New revelations by Malawi24 indicate that the highest numbers of street beggars in all three cities of this country are from the Southern Region of Malawi.
After government through National Statics Office failed to provide recent official statistics, a sample street needs study conducted by this Publication has clearly showed Thyolo and Chikhwawa keep scoring top on women begging in the streets.
Some of the women have with them children who help them walk and tout for help in the famous phrase ‘njala bwana’ (We are hungry boss) said to passersby.
According to the fallout, one hundred women on the mosques and street roads, 43% of women in streets of Blantyre are from Thyolo Districts, whereas 40% are from the Sena belt.
Malawi24 has further established that the remaining percentage is from Mulanje and other surrounding districts.
Those who requested not to reveal their identity described street life marked by violence
In a study by Malawi24’s reporter in Mzuzu city, Thula Chisamba who interviewed 30 women in the streets of Mzuzu, about 15 of them are from Southern part of Malawi.
Most of them are living with disabilities and claimed to take begging as the sole means of survival.
Emily Jungwana, 73, who uses a wheel chair described life in the streets as ‘hell.’
Disappointingly, some are of good health and can be of productive to the country’s economy.
Speaking with this publication, Activist for Social Justice, Human Dignity, Democratic Civil & Political Rights Rafiq Hajat, said Malawi should expect more pressure in its both streets due to lack of economic opportunities.
Hajat said the Southern part of Malawi is characterized with overcrowding and congestion a reason people scramble for limited available resources.
He said the rise is due to failure by government to address the major issues concerning the society living standards.
Stated Hajat, “women have migrated from South up North on search of economic opportunities and favorable conditions of services. Some have been taken by trucks from Thyolo, Mulanje and Bvumbwe for casual labor. After being paid some have been dumped by their husbands. The only option for them is to beg on the streets of Mzuzu.”
The situation seems dire in terms of economic opportunities, the devaluing of kaacha and lack of economic opportunities.
Unluckily, every woman in situation of poverty is a threat of sexual harassment and HIV and Aids.
Meanwhile, Saint John of God claimed to be helping such people in the Northern part of Malawi.