Government yet to roll out district children’s parliaments

Ministry of Gender, Community Development and Social Welfare says it is still consulting stakeholders including district councils to implement President Lazarus Chakwera’s directive of establishing children’s parliaments in all the districts in the country.

In November 2020, Chakwera directed the ministry to speed up rolling out children parliaments to ensure that children voices are heard and adopted into the national agenda.

The State President issued the directive when he hosted children from across the country in an interactive session to celebrate World Children’s Day at Kamuzu Palace in Lilongwe.

Speaking to Yoneco online, the responsible Minister, Patricia Kaliati, said her ministry is looking forward to implementing the initiative.

Kaliati said: “This is exactly what we are looking forward to implement and as of now we are engaging different stakeholders including district councils to make sure that children are given a platform to air out their issues.”

She further said her ministry will also be implementing the initiative in accordance with the Malawi Vision 2063.

However, the Minister did not disclose the time frame for the implementation of the initiative.

Commenting on the development, child rights activist, Lucky Mbewe, said due to the absence of such parliaments children are being denied an opportunity to communicate with policy makers.

However, he expressed doubt if government will manage to implement the initiative citing lack of political will.

“Hearing from our leaders dreaming of establishing parliaments in each and every district it’s a non-starter considering unaccomplished promises they have made before and this time around let’s not cheat the masses,” said Mbewe.

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