The Parliamentary Women Caucus has said it wants the current women parliamentarians retained in 2019.
The sentiments were expressed by Second Deputy Speaker Esther Mcheka-Chilenje on Wednesday in Khumbize Chiponda’s Kasungu South East Constituency, which members of the caucus visited as part of its nationwide tour of constituencies represented by women.
Mcheka-Chilenje said the caucus would actually love to see an increase in the number of women MPs.
“We want many women in Parliament and for this to happen there is need for the current women MPs to retain their seats in 2019.
“This is why we are visiting constituencies of fellow women to encourage constituents to vote back these women MPs,” she said.
During the visit to Kasungu South East, the women parliamentarians said they were impressed by initiatives being implemented by an organisation called Good Neighbours, which is building infrastructures in the constituency.
According to Mcheka-Chilenje, Good Neighbours has a health centre, built staff houses, and classroom blocks and teachers houses at four schools, all with girl-friendly sanitary facilities.
“We want more of these NGOs, not those that ask for money from donors just to go into people’s pockets,” said Mcheka-Chilenje.
Good Neighbours branch manager Limbikani Nsamala said the organisation intends to reach out to as many districts as possible in the country.
“We showed these MPs what we are doing here in Kasungu South East in areas of health, education and sanitation. It is our intention to probably roll out to several other districts in the country,” said Nsamala.
Currently, the National Assembly has 32 women MPs.