Media asked to promote positive women ahead of elections

Blantyre: Women Empowerment for Leadership (WE4L) project on Friday called on the media to give a positive and inclusive approach on women aspirants and other issues concerning them ahead of the 2019 Tripartite Elections.

Chef Executive Officer for Women’s Legal Resource Centre (WORLEC), Maggie Kathewera Banda made the call during an engagement with media managers in Blantyre which was aimed at formulating a working approach to increase women visibility in the public eye.

The project aims at increasing the number of women in leadership position. So, to ensure the realization of this, the media is key for its ability to reach out to masses with well simplified messages, said Banda.

Banda observed that the current status quo of 22 percent of women in leadership positions needs to change after the 2019 elections.

Gender Equality Act of 2010 advocates for forty percent women representation in political and public administration and that is what we intend to achieve after next year’s election, Banda added.

WORLEC’s project coordinator, Tisungane Irene Ntonga said the project intends to build a pool of media correspondents from the districts where the project is being implemented in promoting the women’s agenda.

We would like to work with journalists from all the media houses in the project implementation districts of Zomba, Nsanje and Blantyre in bringing positivity through the media coverage of the women aspirants, said Ntonga.

Ntonga added that while the project is training the aspiring women councilors and parliamentarians in leadership, the media also needs to make deliberate efforts that would promote women.

The project’s media consultant, Dr. Jacob Jimu emphasized on the importance of women leadership in pushing a balanced national development agenda.

Women leaders champion women needs as compared to men hence their presence in the decision making forums may result in striking a developmental balance, Jimu said.

Recent electoral results from the latest Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) convention saw women only securing 10 out of the 50 National Executive Committee elected positions, signifying the magnitude of the work ahead of the 2019 elections.

WE4L is a five year program running from 2016 to 2020 managed by Hivos and being implemented in Zimbabwe, Zambia and Malawi.

Source: Malawi News Agency MANA