Undule calls for Malawi lockdown cushions, rights protection

Veteran rights campaigner  Undule Mwakasungula has  backed calls by human rights activists in the country that  government should put  measures to cushion the poor during the coronavirus  lockdown which comes into effect at the weekend.

Undule:  Human rights should be respected

He asked government and all concerned stakeholders to make sure that the rights of vulnerable groups are being protected during the lockdown period.

Mwakasungula said that rights of vulnerable groups such as eldery, people with disabilities,children among others are at threat with the lockdown especially if no special measures have been put in place.

For example, the former Center for Human Rights and Rehabilitation (CHRR) boss said government should make sure that the vulnerable groups will have access to food, portable water and health care during the lockdown period.

Mwakasungula further asked all the human rights bodies to put in place mechanism that will monitor and report gender base violence within 21-days of lockdown.

Apart from that, Mwakasungula said government should also advice the military and police to respect the rights of people when enforcing the lockdown order.

“Lockdown is very important when it comes to preventing the spread of Covid-19. However, within this period rights of vulnerable groups are violated. Therefore we urge gvernment to remind enforcing agencies that lockdown does not give a room to abuse its power.

“The law enforcers should use this period to gain trust from the public. Human rights bodies should monitor act of gender base violence,” reads part of the statement.

So far, 16 people have tested positive for COVID-19 in Malawi, mainly in the main cities of Blantyre and Lilongwe, the government said this week.

Meanwhile, Ministry of Finance, Economic Planning and Development is expected this Friday to announce measurers to help the poor cope with the lockdown.

Malawi is one of the poorest countries on the continent where more than half of the population live below the poverty threshold.


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2 years ago

People will only understand when they start dying. Remember how long it took for people to start abstaining and using condoms. We had funerals everyday and on every corner, that’s how Malawians learn. Let this be Mr minister, you lot have tried your part.Tikayamba kufa azibusa will support the initiative, so will community leaders and the opposition but for now this message will fall on def ears

2 years ago
Reply to  Mtondowodoka

People are supporting the measures but obviously not selective as it is now. Ministers are not accommodating other stakeholders on issues that affect them. Boardroom decision on this matter can not be trusted as again there are elections ahead. If I were them I would have called for a meeting including church leaders, opposition, Health experts, CSOs, chiefs and get their input. But alas, someone thinks he has all the powers hence this back and forth. For your information the government then hid HIVAIDS for a 5 good years. Again, if government was wise enough they would have closed boarders… Read more »

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