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Sexual Violence against the Male Gender (SVMG) was the first established team of CAJPHR. We believe in the establishment of just, peaceful and inclusive societies. The project squarely falls under the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goal 16 which clearly states that “people everywhere need to be free of fear from all forms of violence and feel safe as they go about their lives whatever their ethnicity, faith or sexual orientation”. Furthermore, the Sexual Violence Team also propagates, in its objectives, the establishment of multi stakeholder’s partnership in line with SDG 17. Goal 17 that calls for a “global partnership for sustainable development” includes as multi-tasked holders the national governments, civil society, scientists, academia and the private sector — to strive together to achieve the sustainable development goals. The Sexual Violence Team indirectly supports SDG 5 that seeks to “achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls”. A safe society for men will mean a safer society for women, too, which will, in turn, result in greater equality between men and women.
Aims to create awareness on sexual violence perpetrated against the male gender in conflict and post-conflict situations.
To break the silence and create awareness concerning the stigma surrounding sexual violence against the male gender by conducting research, publishing articles, as well as engaging stakeholders and policymakers in conversations on the subject and advocate for legislator change in domestic jurisdictions where sexual violence against men and boys is not recognised.
We strongly believe that the discourse and interactive sessions shared among the participants shall result in recommendations and action plans developed concerning how to address the stigma surrounding sexual violence against male child soldiers in situations of armed conflict. Ultimately, our target is to have shared and received valuable information, all the while providing recommendations on how to improve coordination between various international courts, organizations, and tribunals in hopes of sustaining a coherent approach towards tackling the issue.
We have successfully organized and executed a series of conferences in the past and the upcoming event would be our third annual conference. In 2018, we partnered with The Hague University of Applied Sciences to organise a Symposium titled ‘Sexual Violence: The Male Perspective’. This symposium discussed the phenomenon of sexual violence against the male gender and how to subvert stereotypical ideologies for a better acknowledgement of male victimhood in the law and society. Furthermore, in collaboration with Feminist of Maastricht, we recently organised out 2019 annual conference titled ‘Sexual Violence: The Male Perspective’ with focus on the theme ‘Unseen, Unheard, Unspoken’ at Maastricht University, where several experts elaborated on the issue of sexual violence against the male gender during and post armed conflict from a societal and legal perspective.
Reports from our events will be sent to a number of States as a call to improve their domestic criminal legislation to include the male gender. We will continue to address and advocate for raising awareness of male victims against sexual violence victimization.
Centre for African Justice, Peace and Human Rights organizes annual conferences on sexual violence perpetrated against the male gender. The Conference invite resource persons from various backgrounds that engage in issues concerning sexual violence against males. This includes judges, legislators, prosecutors, defence attorneys, academics, psychologists, NGOs, religious organisations, as well as law students, amongst others. Victims also occasionally participate by sharing their experiences at the conference, with some preferring to remain anonymous than others.
The Conference aims to:
Our next Annual Conference: “Sexual Violence in Conflict Situations: The Case of Child Soldiers” on 11th February 2020.
The Research and Database Project provides resources on sexual violence against the male gender in international law and domestic law – the latter of which focuses on African regions. RDP aims to create a comprehensive database which contains laws of African countries pertaining to sexual violence against the male gender in particular. The Database will consist of information regarding existing legislation, statutory instruments, decided cases, books and articles on sexual violence in the region of focus. The Database will also include procedures on reporting, investigating and prosecuting sexual violence in the jurisdictions mentioned above; which will be continuously updated in line with recent jurisdictional legal developments.
The Database will create a one-stop research point with information concerning both past and present developments regarding prosecuting sexual violence in international courts and tribunals as well as African domestic courts. The Database would reveal existing gaps in legislation and policies and help researchers, as well as policymakers, formulate stronger policies on strengthening legal protection for male victims of sexual violence in conflict and peace situations.
We strongly believe that sufficient resources concerning sexual violence against males will enlighten the international community and allow the stereotypical ideologies as well as the silence surrounding rape of men and other forms of sexual violence to be broken. It would also further unveil the strategies of perpetrators, encourage testimonials and reports, as well as attract more support towards victims.
RDP also aims to provide an evidentiary value of our work by publishing testimonies of male victims of sexual violence. CAJPHR has and is currently collecting testimonies of survivors of sexual violence against males. Some testimonies have already been uploaded on our website and are accessible to all. In pursuing this project, victims are given due regard to be anonymous in their testimonies. Victims may also directly participate through interactive skype at our events and conferences – such testimonies of which enables other survivors to gather the courage to speak up and learn survival techniques.
Research has shown that sexual violence against men and boys is primarily underreported, infrequently discussed, insufficiently researched, and inadequately documented. In many domestic jurisdictions, the gender-specific definition of rape remains in existence in line with archaic assumptions, prejudices, and stereotypes surrounding sexual violence in general and sexual violence against the male gender in particular. While some institutions, courts, and tribunals seem to have progressed or developed in terms of statutory provisions governing male sexual violence in the international law realm, there appears to be an apparent gap in practice in terms of uniform applicability.
Currently, international criminal law lacks judicial precedence on male sexual violence, and responses of International Courts/Tribunals on the subject are divergent.
CAJPHR finds it imperative to have sufficient and accessible literature. Forms include, but are not limited to, written articles, videos, poetry, reports, testimonies, surveys, interviews, vox populi, artistic drawing, graphic designs as well as books to encourage research and constant publication on social media and in print.