By Madalitso Phiri, MEC Stringer
The 50- 50 campaign, which aimed at bringing equal representation of men and women in political leadership positions ahead of the forthcoming tripartite elections has flopped in Chitipa.
This has surprised the Catholic Commission for Peace and Justice under Karonga Diocese who were spearheading the campaign in the northern district of Malawi.
According to information gathered from Malawi Electoral Commission in the district, out of 84 aspirants who have presented their nomination papers there are only 14 women representing 20% from the total figure of 84 whereas 70 are men from all five Constituencies and ten Wards respectively.
Speaking in an interview with this reporter on 14th February, 2019, 50-50 campaign project officer for Karonga and Chitipa, Abel Malumbila said the figures (14) is disastrous outcome comparing with the number (26) of women they started inspiring last year.
“it’s a bit sad that a good number of women have withdrawn from the race, it is almost half have not presented their nominations. The main set back has been financial capabilities of these women.” Lamented Malumbila.
Malumbila further attributed to the political parties’ policy of not allowing those who failed during primaries not to stand as independent candidates saying it has also played negative role in pulling out of women towards general elections. The situation has mostly affected Chitipa Central Constituency where there is no single women representative.
Irene Chizumira who was defeated during primary elections by Clement Fukumele Mukumbwa for Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) on the ticket of Parliamentary seat for Chitipa Central Constituency is among women who have pulled out from the race after frustrations claiming the primaries were marred by several irregularities.
During the 2014 tripartite elections, out of 5 parliamentary seats, and 10 wards, Chitipa produced no female candidate.