized that nothing can ever justify raping someone or the reasons why someone was raped, not even dressing.

“The person who gets raped is not to blame. Rape is always the rapist’s fault. People never “ask for it” because of the clothes they wear or the way they act. If sex is forced against someone’s will, it’s rape. That’s true even when two people are dating or married — even if they’ve had sex before. You never “owe” someone sex, even if you’re a couple.

“Again, rape is not always violent. If you say “no,” but the person doesn’t respect your wishes and talks you into something that you don’t want, it’s rape. You cannot cook tea and force your visitors to drink it because you had already prepared it for them,” said Talent.

They go on to say that rapists use different tactics including alcohol and drugs. Drinking can loosen inhibitions, reduce common sense, and — for some people — allow aggressive tendencies to surface.

These drugs are powerful and dangerous, and mixing them with alcohol is especially dangerous. People can end up dead if they’re given a date rape drug when they’ve been drinking.