The 50:50 Campaign Management Agency coordinator for Blantyre, Unandi Banda, has said they are optimistic that voters in the district will elect more female members of Parliament (MPs) in the May 21 Tripartite Elections.
He said this on Saturday at Ngumbe in Blantyre during an event Oxfam Malawi organised to drum up support for former Blantyre Rural East legislator Susan Ndalama (Democratic Progressive Party-DPP) who is seeking reelection.
“We are optimistic that come May 21, voters in Blantyre will elect not less than five female MPs. We are happy because our working relationship with stakeholders, including political parties, is good.This will help us achieve our goal,” he said.
Centre for Alternatives for Victimised Women and Children (Cavwoc) programmes manager Thokozani Chimasula, whose organisation has partnered Oxfam in implementing the 50-50 Elect Her Campaign to ensure that former MPs are reelected, urged voters in the constituency to elect women, saying they are more development-conscious.
“We are urging chiefs and all people to ensure that women, either candidates or voters, should not face political violence in the run-up to the elections.
“So far, the 50:50 Elect Her Campaign is progressing well. We have been to all constituencies that had female MPs in the recently dissolved Parliament, urging people to retain them because it is apparent that female legislators delivered during their tenure,” she said.
The number of female parliamentary candidates has soared from 268 in 2014 to 304 this year, with 114 of them running as independents, according to Malawi Electoral Commission.