Malawi women, CSOs pen UN to strip Mutharika of HeforShe global champion

Coalition for the Empowerment of Women and Girls (CEWAG) and civil society organisations (CSOs) under the banner of Human Rights Defenders (HRD) have written United Nations (UN) to strip Malawin President Peter Mutharika the accolade of  the global champion for the HeforShe campaign accusing of “wilfully” undermining the gender equality agenda.

Mateyo (C) and Mtambo (L) wants President removed  the accolade of  the global champion for the HeforShe campaign

Mutharika was appointed in June along with nine other heads of State from Finland, Iceland, Indonesia, Ireland, Japan, Romania, Rwanda and Sweden, among others  who also displayed substantial commitment in advancing gender equality globally.

HeforShe initiative is  a solidarity   movement  for  gender  equality  that  engages  men and   boys  as  advocates and stakeholders to break the silence, raise their voices and take action for the achievement of gender equality.

But after a Cabinet reshuffle that has reduced women representation in the 20-member team from four to three and appointing   Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Southern Region governor Charles Mchacha, who has been slut-shaming women in public  as Deputy Minister of Homeland Security, has prompted for protests of CEWAG and HRD.

Beatrice Mateyo of CEWAG said they have observed  a  “troubling trend” in that the  President is not conducting himself in a manner which is contributing to the  goals of the HeforShe campaign.

“On behalf of Malawian Women, I am appalled by the conduct that has been shown by His Excellency, the President of The Republic of Malawi in His capacity as the HeforShe Champion of the UN Women.

“I expected that this accolade bestowed on Him would have translated into action where he would be at forefront of promoting gender equality in appointing women to positions, serving as a public champion for change and not just mere rhetoric,” Mateyo said in a statement made available to Nyasa Times.

Mateyo said there has been arginalization of women in all appointments to the Cabinet and other high-level positions in government and statutory bodies which have not been in line with the Gender Equality Act (2013) requirement of 60:40 representation.

“The least we expected from him as a seasoned legal mind and a guardian of the Malawian constitution was that he would abide by this legal requirement or supersede its expectations,” she said.

She also accused the President of remaining silent in the face of acts of violence that have been committed by the ruling DPP and “shockingly rewarding”  perpetrators of gender-based violence in the political space with a high-level position, notably the recent ministerial appointment of Mchacha “soon after publicly calling women ‘prostitutes’ just because they showed dissenting views.”

And HRD in a separate statement  addressed to the  Head of UN Women in New York also seen by Nyasa Times, said the  HeForShe guiding principles state that the leaders chosen are supposed to be at the forefront of gender equality, serving as public champions for change, and committing to concrete progress within their own countries but fauled Mutharika that he  has acted many times to the contrary.

The statement signed by Timothy Mtambo, Gift Trapence , Billy Mayaya and Mateyo, said  n 2016, only one woman was appointed as a commissioner of the Malawi Human Rights Commission from a total list of seven commissioners.

They have also cited  the  recent appointment of Cabinet Ministers on November  7 2018 as “a key indicator of his lack of commitments for He for She aspirations. “

The CSOs said despite Malawi having signed progressive human rights instruments on women’s rights and gender equality such as Convention on Elimination of All Forms Discrimination (CEDAW), African Protocol on Women’s Rights and SADC Protocol on Gender and Development, these international instruments are just on paper.

“Additionally, Malawi has progressive gender related provisions such as Section 11 of  Malawi’s  Gender Equality Act  (GEA)  which the President has  continuously disregarded despite calls from stakeholders and civil society,” the statement adds.

The activists said the issue of Gender Equality and inclusion of Women is a matter of principle at domestic level and international level.

“We are standing on matters of principle and to us these are non negotiable.”

They are calling for the immediate removal of the President of Malawi as the HeforShe Champion.

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Manyaka
Guest

Chicken headed CSO. There is no issue here. Is dropping anna kachikho an issue at all? Mxieww!

JKF
Guest
JKF

Are these still people still called CSOs? Not befitting them……….these are opposition mercenaries.

Naphiri
Guest

hahhaaa mwachita bwino pubwa akuonjeza kwambiri

Kaguta
Guest
Kaguta

So even Madam Mateyu has the temerity to talk about treating women with decency. If we could all remember that shameful placard she carried a couple of months ago referring to a woman’s private parts in the most vulgar of ways, we would all have realized that she has no moral grounding whatsoever to comment on this matter. This Trapence character masquerades as a gay person outside the country introducing himself/herself only as “Gift” with gayish gestures just to get money for his organization which he takes as a personal estate. I can go on and on about all the… Read more »

Wiseman
Guest
Wiseman

Kkkk koma these guys, chonsecho gulu lawoli sitimaonapo munthu wa Mayi, kapena mwina ndi ineyo amene sindimamuona mzimayi pa gululi?

NUNA
Guest
NUNA

I have never seen a woman accompanying these self-appointed activists. It’s a men’s group pretending to speak for us but still perpetuating a patriarchal system and culture.

pathfinder
Guest
pathfinder

I have always said that these so called CSOs led by Mtambo are a danger to our beloved nation.

Gama
Guest
Gama

Who has asked you to send this letter to the UN? FOTSEKI. Women are being abused everyday in their own houses by abusive men why don’t you stop that first.

Agenda Setting Theory
Guest
Agenda Setting Theory

Shameless

ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT
Guest
ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT

SOME OF THESE TITLES YOU RECEIVE JUST FOR THE SAKE OF RECEIVING 2 THAT YES YES BWANA
SYNDROME STARTING FROM THE TOP TO BOTTOM WITHOUT ASKING QS !!

Duli
Guest
Duli

Amangwetu, I asked my wife after reading this article on whether, as a one of the million Malawian women, she had sent these misguided element to speak for her. She emphatically said no. She also knows 8 million Malawian who have not sent these misguided fool’s. Get lost.

Dingase
Guest
Dingase

Osamakambirana nkhani ngati izi ndi akazi anu akakhala kubwezi baba. Simungapeze yankho lolondola

Mchacha the Terrorist
Guest
Mchacha the Terrorist

@ Duli
If it’s ok with you for someone to call your wife , sister , mother ,granny or aunt prostitutes it’s apparently stupid to think that it is ok with all of us. For God sake this president should tell mchacha to stop this nonsense . It’s simply stupid.

Vinjenje
Guest
Vinjenje

Mr Duli,that reasoning is very retrogressive,Stupid !

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