14 August 2017

Malawi: Political Parties Urged to Fix Laws to Embrace Women

Mchinji — Political parties in the country have been urged to revise some of their party constitutions to allow women actively participate in party politics at all levels.

Governance, Gender, Justice and Development Centre (GGJDC), District Coordinator for Mchinji, Gerevasio Zulu said this Sunday during the awareness meeting held at the boma.

He said it was sad to note that district has no female ward councillor; a development he stressed is coming from unrevised political parties' constitutional laws which act as barrier to women who show interest to contest in various political positions.

The District Coordinator said some political parties in the country always favour the incumbents and sometimes they just impose candidates to represent the party during primaries without giving opportunity to women who have political ambition of taking leadership roles.

Zulu observed that women's low self esteem and lack of support from leaders such as chiefs are some of the factors hindering women's progression.

"Some chiefs do not fully support women in politics and urged women not to underrate themselves. As an organisation we are trying hard to motivate women to participate in the coming 2019 tripartite general elections," he assured them.

District Governor for the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), Alfred Kamacheza said the party has policies that help to create a supportive environment that values women's leadership.

He said apart from the policies, DPP has put some strategies aimed at enhancing participation of Women in Politics and public administration beyond 2019.

"DPP does not bar women from contesting for political seats. We are even calling those who are interested and have that ambition to participate and contest in the 2019 tripartite general elections to come forward and present themselves so that the party should regard them," Kamacheza explained.

He lamented the fact that despite women representing 52 percent of the country's population, they continue to be underrepresented at different levels within the society even at sub national where important decisions are made.

GGJDC is a nongovernmental organisation that fights for women's rights in Malawi and is doing its work using funds from Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs through HIVOS.


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