Government embarks on Ndiulula campaign

Lilongwe: Government through the Ministry of Gender, Children, Disability and Social Welfare has embarked on Ndiulula (Won’t be silent) campaign aimed at breaking the silence of Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) in the country.

Minister of Responsible, Cecilia Chazama made the remarks on Wednesday during a Press Briefing held under theme End gender based violence in the world of work and tertiary institution at Central Office of Information (COI) in Lilongwe.

She said the campaign is underpinned by global objectives on descent work and national commitments on gender equality and rights of women.

The initiative work towards building individual and collective voice of women, girls and their different allies to break the longstanding culture of fear, silence and normalization of violence especially sexual harassment in various working places, Chazama explained.

The Minister pointed out that although both men and women experience violence, harassment, unequal status and power relations, women and girls are more vulnerable in both formal and informal places of work.

UN Women Country Representative to Malawi, Clara Anyangwe said they are working together with survivors to bring about the transformational change such as a multisector, comprehensive approach that includes review, formulations and implementation of laws to protect women and girls from violence.

UN support policy work to implement national strategies and action plans violence against women and girls, she pointed out.

Non-governmental Organization Gender Co-ordination Network (NGO-GCN) coordinator, Innocent Hauya said the projects would be a nationwide intervention, centered on building advocacy for free expression, capacity building of survivors and duty bearers and other stakeholders.

It will encompass the development of online content for digital or social media advocacy, key informant interface meetings focus group discussion with survivors, sensitization campaigns and development of IEC materials, he added.

Action Aid Malawi Representative, Tiwonge Simkonda said the campaign has been designed to achieve an equitable and conducive world of work in which violence against women and girls is not tolerated and accepted in Malawi.

According to World Health Organization (WHO), 818 million women globally which consists 35 per cent of them are above the age of 15 experiences sexual or physical violence in variance places such as home, communities and workplaces.

The project will be supported by government through the Ministry, United Nations (UN), Development Partners, Private Sectors, Civil Society Organization (CSOs) and Activists among others.

2015 demographic health survey in the country highlighted that 41 per cent of women aged 15 to 49 experience either physical or sexual violence.

On the contrary, 96 per cent of gender based violence incidences are perpetrated by men.

Source: Malawi News Agency MANA