Malawi Network for the Older Persons Organisation (MANEPO) and Women Lawyers Association (WLA) will on November 13 petition President Lazarus Chakwera at the Office of President and Cabinet at capitol hill in Lilongwe to present grievances over the rampant attacks and killings of the elderly. .
Statistics show that in 2020 alone, there have been over eight cases where older men and women were killed just on suspicion of practicing witchcraft despite Malawi’s Witchcraft Act of 1911 not recognising its existence; and stating it is an offence to accuse anyone of practising it.
This petition comes following the stoning of a woman to death in Dedza over allegations she was practicing witchcraft. Two people have since been arrested.
President Chakwera speaking in Parliament assured Malawians of rule of law saying these issues bring tears into his eyes and took time for a moment of silent in honour of the grandmother.
Speaking at press conference in Blantyre on Wednesday the two groups applauded Chakwera for his commitment to protect older persons in Parliament saying it was a step in the right direction and an assurance in ending atrocities against the elderly in the country but wanted stronger condemnation of the vice and deliberate action from the President’s office on safeguarding older persons.
Andrew Kavala, MANEPO Executive Director said one of the requests in their petition will be instituting a National Task Force to look at such cases and come up with a concrete roadmap to curb the malpractice, just as has been the case with other vulnerable groups like persons with albinism.
“Dialogue remains key to provide conducive environment for older women and men. Age catches up with all of us and let us not look at them now but those who are 60 above in full view we are also going to in the same situation,” he said. Read More and