Perceived Determinants of Domestic Violence and the Strategies for Its Prevention in Orlu Local Government Area of Imo State, South East Nigeria: A Cross-sectional Questionnaire-based Study

Domestic violence, also known as intimate partner violence (IPV), is an accepted norm in most Nigerian society. These communities generally hide this behaviour behind a culture of silence. Understanding the surrounding socio-cultural variables that underpin and promote this behaviour in patriarchal societies could aid in combating gender-based violence.

The goal of this study was to determine adults’ beliefs and attitudes about intimate partner violence, as well as to examine the trend in reported occurrences of domestic violence in Orlu, the study area, from 2013 to 2016.

Methods: A cross-sectional questionnaire-based study was done with 440 participants (220 males and women). The study also looked at documented DV/IPV events reported to the police in the study region between 2013 and 2016.

Disobedience or ‘talking back’ to the male spouse were key causes of domestic violence, according to all 440 (100%) respondents. Unemployment, 435 (98.9%), refusal to have sex, 419 (95.2%), and delay in serving meals, 380 (96.4%), alcoholism, 310 (62.5%), suspicion of adultery, 300 (68.2%), and conflict over funds, 275 (62.5%), were all significant contributory factors. According to police data, documented IPV incidences increased steadily from 79 percent in 2013 to 185 percent in 2016. Effective partner communication 440(100.0 percent) could help to reverse the trend. More people, 271 (61.6%), believe that victims should leave the relationship, while 251 (57.1%) believe that reporting DV/IPV instances to the authorities could be a deterrence. Conclusions: The majority of DV/IPV victims were female partners. Although police records suggest an increase in DV/IPV, no offenders have been charged. Criminalizing DV/IPV offences and ensuring that victims receive justice may be able to assist slow this growing trend.

Author(S) Details

Cynthia Oluchi Okorie
Public Health Department, University of Calabar, Calabar, Cross River State, Nigeria.

Philip Etabee Bassey
Public Health Department, University of Calabar, Calabar, Cross River State, Nigeria.

Nuria S. Nwachuku
Public Health Department, University of Calabar, Calabar, Cross River State, Nigeria.

Antor O. Ndep
Public Health Department, University of Calabar, Calabar, Cross River State, Nigeria and Enareh Public Health Consultancy, B4/19 MSQ, Calabar, Cross River State, Nigeria.

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