Madonna’s Raising Malawi Trust has finally applied to the country’s Non-Governmental Organisations (NGO) Board for registration. This is according to the Board chairperson, Emily Banda.
The development comes barely four weeks after the Board accused the mega-rich United States pop star of carrying out programmes under an organisation that is not recognised by Malawi.
Banda points out that, “Raising Malawi is, indeed, not registered with the Board and Section 20 of the NGO Act clearly stipulates that every NGO established or operating in Malawi shall register with the Board. In this case, Raising Malawi has three structures within the country namely: Raising Malawi Incorporation, which is International; Raising Malawi Trust, which is local; and Raising Malawi Girls Academy. All these entities have never registered with the Board."
To read the article titled, “Raising Mw applies for NGO accreditation,” click here.Source:Blantyre Newspapers Limited Times
Some civil society leaders in Malawi are speaking against a by-law introduced by traditional authority (TA) Chitera of Chiradzulu district barring her subjects under the age of 21 from getting married.
According to Chitera, the by-law is a form of reducing increased cases of early marriage in her area, a situation she says has previously led to the highest levels of school dropout among girls.
Early marriage - in particular marriages of under-15s - is more common in rural communities because rural households tend to have more entrenched traditional attitudes and customs, are less affected by external influences, and have fewer livelihood options for young women.
To read the article titled, “Malawi civil society leaders fault TA Chitera on by-laws against early marriages,” click here.Source:Nyasa Times
For 11 years, the international NGO, Mary’s Meals, has been feeding young learners in 421 selected primary schools in Malawi.
The organisation, which puts the number of beneficiaries at 593 000, states that each day they usually receive hot porridge made from maize flour mixed with salt and sugar.
It argues the aim of the feeding scheme is to increase enrolment for children who fail to attend classes because of hunger in their families.
However, the organisation’s communications and child protection officer, Chloe Melrose, points out that, “The challenge," she says, "is that a lot of schools especially in the urban areas struggle to access firewood because in a lot of townships within the cities there is no space for trees, there is no space for vegetation.”
To read the article titled, “Malawi primary school plants trees to sustain school feeding programme,” click here.Source:Voice of America
Malawi's reputation for improving food production could be in peril, according to Lameck Masina’s analysis published on the All Africa website
Masina states that after years developing its capacity to feed itself, Malawi has recently suffered a series of devastating natural setbacks with thousands currently facing food shortages.
He says besides last year's erratic rains and drought which reduced the maize harvest (the country's staple) by seven percent, the Southern African country has recently been hit by severe floods, displacing an estimated 10 000 households across ten districts.
To read the article titled, “Washed away - Food security hit by natural disasters,” click here.Source:All Africa
My Village Organisation (MVO), a Malawian NGO, has launched a ‘Bring your Wife-PMTCT’ campaign that aim to engage men participation in the access and utilisation of prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) services.
Speaking during the launch at Bolero, the Tumbuka paramount chief called on men to accompany their pregnant spouses in order to get correct information on PMTCT and other antenatal services.
The chief challenged the men to rise above cultural and social norms and gender stereotypes which entails that taking care of the pregnancy and raising children is a woman’s activity.
The campaign runs for a period of one year targets to reach out to 500 couples.
To read the article titled, “Malawi NGO encourages male involvement in prevention of mother-to-child HIV transmission,” click here.Source:Nyasa Times
Malawi’s Council for Non-Governmental Organisations in Malawi (CONGOMA) has joined the Consumers’ Association of Malawi (CAMA) to mobilise people to stage a mass consumer protest in January 2013.
CONGOMA board chairperson, Voice Mhone, says that the council is concerned about the continued devaluation of the kwacha which, he says, due to the floatation of the currency, is currently estimated to be at 101 percent from the 49 percent announced in May this year.
Mhone maintains that although his organisation advocated the devaluation of the kwacha, the council is not playing double standards, arguing the effects of the floatation of the kwacha have become unbearable to Malawians while government ‘adamantly keeps going on money-spinning errands’.
To read the article titled, “Civil society group backs January protests by consumers association,” click here.Source:The Standard
A decision by Malawi authorities to suspend anti-homosexual laws in the predominantly religious Southern African nation of 13 million is sparking heated debate.
While human rights activists applaud the announcement, some socially conservative Malawians feel their government should not be copycatting everything from Western countries or nodding to whatever donors demand.
Undule Mwakasungura, executive director of the Centre for Human Rights and Rehabilitation (CHRR), thinks that the decriminalisation is long overdue. “People need to understand that homosexuality is not going away,” he argues.
To read the article titled, “Suspension of anti-gay laws in Malawi draws mixed reactions,” click here.Source:Radio Netherlands Worldwide
The Human Rights Watch (HRW) says the Malawian government’s decision to suspend enforcement of laws that criminalise consensual same-sex conduct is the right thing to do, and should serve as an inspiration to other countries that criminalise homosexuality.
“Malawi has taken a bold step forward, putting respect for its own constitutional guarantees of equality front and centre,” explains Tiseke Kasambala, Africa advocacy director at HRW.
Kasambala argues that no one should go to prison for consensual relations with someone of the same sex, adding that Malawi’s decision has given hope to thousands who risk prison sentences under such laws.
The comments come after the country’s justice minister, Ralph Kasambara, announced a moratorium on arrests on the basis of the country’s colonial-era sodomy laws.
To read the article titled, “Courageous move to suspend anti-gay laws,” click here.Source:Human Rights Watch
A recent study by Women in Politics and Decision Making Permanent Committee (WPDM PC) has revealed that women representation in decision-making positions is very low in many institutions in Malawi.
Chairperson of WPDM PC, which is under Gender Coordination Network (GCN), Emmie Chanika, disclosed that some institutions are not aware of gender instruments that seek to promote women’s representations and participation in decision-making.
Chanika explains that the report had singled out minimal qualifications held by women in the country which bars them from competing with their male counterpart, more drop-outs of females from colleges and some jobs like construction as some of the reasons behind unsuccessful of the campaign.
To read the article titled, “Malawi far to achieve 50/50 campaign by 2015- CSOs,” click here.Source:Nyasa Times
Malawi President, Joyce Banda, whose country is battling starvation due to many years of bad financial management, is showing her determination to 'lead from the front' by voluntarily cutting her own salary by 30 percent.
By slashing her salary, Banda, who believes in sharing their pain, inherited a mess in April when she was propelled into office after the sudden death of her predecessor, Bingu wa Mutharika.
Her salary is R480 000 a year and when it declines to R340 000, it will be equivalent to what a mid-level South African civil servant earns.
To read the article titled, “Malawi president takes pay cut 'in solidarity with the poor',” click here.Source:Sowetan Live