22 February 2018
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Tuesday, 28 November 2017 05:34

Political parties urged to open space for women

Written by  Synd Kalimbuka
A woman parliamentary candidate campaigns - File Photo A woman parliamentary candidate campaigns - File Photo

Zomba, November 27, 2017: As the country gears up for 2019 tripartite elections, a women’s rights group-Women Legal Resource Centre (WOLREC) has urged political parties to create space for women in the ranks and file of their party structures.

The sentiments were made during orientation of women aspiring candidates for 2019 elections drawn from five political parties in Zomba. The meeting was organized under the WOLREC’s Women Empowerment for Leadership Project in Zomba.

Speaking an interview with Malawi News Agency (MANA), the project’s coordinator, Irene Tisungane Ntonga, said it was high time political parties adhered to gender equality principles to ensure that women are given space in decision making positions.

“For instance in primary elections, political parties deliberately create an atmosphere that favours men,” she observed, adding that women who do not have the financial muscle are voted out.

Ntonga therefore called on aspiring women candidates to portray good behaviour and communication skills for them to remain in touch with the electorate.

In his remarks, Malawi Congress Party district chairperson for Zomba, Wins Bwanali, admitted that women have been sidelined for so long and said the meeting would help parties to level the playing field during political party elections.

“As a party, we appreciate that women have potential too. And we are doing everything possible to accommodate them in the party structures,” said Bwanali.

His counterpart, DPP District governor, Stenala Stimma, said the party would hold a meeting at district level to see how to implement the issues raised during the meeting.

WOLREC invited all aspiring women from each ward who want to contest as ward councilors in 2019 elections to encourage them to start their preparations earlier

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