I have said over and over again those men who feel that women are ill-treating those in their matrimonial homes should report their cases so that journalists can write about them.
But alas, not many are willing to do so lest they be viewed as weak and feeble. Yes, there are so many men suffering in silence, but can we guess whether that is happening if they keep that information to themselves?
Some columnist early this week accused me and two women journalists from other media houses of always writing in defence of women.
The reality is that I write about issues that fall within my reality.
I have done a lot of intervention in as far as domestic violence, rape and human rights issues, hence I write about these matters from a very informed position.
I also spend a lot of time researching on the Internet and attend various local meetings and conferences that touch on these subjects, something I thoroughly enjoy doing. I have absolutely no apologies to make in that respect. That is a choice I made and I am happywith it.
Should I keep quiet when I see little girls being raped whilst perpetrators are let off scot-free? Should I keep quiet when I see vulnerable people being physically abused by their spouses? And should I keep quiet when workers’ rights are being violated left right and centre? No ways!
Never will I keep quiet because such ills should be exposed for society to vividly realise the wickedness of the world we live in.
I choose to write about women because of their powerless position that exposes them to so many difficult situations.
Let’s take this scenario: A woman married her long-time partner and they both have three children. The woman had her own undeveloped property where she built a four-roomed temporary shelter.
She sold that property, bought yet another one and built a bigger house. That house was sold and she bought a bigger house in Westgate.
But when the couple decided to buy a house in some posh Harare suburb, the husband underhandedly went to buy the property and put it in his name, as the sole owner of house.
This property was bought with proceeds from sales of properties mentioned above. The husband was employed in the industrial area earning peanuts while the wife was employed in a multinational company that also deals with real estate.
But the husband now wants a divorce because he has found a new woman who apparently now has a baby. He is demanding a 50% share of the incomplete property.
What would you do if that was your mother, sister or daughter being fleeced off what she worked for? If that is not greediness on the part of the husband then what is it? And should I keep quiet when a sister is in dire straits?
This woman came to my workplace in tears. She looks rugged, stressed and has lost weight because divorce cases require a lot of money as lawyers demand so much.
She is unfortunately unemployed and yet her estranged husband is running a very successful business in the city centre and can afford legal fees.
Children are not being catered for adequately and he is seeking reduction of monthly maintenance from $50 per child to less than $15.
She has been threatened with death and she has not made a report to the police. The man has instead made several reports, which are false and charges against her were dropped.
So desperate are some spouses that they will invent stories to paint a partner because they have found new love. Why can’t he leave the wife and children and move on with the new woman in his life?
I have respect for men who leave their spouses and children in the matrimonial home and go off and live with their concubines.
One man I know in my neighbourhood did that and he sends a car to pick up his children to go to school, buys groceries and sends a handsome amount to his wife as monthly maintenance.
The couple has not formally divorced. That is what we call a gentleman.
I have absolutely no kind words for rapists, be they men or women. Abusers of women will not be spared as I will write about them until I drop dead.
Journalists belong to communities and societies where people have lost their morals and have an obligation to protect the vulnerable.
Serious journalists are mirrors of society and what we write about are certainly not half-truths. The issues are factual and for as long as these matters continue happening, we will expose them.
Research has concluded that women are the worst victims of all forms of abuse. Unless proven otherwise, the mentioned journalists will continue to pen until Zimbabwe becomes a safer place for women’s survival.
Why do men get so defensive and when stories on these topics are either published or documented? I just wonder.
Men should write about their issues for they understand them better. Perhaps Padare Men’s Forum on Gender should start mobilising male journalists to start activism in that area.
However, the honest truth is that males are the majority perpetrators of violence that sometimes result in death, injuries and disability.