Women anger at President Chakwera justified, must do the right things -Malawi paper

Protests organised  by the Women Manifesto Movement comprising  various women empowerment  civil society  organisations (CSOs), pressing for equal representation should not be taken lightly, an influential Malawian newspaper has said in an editorial comment.

Maggie Kathewera Banda led Friday’s protests in Blantyre, Malawi, and is executive director of a lobby group, Women’s Manifesto.(Lameck Masina/VOA)
Women’s rights supporters said it’s time for the new administration of President Lazarus Chakwera’s to start recognizing women. (Lameck Masina/VOA)
Chakwera endorsed Women Manifesto he received from Kathewera Banda

Women held street protests Friday and  accused President Lazarus Chakwera of failing to fulfill the Gender Equality Act which requires 60-40 representation of either men or women in public appointments.

At a news conference  marking his 100 days in office on Monday, President Chakwera said the low female representation is because he could not find well-qualified women to fill the cabinet posts.

Chakwera challenged women’s rights groups to provide him with candidates for top-level positions.

The Weekend Nation newspaper in its editorial comment said Chakwera’s remakrs “could not have come from the same man that promised change of a system that oppressed women.”

In the editorial, the paper said the anger, therefore at Chakwera, during the nationwide marches on Friday is “justified.”

Reads the editorial: “Women have a right to raise concerns about a system that oppresses them and does not respect the rule of law on equal representation.”

It said the Malawi women feel “let down” by Chakwera’s “insensitivity to gender equality.”

The paper said Chakwera must, therefore, do the right thing “by ensuring that there is equal representation in the new government.”

Nonetheless, the paper pointed out that, the fight, as one of the protesters on Friday put it, is not against Chakwera, but for the system to change.

“All what women want is a system  that promotes equal representation. Mr President, the law is clear, do the right thing,” concludes the paper.

Some analysts said Chakwera should be given more time to fulfill his promises because he has just clocked his first 100 days in office.

But feminist Ulemu Hanna Kanyongolo said the law is not negotiable.

“It’s never too soon to respect the law and it’s clear the qualified women are there,” Kanyongolo said. “So there is no excuse for him to violate the law. The law you don’t negotiate and he knew that before he took the oath of office.”

Meanwhile, Maggie Kathewera Banda who led Friday’s protests in Blantyre, and is executive director of a lobby group Women’s Manifesto,  has said she may take legal action should government fail to follow the Gender Equality Act.

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Dan
Dan
7 months ago

Malawi was held to ransom with your fellow woman for 9 months, why did you know cme out speifcally you women to force her to resign? Have all men been appointed to become board members? WHy are you not ashamed at the few numbers of your protest patronage? Think think and think

Anaconda Mfune
Anaconda Mfune
7 months ago

All these ladies are doing is just asking for something which is theirs based on the memorandum of understanding they signed with the Alliance the time they begged them to vote in their favour. This is why people are saying none of the promises made are going to be followed. I wouldn’t blame the ladies. Basically, it shows that all what was said was all lies. Such is what happens when you go into government empty with no strategy, for you end up grappling as if you have are in a dark confined room. Surprisingly, Chilima was in government less… Read more »

ERUTU
ERUTU
7 months ago

What the Women’s Manifesto lobby group is asking for is unworkable as even Britain has an under representation of women in government and other public entities.

Britain is a developed nation but is failing to fulfill this despite numerous calls all these years.

Let’s just forge ahead and develop our nation 🇲🇼 as these narrow-minded views will lead us to nowhere.

I understand one of these lobbying women refused a position in one of the public institutions giving a lame excuse of choosing to fight for women’s issues.

AWAY WITH GREED 🛌🇲🇼

graft
graft
7 months ago
Reply to  ERUTU

it’s the law basi just accept. it’s not Britain either

Leader of opposition
Leader of opposition
7 months ago

Azimai opusa ma banja akukanikani, mukulephera kupaka lipstick bho bho ndiye mungakhale mu board inu? Agalu musatinyase. Munali kuti mmene azimai a kwa msundwe anagwiriridwa? Mzimai anavulidwa maliseche ku Mangochi gender yanuyo inali kuti? Mrs Tambala anaphedwa ndiye mutinyase ndi kusasankhidwa mma board? Mr Maliseche wanu wakutumaniyo mumuuze ndi chitsiru . Ndalama kaya anamupasa uyu wamkulu maso Seodi, mumuuze akuti uzingodibwa ulele choncho munthu opanda nzeru. Ndinu anthu opepera kwambiri gender activism ya ku maliseche ? Mwandinyasa kwambiri. Munali kuti ma demo timapanga aja. Musazayerekezenso kuguba zopusa muzagendedwa

Kaisala
Kaisala
7 months ago

These women don’t think. MLS board has 20% women representation, check composition of HRDC. It’s laughable. They never supported Joyce Banda now they want support. This is rubbish at it’s best. Hypocrisy

Zio ine
Zio ine
7 months ago

Directors and PS in government should be interviewed and I am sure if this would be done more women would be appointed as PS or directors not the current arrangement of appointing political cronies to head ministries and departments.

James Banda
James Banda
7 months ago

What is Ulemu Kanyongolo saying? I hope this is true of a public University where she studied. Is there an equal representation of gender in terms of members of staff? it should be everywhere not only political appointments. Even kwa amene alemba nkani how many women journalists are there? During the elections case there were five judges and one woman.

Mwini muzi
7 months ago
Reply to  James Banda

All these positions that women are fighting for are filled in through appointments and not through the advertisement whereby all men and women are required to apply to go through a rigorous interview exercise.

Last edited 7 months ago by Mwini muzi
Jesta
Jesta
7 months ago
Reply to  James Banda

focus on the issue at hand. HE must do what is right

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