Over the past few days, Namibian women and men have been sharing their experiences of sexual violence, harassment and abuse on Twitter. They have been brave enough to speak out and name their perpetrators and we have heard them. This has birthed the #MeTooNamibia Movement.
A coalition of humanitarian organizations has rallied behind victims of sexual abuse who have exposed their rapists and abusers and has launched Namibia’s version of the #MeToo in Windhoek today. In a statement issued the group said: “We want to put an end to the culture of fear and the intimidation used by perpetrators to silence survivors.”
The coalition of which the First Lady of Namibia(Flon) is partners have mobilized the technical support which will enable them to provide psycho-social and legal support to all survivors of sexual and gender-based violence who would like to seek recourse.
“Our partnership with Life-Line has provided us with access to the 106 GBV helpline as one of several support options and we encourage survivors to reach out to Slut Shame Walk or the GBV 106 Helpline and they are assured of assistance to either open a case or receive counseling or both,” the statement read.
The #MeToo movement seeks to encourage survivors to speak out and assure that they are not alone.
“Your story helps us highlight the far-reaching impact of sexual and gender-based violence in our country. It helps us keep alleged perpetrators responsible for their actions, deters would-be perpetrators and encourages other survivors to speak out too. Together, we can disrupt the stigma attached to sexual assault. We can keep perpetrators accountable and create important discussions about consent, assault, personal safety and toxic gender relations which fuel disrespectful behavior towards one another,” read the statement