2024-07-12

Consortium wants political parties to increase women participation in politics

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Some organisations which comprises the Consortium of UN women, Oxafam, Centre For Multi- party Democracy (CMD) National Initiative for Civic Education (NICE) United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and NGO Gender Coordination Network want political parties to increase women’s participation in politics ahead of 2025 tripartite election.

The Consortium said this during high-level engagement with six political parties that have their representative in parliament on Friday in Lilongwe.

In his remarks, Centre for Mult- party Democracy (CMD) Programme Officer Dalitso Magelegele said they want to make sure that women are actively participating and their participation should increase saying they also looking for deliberate policies or codes of conduct in the political parties that can make more women participate.

Magelegele disclosed that political parties must remove the barriers that hinder women’s participation in politics.

“We are also looking at the primary election, you know the political parties they will going to have primary elections, we want them to have a level of playing field so that conducive environment for women to actively participate as we are going towards 2025 elections,” he said.

He also said that they will put initiatives in place to support women in terms of resources which is a challenge to the number of women.

On his part Malawi Human Rights Commission (MHRC) Commissioner Viwemi Chavula said they are focusing on issues to do with convention, leveling the playing field, and making sure that the playing field is leveled and women can participate without any challenges.

He further said primary elections produced a lot of challenges especially to do with venue, electoral college, and timing of those primaries hence working with political parties could help them to develop a code of conduct and mechanisms for women’s participation.

In his sentiment Alliance For Democracy Vice President Timothy Mtambo commended the consortium for coming up with such an initiative saying they have started at a good time.

Mtambo further said it’s so sad that women from a big part of the country’s population are bigger than men but when it comes to their participation in politics it is to the contrary.

He also said there is a need to capacitate women financially because they are also disadvantaged hence politics has become more expensive.

Mtambo added that as a country there is a need to push for deliberate measures reserving seats for women in parliament like other progressing countries do saying here in Malawi that the important bill was rejected.

In his remarks, Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) spokesperson Shadreck Namalomba said in most areas they have scored very well but there are certain areas that they need to do much more saying they scored very well in terms of getting identification of women by making sure that women have been supported getting to parliament and to councilors.

” as we speak now out of 45 female members of parliament DPP has got 22, so you can see that about 48 percent of women who are members of parliament are coming from DPP, ” he said

Namalomba further said they need to do much more because when they look at the numbers of women countrywide the percentage that participates in an election and the number of members of parliament that eventually win is the same.

He added that women are reluctant to join politics because of the stereotyped message of stereotype society saying stereotyping women is very bad so women must given a chance to participate and represent in politics.

The Consortium engaged six political parties namely: Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Alliance For Democracy (AFORD) United Democratic Party (UDF), Peoples Party (PP) United Transformation Movement (UTM), and Malawi Congress Party (MCP).

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