In wake of the ongoing problem of domestic violence in Guyana and the recent murders of two women at the hands of their husbands, First Lady Sandra Granger has found herself once again adding her voice to the concern of violence against women in Guyana.
In an interview released by the Ministry of the Presidency, First Lady Sandra Granger said the problem is more than a social issue, but women must not accept any form of abuse.
“We have to train our girls and our women that they are not there to be the pounding boards of whoever they are going with at the time. They do not have to accept the abuse. It is not their role in life to be beaten or disrespected in any way”, Mrs. Granger said.
She noted that there are cases where women are the abusers and although those cases are far less than women being the victims, there is no room that sort of violence in the society.
The First Lady said men and women have to start examining how they see each other and how they view each other, adding that the socialization goes back to childhood and what is taught to boys and girls.
“It goes back to the kind of training and socialization that our children get from inception…So if we start with age-appropriate at the nursery level, these are boys and these are girls and this is how boys respond to threats and this is how girls respond to threats”
Mrs. Granger stated that one cannot ignore the economic issue that faces many women, pointing out that in many instances women would stay in abusive relationships because they might not have anyone else to support them and their children financially.
There have been many cases in Guyana, where charges are filed against the perpetrators of domestic violence and the Court finds itself being forced to dismiss the charges when the victims refuse to offer evidence against the accused.
First Lady Sandra Granger said the laws must be re-examined to deal with that problem.
She said, “my view is that if a case is reported, regardless of what comes under, the case must be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law and people must understand that this is a serious crime.”
Through the Social Protection Ministry, there have been efforts to work along with the Police on how best to deal with domestic violence cases . A number of women have lost their lives to domestic abuse in Guyana over the years.