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Guest Impressions

Abuse Against Women and Children (Ulama)

Islam under no circumstance permits or condones the abuse of women and children. In reality, everyday of a Muslim's life should be a day of activism against the abuse of women and children.

Statistics
Women in South Africa are daily faced with domestic violence and rape. Domestic violence in the KZN community has drastically escalated to such an extent that 2 out of 4 Muslim women report abuse to counseling centers and others are referred by other NGO’s, CBO’s and FBO’s.
One report indicates that South Africa has the highest rate of women abuse in the world.

The rate of rape cases in South Africa is alarming and shocking - a woman is raped every 28 seconds.
This is a horrendous injustice perpetrated against women and must be stopped. Strict measures must be taken to immediately eradicate this crime.

This is just the tip of the iceberg.

Quotes from the Noble Quran
“Live with your wives on a footing of kindness and equality”
(Nisaa 4:19)
“And women have the same rights over men as men have over women in kindness and equity”
(Baqara 2:228)

Quotes from the Ahadith
Nabi (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) vehemently disapproved of men hitting their wives, and led by example by never hitting, in his entire life, any woman or child.  He (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) exhorted men thus saying, "Treat your women well and be kind to them, for they are your partners and committed helpers,"

At another instance Nabi (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said, "The strong man is not the one who can use the force of physical strength, but the one who controls his anger." (Bukhari)

Nabi (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) is reported to have stated: "(Is it not a shame that) one of you beats his wife like a slave and then sleeps with her at the end of the day."
(Riyadhus-Saliheen)


Domestic violence is viewed as a social problem with major implications for the family and the community. The escalating abuse of women and children can be seen on a daily basis. 

Many organizations report these phenomena as being more serious today than at any other time.  The high divorce rate and its impact on the children and family cannot be imagined. Many of the divorces are due to abuse in the marital home as well as second marriages.   Verbal and physical abuse seems to be the norm in many Muslim households, where respect, compassion and warmth are far removed from the everyday functioning of the family. Instead harsh works, physical beating and other forms of abuse replaces the basic values that fundamentally underline the healthy functioning of the family.   Large numbers of women experience such severe beatings that they become physically and mentally incapacitated.  Children are equally traumatized not knowing when they will be beaten up as well.

Please find below case studies number 1 – 4 for your perusal.  Kindly note that names have been changed but the case study is factual.

Case Studies 1
Rabia was forced to marry at the age of 19, whilst studying her first year of medicine.  Her husband (a doctor himself) promised that he would allow her to complete her studies.  All went well until one night about 6 months into the marriage, Rabia felt uneasy about a SMS that her husband had received, so she questioned him about it.  Rabia was beaten, kicked and punched so brutally that her mother could not recognize her.  She was hospitalized for 2 weeks.  Rabia returned home with a broken nose and fractured ribs and was promised by her husband that it would never happen again.  The cycle of abuse continued for many months later.  Today Rabia (23) moves around in a wheelchair, due to the constant blows to her head, she sustained injuries to her brain and spine.  Rabia lives with her parents.  She has been robbed of her life, her education and her dignity.

Case Studies 2
My name is Fathima and I have 4 children.  My husband who is a policeman has been abusing me for 12 years.  Now he sits at the iftaar table with a gun and if we make any noise he points the gun at us.  One day he will kill us and he means it.  I have nowhere to go he talks bad about me to all the families.  He is very charming, everyone believes him.


Case Studies 3
I am twelve years old and I only want to die.  I tried to kill myself twice but it did not work.  I cannot stand the way my father hits my mother over and over again.  She is weak and refuses to leave the house saying she loves my father.  He gives us no money for food or clothing.  From the age of 9 years my father and cousin have sexually abused me.  Both of them take drugs.  No one knows.  They will hurt my mother if I tell.  Recently my father raped me.  I am now 12 years old.  Could I be pregnant?  How do I get out of this situation, I can’t leave my mother and 6 year old sister.

Case Studies 4
I am a professional person.  My husband asked me to leave my job.  After my husband beats me up he apologizes and cries but two days after that he starts again.  Recently he beats the children with a belt and he says if I leave I will not get a penny.  I don’t want to leave; I want him to stop abusing me.  The last beating he broke my nose and refused to take me to the doctor.  Now he locks the door of the flat when he goes out.  Twice he did not return for 2 days and we were locked in the flat with little or no food.

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