Centre for Social Concern (CfSC) and Malawi Congress of Trade Unions (MCTU) have challenged parliamentarians to promote rights of women workers in the agriculture sector.
On Tuesday, the two organisations organised an engagement dinner in Lilongwe with parliamentary committees on Agriculture, Budget and Finance, and Social Welfare to seek mutual solutions to the challenges.
CfSC director James Ngahy told legislators that a study the two institutions carried out revealed that women in the sector are abused and paid less but they suffer in silence due to ignorance of their rights.
They have since called on Parliament to enact stiffer laws to punish abusers of defenceless women in the labour sector.
He said: “We have found that despite women working hard, they are not protected, they are sexually exploited and they cannot speak out because they are afraid of losing their jobs.”
On her part, MCTU director of worker’s education and membership Jessie Ching’oma said their studies looked at decent work deficits, particularly challenges that women face, with a mandate to ensure that workers’ rights are promoted and protected to mitigate inequality.
She said: “Our position is clear, we cannot ignore issues affecting over 50 percent of the population and these are women.”
The Agriculture Committee of Parliament deputy chairperson Ulemu Chilapondwa asked the organisations to help in formulating bills that conform to addressing existing gaps to do with women employment and any other issues.