Centre for Multiparty Democracy (CMD) has condemned political party leaders who demand sex from female aspirants in exchange for political positions saying this is brutality and contributes to low participation of women in politics.
CMD said this following amid revelations of sexual violence to women aspirants in Malawi’s political parties ahead of the 2019 tripartite elections.
Speaking during a meeting with political party leaders and women aspirants in Rumphi Monday, CMD Programs officer Sindrick Damala said women’s rights are being violated as some political party leaders force women aspirants to have sex with them in order to win primary elections or get favours.
“We have had issues where women aspirants have come open disclosing that they are being forced to have sex with political leaders like the district chairman, or Regional governor for them to win favours from the party.
“This act must stop that is why we are here today calling on all political parties to take action in bringing this evil act to an end, and let me say here such kind of acts have contributed to less women participating in politics,” Damala said.
Echoing Damala’s sentiments, aspirant for Henga-Phoka Ward Patricia Msiska acknowledged that sexual harassment in many political parties happen with a lot of women aspirants being victims of such acts.
Commenting on the issue, a representative of different political parties present on the meeting Moses Ndlovu of Alliance for Democracy (AFORD) said political parties are ready to put to an end acts of sexual harassment to women aspirants.
“Today all political parties have agreed not to entertain such acts, we have pledged a commitment statement today to bring to an end sexual harassment which is happening in our political parties, if anyone is found, the law will take its cost,” said Ndlovu.
Some of the political parties during the meeting were Malawi congress party (MCP), Alliance for Democracy (AFORD), People’s Party (PP) and Democratic Progressive party (DPP).