Parading of woman naked condemned by Malawi govt, activist: ‘Sexual harassment’

The Ministry of Gender, Children, Disability and Social Welfare and human rights activist Habiba Osman have condemned the parading of a naked woman in the business district of Limbe in Blantyre and circulating the pictures on social media as an act of “sexual harassment.”

Ministry condemen this sexual harrasmsent as a police owman drags a naked woman away

The girl was reportedly caught stealing in a shop and stripped naked, She had to be taken away paraded in streets naked with a watchful eye of a police officer as some men abused her by touching her boobs.

Principal Secretary in Ministry of Gender, Children, Disability and Social Welfare Esmie Kainja said in a statement made available to Nyasa Times that the ministry is “deeply disturbed” by the images  which have gone viral on social media that expose the dignity of a woman in Limbe.

“What is troubling is the fact that the woman has a history of mental challenges and the public violation of the woman’s rights is the uncalled for glorification of violence against women,” the statement reads in part.

The ministry has also condemned   the conduct of the police officers who handled the case as “deeply concerning”.

It said even the individuals circulating the pictures are “participating in a criminal activity.” The Ministry therefore calls for action to be taken against the perpetrators of the “horrific and shocking crime” against the woman.

“Every Malawian has a right to dignity, privacy, security of their person and to be safe from any form of street justice. Any alleged criminal action is not supposed to be dealt with on the streets,” the statement reads.

Every Malawian has since been called to be vigilant and protect vulnerable young women and children at all times.

The public is being urged to report any strange and suspicious activities that violate the rights and wellbeing of women and girls so that the law must take its course and stiffer penalties are imposed on perpetrators.

Taking it to Facebook, Osman who is also human trafficking law expert pointed out that it is becoming a common trend in Malawi to circulate nude photos on social media and WhatsApp and expose pictures of women and young girls.

“Sadly, this is being done by those close to the girls and women without their consent. It is seriously a conversation that needs to be had, as we are now breeding a culture of porn hurting those persons we expose, “she wrote.

She said when people suspected of committing crime are caught, they should be handed to law enforcing officers and not undress them.

“I see this as a new wave of violence on social media and in public spaces in this country. Although violence in the private domain is now widely recognized as a human rights violation, violence against women and girls, especially sexual harassment in public spaces, remains a largely neglected issue, with few laws or policies in place to prevent and address it. We need to be vigilant as next it will be those close to us,” Osman said.

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Mlomwe original
Guest

Limbe police station yadzadza mbuli zokha zokha, umapeza the whole o/c ali busy kuponya teargas cha ma 5pm akuti vacab. Tsiku lina amaimisa magalimoto kumalemba timilandu ta boza ukawapasa k500.00 kukutaya. The whole o/c kumalimbana ndi mavenda mu Limbe tarven mmalo mowalamgiza ma juniors how to be professional when discharging their duties
The whole Limbe police station needs to be revamped
Tsiku lina a o/c kugwira vacab kwa kachere.

sazilala mbuno
Guest

misala olo no misala apa palakwika. mpolisi wa cimaiyuyo ndi citsilu like she supported the action, alibe umunthu zuoneka zamukonda. tisakuone m polisi iwe tikunyenya.

Bwande
Guest

Why didn’t the policewoman and the shopkeeper shield and protect the girl by keeping her in the shop until cloths were found to cover her? There is no way anyone can back the police, vendors and the shopkeeper. Women and girls need respect and dignity. The government should clamp down on these and all perpetrators of sexual violence.

nana
Guest

Bisalomu, don’t back the police, they failed in their duty. The policewoman should be punished and the vendors who took naked photos of the mentally retarded lady should be arrested. There is no excuse. Amuna akuonjeza with their obsession on the nakedness of women and girls. These vendors cannot get a proper woman except seeing naked photos of women and girls and sleeping with low-lifed prostitutes. Osamangobunyula bwanji.

bisalomu
Guest
The Issue here is that the woman is not in anyway a thief and she did not go into any shop to steal anything. The lady in question is Mentally retarded and she stays in Bangwe Township. The day this issue happened was that she was stripping herself naked for people tom see and in turn she was demanding payment of 100 Kwacha from each audience. Now this day after she had been paid by Vendors to strip naked the Vendors demanded more and she in turn requested for an additional 50 Kwacha from them and they paid. when she… Read more »
Mwakipiki
Guest

I now understand. I am one of the people who blamed this policewoman. But if what you Bisamlom has said is true, I withdraw my commemt.

Angoni
Guest

Since at this stage she is merely she ought to have been treated with dignity. The shop owner or staff responsible for stripping her naked should be arrested on suspicion of assault.
The police officer parading her should also be arrested on assault and aiding indecent exposure or at the very least being a woman herself she should be ashamed of her actions.

Mlomwe Original
Guest

ndikamanena kuti azimayi sakondana ndiye izi mwaziona nokha.wa Police wamkazi ali pompo kumazungulira ndi mzimayi mzake mtauni ali maliseche, wapolice ameneyi koma ali ndi nzeru? Bwana wake ndani ameneyu, ali police station iti ameneyu? kodi wapolice ameneyu anapita ku training?namga munamuphunzisa bwino lomwe za ntchito yake?nanga za women rights anauzidwa?nanga za psychology ameneyu munamuuza, nanga kwaoko kumene amachokera anavinidwa? ameneyutu apasidwe discipline sakukwanira pa upolice

benjones
Guest

Malawi land of shameless

Douglas Ndindi
Guest

….and the police officer showcasing the naked woman is also a woman. Come on madam police woman! You mean you don’t have the sense to realize that you are exposing yourself? Are you anatomically different from the woman you are exposing? When people see the nakedness of this mentally challenged woman, they see the nakedness of ALL women – be they politicians, Managing Directors, Principal Secretaries, Teachers, business women, prisoners, Policewomen etc. etc. The policewoman should have been in the forefront in shielding the naked woman for the sake of her own (policewoman’s) dignity. Shame!

Chikopa
Guest

Honest Malunga, please note that it is only the courts or some traditional authorities
who are empowered to declare someone guilty. It is different if the suspect was using force
such as armed robbery. Where were ladies who were supposed to cover her? Its like seeing
your sister, mother or daughter being abused. What did she steal? Who saw? Was she
running away? She must be compensated by shop owner and who ever took pictures as shown
above must give her something or be prosecuted by Magistrates – wina atengepo phunziro.

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