New United Nations Women (UN Women) Country Representative for Malawi Letty Chiwara has hailed the government for strides it is making in empowering women and ensuring that they are given decision-making positions.
She said this in Lilongwe yesterday when she joined Minister of Gender and Social Welfare Patricia Kaliati at a press briefing ahead of the joint meeting of gender ministers in the Southern African Development Community (Sadc).
Chiwara said, in recent years, Malawi has registered several successes in terms of women leadership and that there is a need to build on them to address the gender gap that exists in various sectors.
“Malawi has made tremendous strides in terms of gender equality. We see that the current leadership has prioritised women in so many senior positions and it has to be hailed for that…
“However, I must say that we still have a challenge ahead of us to start allocating resources in the right places and addressing gender gaps. That is the only way we can move forward,” Chiwara said.
On her part, Kaliati, who chairs the Sadc Gender Ministerial Block, said the meeting will deliberate on five thematic areas which include gender mainstreaming, regional multi-dimensional women’s economic empowerment programme, women in politics and decision making, and gender-based violence and signing of the Sadc Protocol on Gender and Development.
“There will be a lot of knowledge sharing; for example, we want to find ways of completely eradicating issues of GBV which, among other things, means we ensure that men also get to speak out on the issue.
“We have a number of programmes we are implementing to empower our women and we would like to do more and highlight the actions,” she said.
The joint Sadc gender ministers meeting starts today in Lilongwe and runs up to June 10 2022, when some guests from some of the 16 member-countries will participate virtually.