UDF Ndirande-Malabada MP Mkumba organises march against sexual violence

United Democrat Front (UDF) Member of Parliament for Ndirande Malabada, Ismail Rizzq Mkumba on Saturday joined the nationwide condemnation of the rising cases of sexual violence by organising a demonstration march in his constituency.

Mkumba (centre) and fellow marchers

The UDF legislator described these acts as heinous and must be condemned in strongly terms.

He joined the march from Goliyo to Malaysia  in the Malabada constituency to raise awareness of the violence against children and young women that is becoming rather rampant in Ndirande.

“Just two days earlier, two children were raped by a man from their own family,” he said. “So I thought it was a great stance by the youth to stand up and speak out against this sort of violence.

“I participated to portray that the government is not happy with this sort of practice and also to encourage children and the wider community to speak out and report any sort of violence against children and young women to the police.”

He urged parents to be vigilant to safeguard their children while at the same time asking women to be on their guard as they too are vulnerable.

“We can’t allow this trend to continue and we must all rise up so that this must stop.

“Those who are caught must be given stiffer punishment in order to deter others from this deplorable criminal conduct.”

He also said mothers must stop shielding their husbands who are defiling kids, especially their stepdaughters.

“Mothers must report their husbands if they discover they have raped their children. They shouldn’t suffer in silence simply to protect their marriages.

“It’s like we are living in dark ages. I fail to understand how a matured man would want to have sex with a 5-year-old — this is totally unacceptable and once caught must really be given stiff punishment by the courts,” he said.

Last month, Association of Women in Media (AWOME) — in conjunction with women civil rights activists as well as Speaker of Parliament, Catherine Gotani Hara, stormed the streets of Lilongwe, Blantyre and Mzuzu with a petition to demand the government to act on the increase cases of defilement.

Among others, the women in media are demanding the government to put tougher punishments on perpetrators of sexual violence so that they should be given stiffer sentences up to life imprisonment as prescribed in the Penal Code.

In an interview, the Speaker said as a woman, she was concerned with the situation, saying it was not fair that young girls should continue being raped.

She said, there is need for harmonisation of the laws between the Child Justice and the Penal Code so that even those that do not report the incidences should also face the law.

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