Katsonga brothers tough on gays: Malawi presidential debate

Presidential candidates of People’s Progressive Movement (PPM) Mark Katsonga and his biological brother Davis Chester Katsonga of Chipani Cha Pfuko on Tuesday had no kind words for homosexuals during Malawi’s second presidential debate in Lilongwe.

Under the country’s laws, men face up to 14 years in jail and women a maximum of five years for homosexual offences.

But the High Court is hearing a petition by a leading rights group backed by Malawi Law Society seeking to obtain the review of jail sentences of three gays and to overturn laws that criminalise homosexuality.

Mark Katsonga: No gays
Mark Katsonga: No gays
Davis Katsonga: No to same-sex relationships
Davis Katsonga: No to same-sex relationships

Speaking during the presidential debate on the topic of children welfare, Katsonga brothers who always agree to disagree on political issues, spoke in agreement on anti-homosexuality.

Davies Katsonga, former Speaker of Parliament, said Malawians are being influenced by bad external forces and deplored homosexuality as one of such immoral foreign influence.

“We need to put this to a stop,” said Katsonga.

His brother, a PPM president also spoke against homosexuality.

The moderator had asked the candidates to debate on a subject of Malawi children facing a lot of challenges, being trafficked and employed to work in terrible conditions.

“We need stiff penalties so that child traffickers and those employing children are punished,” suggested Mark Katsonga.

Adding his voice to the subject, Petra president Kamuzu Chibambo said the gay issue will lead to more children being abused.

“Therefore, we do not support the gay issue,” he said emphatically.

Chibambo said if elected to govern, Petra shall speed up the passing of the Trafficking Persons Bill “so that people are protected. Registration of children is also key.”

United Democratic Front (UDF) president Atupele Muluzi said his government “will put in place measures to protect children, this will be done at district level. Will strengthen the law to cut child labour.”

Hellen Singh of United Independence Party (UIP) called on the traditional chiefs to nurture children on culture and values.

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