Mangochi Police Station recorded 98 child sexual abuse cases last year, 43 higher than the number of cases recorded in 2019.
Deputy Public Relations Officer for Mangochi Police Station Amina Tepani Daudi said a 2020 crime report shows a rise in sexual offences.
In 2019, only 55 cases of defilement were registered compared to 98 which were reported last year alone.
“Police findings have revealed that some deep-rooted cultural practices and beliefs remain among contributing factors of an upsurge in defilement cases,” she said.
She also noted that figures have increased despite efforts by the police and other stakeholders like Social Welfare, YONECO and World Vision which are aimed at keeping the girl child safe from all kinds of abuse.
Covid-19 has also been identified as another accelerator of defilement cases as children were not in school for a considerable period of time.
In the year 2019, a total of 2,172 criminal cases were recorded while in 2020 the station registered 2,280 cases,
Despite challenges in curbing other offences, the police successfully recovered some of stolen items, arrested criminals and many of them were given stiffer penalties in courts and are serving jail terms.
Out of the registered cases, 1,047 cases have been completed in court and the perpetrators are serving their jail terms.
Daudi said the police station is confident and geared to reduce crime as the convictions and imprisonments have played a big role in advocating against crime.
On road accidents, in 2019 Mangochi Police Station registered 185 road accidents and 55 people were reported dead while in the just ended year 69 people lost their lives out of 215 road accidents.
Meanwhile, the police have assured the public that they will continue with intensive day and night patrols, police visibility, border patrols and road safety awareness through the media especially community radios in the district.