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Malawi needs gender commission – Jessie Kabwila

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The Parliamentary Women Caucus has said there is need to set up a commission that would deal with gender issues in the country.

Committee chairperson, Jessie Kabwila, said Malawi needs to have a special commission in order to create a conducive environment for women.

Kabwila said women are in most cases isolated in society and, as a result, they are sidelined in decision-making positions.

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She also said the country should create a system that favours women.

“We need a commission of gender which will ensure that gender and women issues, including issues regarding children, are properly handled in the country. Women are mostly isolated in society, hence the need to have the commission,” she said.

Kabwila also said if vernacular languages are adopted in Parliament as a mode of communication, many disadvantaged women would be given a chance to be legislators.

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However, Malawi Human Rights Commission (MHRC) has contested Kabwila’s suggestion, observing that it is not necessary to have a separate gender commission as that would be a waste of public resources.

MHRC Chairperson, Justin Dzonzi, said the commission is empowered to deal with issues of gender.

“It is not necessary because MHRC already does that work. When Malawi was enacting the Gender Equality Act in 2013, the aim was to address such challenges. The more institutions you create, the more government wastes revenue. I am aware that other countries have more than one commission dealing with issues of gender but in Malawi we choose to have one commission,” Dzonzi said

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