Molefhe survived 8 gunshots and lived to tell her story

22nd November 2017
SURVIVOR: Malebogo Molefhe Source:The Midweek Sun

Malebogo Molefhe, a survivor of multiple shooting laments that it is not always easy for victims to come out and share their ordeal. She was shot eight (8) times by her army ex-boyfriend in 2009 in an incident that left her confined to the wheelchair due to complicated injuries to her spinal cord. Like any other brutal shooting survivor, reliving the moment brings tears to her eyes. Nevertheless, Molefhe has managed to gather herself up and is currently an active activist for Gender Based Violence against Women and Children. She uses her story to educate young women and boys who might be going through a similar situation or even worse and not knowing how to deal with it.

The Midweek Sun team met with the lion-hearted lady at the University of Botswana yesterday. A former basketball player, she has decided to use sport to spread the message about Gender Based Violence. The tournament has been named after her and will be held at UB Basketball courts on Saturday.The determined Molefhe said she will not rest because the time has come for Batswana to speak out about Gender based violence. “We have to ignite participation of the general public and provide ideal moments that will drive the nation through the violent behaviour,” she said. Molefhe is so passionate about speaking against violence in all of its forms saying it pains her to know that women are still being violated while others continue to go through daily brutalities. What is even more disheartening is that others find it hard to break away from the abuse and end up dying.

“I have spoken about the implications of violence in the home and seeking solutions to come out of them, however it is not enough, there is still need for education because Gender based violence has now taken to new levels which are very diabolical. “We read about women being killed in the most bizarre ways, it has elevated in a way that it is not to be condoned,” Molefhe lamented. The epidemic is even spreading to young kids in schools, she said, noting that it begins with bullying of other students and the behaviour later escalates to endangering their lives or worse, hurting small girls. “We want to raise awareness on kids and educate perpetrators as well. It is wrong to act in that way. However this situation affects all, it is not a one man show. We should come up with new interventions as to how we can do away with the behaviour.

”She strongly condemned individuals who feel women provoke men to hit them, saying the popular question she is often asked is why she is in a wheelchair and after answering, they go on to ask what she had done to him. “Nothing justifies violence or warrants anyone to take the life of another because they have done something to them, such talk is why the results are minimal and should not be encouraged,” Molefhe said.Reached for comment, a counsellor at Kagisano Society Women Shelter Gontse Luza confirmed that cases of abuse against women and children are currently on the rise. He said they mostly attend to cases ranging from child custody during divorce, infidelity, poor couple communication, extra marital affairs and rape. Luza said they shelter women and children who have no place to go or those whose lives might be in danger. He strongly condemned abuse of women and children saying there is no justification for hitting another person and women who are currently dependent on men, should not allow them to bully them in their relationships.He advised men that being the head of the family should not be mistaken as making a woman a punching bag.

He said there is need to teach young boys on anger management issues and advise them not to take advantage of women only because they (men) are physically stronger.Asked if they shelter young boys he said, “There is an age limit, we shelter those under 13 years because the shelter has many vulnerable women and we will not want to complicate matters by having abusive men in their midst,” Luza said.

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