By HELEN TARAWA
Cases of all forms of violence against women and children in PNG have never been followed through and resolved using proper processes, PNG Counselling and Consultation Service director Allan Tagai says.
Tagai who has been running counselling services for more than 15 years told The National that there were no paper trial and cases could not be traced, no history, data or statistics were collated, collected and compiled for authorities to see the magnitude of the seriousness of domestic violence or gender-based violence in PNG
“There is no body or authority to screen all procedures according to law and put some form of closure to the cases,” Tagai said.
“Currently, all agencies deal with the intervention part of the cases only but they do not have the capacity or capability to provide further assistance to the victims so the victims do not know where to go to pursue justice and bring their case to a closure
“There is also repetition and duplication.
“People are moving from agencies to agencies to seek help.
“Agencies are attending to all these cases but because there is no paper trail we are duplicating our reports.
“Many cases just go round and round the circle without being properly dealt with because there is no authority or centre that can oversee the handling of all cases and deal adequately with every case so it is managed and monitored from start to finish.”
Tagai said a system must be in place to handle cases to report intervention, investigation, arrests, court appearances and sentencing.
“This must be followed by all agencies dealing with domestic violence.”
It must be monitored by donor agencies to make sure that all cases are dealt with accordingly
“Magistrates must be allocated in all family courts or district courts to deal with domestic violence cases only, so turnaround time for all cases is only 48 hours minimum or 72 hours maximum,” Tagai said.
“This is to protect the victim (usually the woman) or whistle blower (neighbour).”
He called on all faith-based organisations or churches to assist with counselling and visitation within their neighbourhoods or parishes to help those who need help.
By HELEN TARAWA