26 Nov 2003

Action demanded over violence committed against women in Fiji

4:37 pm on 26 November 2003

The Fiji Womens' Rights Movement is calling on the government to act in the face of alarming statistics over the level of violence against women in the country.

It's been estimated that it costs the country 150 million U.S. dollars annually.

A national survery, conducted by the women's crisis centre, of 1500 women indicated that 66 percent of them have at some point been beaten by partners, and 30 percent repeatedly.

Virisila Buadromo, a spokesperson for the Womens' Rights movement, says the research conducted is credible, and proof enough that the government needs to act.

"The government needs to accept the fact that gender violence is a problem in Fiji, they need to take it seriously and they also need to realise that as long as women in this country continue to face violence, that our country will never develop to its full potential"

Ms Buadromo says womens' awareness groups in the country are now lobbying for the government to introduce legislation on domestic violence to protect the wellbeing of women and children.