Unity Dow is one of the most powerful women in Botswana. A Role Model.
☆She was the first ever female Judge in the High Court.
☆Runs her own law firm.
☆The first Motswana to Challenge the Constitution
☆Human Rights Activist.Fights for equality and Justice
☆ One of the few women in polictics in our country.
☆A mother and Wife http:// http://edition.cnn.com/2012/06/29/world/africa/unity-dow-botswana-judge/
In an ongoing court battle between foreign prisoners and the Botswana Government where foreign inmates want to be provided with free antiretroviral drugs (ARVs) which the Government of the Republic of Botswana is opposing has raised a lot of Human Rights Issues. Research around the Southern African region has shown that Botswana is the only country that does not provide ARVs to foreign prisoners.
In my opinion the refusal of the government to supply foreign inmates with ARV’s is unjust and an infringement of their rights as human beings. Prisoners’ have constitutional rights in accordance to the prisons act. These rights include the right to life, freedom from inhumane and degrading treatment and to equality.
Although one would say that the government does not have a duty to foreign inmates the fact of the matter is Botswana is home to thousands of foreigners. The actions taken by the government are discriminatory. Where is our sense of the principle of “Ubuntu”, Humanity which is an integral part of our culture as an African society?
Rape is a most serious, humiliating and invasive assault against a person and to suggest that it should be permitted if the perpetrator is a spouse is totally unacceptable and a historic aberration” these were the words of one of the country’s most celebrated High Court Judge, Justice Ian Kirby and I say cheers to that!
A fact that we cannot hide from is that a large number of women are sexually assaulted or raped by their husband every single year. Rape within these conventional relationships hardly ever gets reported mainly because there is an assumption that a wife automatically consents due to the nature of the relationship and most importantly because Botswana does not recognise marital rape as a criminal offense.
I strongly believe that the Marital Immunity Doctrine in Botswana is barbaric. This immunity violates a women’s right to bodily integrity and freedom based on the argument that it is impossible for a husband to rape his wife. The mere fact that rape within a marriage is not recognized goes to show how women are being mutilated in our country and how they are expected to surrender their bodies wholly to their husbands. Just because you are joined together in Holy Matrimony does not mean that he owns you. A woman’s bodily integrity should be respected.
Marriage in Botswana is a civil death not a civil union”– Attaliah Molokomme
Marital Rape is dehumanizing, unjust and a criminal act. Every woman either in Botswana or anywhere else in the world should be afforded the right to refuse consent to sexual activity regardless of the fact that she is married to that person. A NO! Means NO! A marriage certificate or 20 carat diamond ring does not change that. It’s about time the legislature implemented a law that criminalises marital rape so these perpetrators can be put behind bars because of their inhumane and degrading actions towards their wives.
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