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Perceptions of male partners towards intimate partner violence in the Gambia: A qualitative study

Joseph W. Jatta
Oyinkansola I. Lawal
Trusila A. Muroka
Ararso B. Olani
Baboucarr Jatta
Olufunmilayo I. Fawole
Oladosu A. Ojengbede


Intimate partner violence (IPV) is a form of Gender-based violence that is a public health problem. The health outcomes of IPV have cascading effects on the family’s financial, emotional, sexual, and physical wellbeing. Sub-Saharan Africa carries a significant burden of IPV. In The Gambia, domestic is prevalent, with more than 80% of the women believing that it is justified for a man to beat his wife. Men are the predominant perpetrators of IPV in the Gambia. The study employed a cross-sectional design using a qualitative approach utilizing phenomenology focused on the participants lived experiences. The study was conducted in Basse in the Upper River Region in The Gambia. The study purposefully sampled 26 respondents, all of whom were married. Semi- Structured in-depth interviews were administered to the respondents in Mandinka, Wolof and Serahuli to collect the study data. Both deductive and inductive approaches were used to develop the codebook and themes relevant to the study data. The participants expressed various ideas regarding IPV, with the general perspectives suggesting the causes, effects, and ultimate probable solutions to the phenomenon. The respondents interviewed believed that both women and men bared the responsibility of IPV. Varying connotations were placed on the individual’s responsibility towards perpetrating IPV with men seen as physically and financially violent compared to women. Solutions to the IPV problem were seen as both external and internal, with government intervention being offered up as a solution. The overall response in the study indicated that there was a general understanding of IPV and a need to educate both men and women of its dangers to the overall health. The finding of this study shows that further needed on a large scale to understand the dynamics of IPV in The Gambia. This will help in designing sustainable solutions to the IPV problem.

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eISSN: 1118-4841