Government delaying to pass bill that protects the elderly

The Malawi Network for Older Persons Organisation (MANEPO) has expressed disappointment with government’s delay to present a bill to parliament that could help protect elderly people in the country, if passed into law.

The organisation says two years have passed since the bill was drafted, a situation that is so worrisome.

Executive Director for MANEPO, Andrew Kavala, told Nyasa Times that while government has taken special interest in passing other bills into laws, the one concerning the elderly is taking ages to be considered.

“We are wondering why government is taking so long to pass the bill concerning elderly persons and yet some other bills have been taken to parliament. Perhaps the Ministry of Justice can tell Malawians what is actually happening. It is two years now since the bill was drafted,” lamented Kavala.

Public Relations Officer in the Ministry of Gender, Social Welfare and Community Development, Fred Simwaka, told the local media that his ministry did its part and the Ministry of Justice is the one to finalise everything.

“When the bill is drafted, it is handed over to the Ministry of Justice and it is officials at that ministry who are responsible for taking it to parliament,” he said.

MANEPO says 8 elderly persons have been killed in the country from the month of June to date and 23 others have been victimised in various ways for falsely being accused of practising witchcraft.

When passed into law, the bill will not only protect the elderly from abuse and violence, but will also ensure that they are well taken care of.

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