Minister of Civic Education and National Unity, Timothy Mtambo, on Friday engaged with the Rastafarian community at their gathering site in Area 47, Lilongwe where they urged government to have policies that remove discrimination.
Mtambo’s meeting with the Rastas comes in as part of his initiative of meeting community and religious leaders ahead of the launch of his ministry’s the civic education national policy.
The Rastas took time to tell the minister of their concerns and what they expected the new Tonse Alliance led government to do for them.
During the interface, they complained of the problems with the education system , saying Ministry of Education were still denying children with dreadlocks access to classes in government schools.
They asked government to ” allow all children of Rastafarian religion who have dreadlocks, enroll into public schools.”
Rastas pointed out that there is a constitutional right to education for all despite one’s beliefs, according to Section 25 and Section 13 of the Republican Constitution.
They also expressed their disappointment with government appointments so far as nobody from the Rasta community has been appointed.
“Government is not remembering us, none from our community has been given any government role, not even as a board member on the Cannabis board. Our religion is also not being fully recognized,” highlighted Elder Galawanda, one of the leaders of the community
On the Rasta religion, the group expressed their concern over the current composition of the Public Affairs Committee which does not have a representative of the Rastafarian community
The Minister in his remarks said there are a lot of things that other Malawians can learn from the Rasta community such as the promotion of peace .
“Rastas are peaceful people, rarely do you hear a rasta fighting somebody. All they strive for is tolerance and promotion of peace, one love and unity, an important catalyst in my ministry effort to promote peace and unity in the country,” said mtambo.
He then assured the community that the Tonse government is pushing for an open and inclusive government and that the concerns that they have raised have been noted and government will work on them.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :