Minister of Agriculture Lobin Lowe has urged chiefs from Lilongwe District to take a lead in the fight against gender-based violence (GBV) in their communities.
The minister was speaking on Friday at Chiuzila Primary School ground in Senior Chief Tsabango when he launched 16 Days of Activism against GBV for the district.
He said chiefs can use their influence to change people’s mindset, especially against bad behaviours such as rape and defilement.
“We have seen chiefs influencing development and changing their communities so the same influence can bring mindset change against GBV,” said Lowe.
The campaign coincides with a wave of demonstrations against GBV, especially rape and defilement which have rocked the country in the past few months.
Different groups of people have been advocating for stiffer punishment for perpetrators of rape and defilement to scare away would-be rapists.
Senior Chief Tsabango agreed with the minister and pledged to take up the challenge and use their influence to bring sanity in their communities.
“The minister is right that we the chiefs hold the key to transformation and mindset change. We will take up the challenge and soon we will report good results,” said the traditional leader.
He said chiefs will be strict on enforcing the by-laws that they have introduced to sanitise their communities to evils of GBV.