A rude awakening awaits polygamists, incestuous individuals and early marriage advocates following resolutions and by-laws passed on Friday by Ntchisi District Youth Parliament.
After four days of deliberations, the sitting organised by Quadria Muslim Association of Malawi (QMAM), petitioned the district council to raise the matters with the district’s parliamentarians (MPs), councillors and traditional leaders.
Speaker of Ntchisi District Youth Parliament Esau Matafale said they deliberated on problems youths in the district face, dropping out of school, low uptake of sexual reproductive health services and unemployment.
“We came up with 18 resolutions and by-laws that will be circulated to all traditional leaders,” he said, adding that the assembly expected the district council, MPs, councillors and traditional leaders to popularise the resolutions and make sure they are implemented.
He said the session, which mainly focused on youth reproductive health rights, agreed among others, to impose a K50 000 fine on parents who force their children into marriage.
“Government must increase its annual budget allocation to the education sector, provide qualified teachers and desist from unnecessary curriculum changes,” said Matafale while discouraging fellow youths from rioting and breaking school property.
QMAM executive director Saiti Jambo said the youth will present the petition to the National Assembly during the next parliamentary sitting so that some of the issues raised can be scaled up to national level.
The district’s first ever youth Parliament, organised with financial assistance from the German Development Bank (KfW) through the Norwegian Church Aid (NCA) under the Strengthening Public-Private Partnership in Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR)-N’zatonse Project, resolved to mete stiff punishment to perpetrators of crimes that undermine development of the youth in the district