10 elderly persons killed in 6 months

Ten elderly persons were killed between January and June 2023 and there are fears that the figure could increase if authorities do not take corrective action.

Malawi Network of Older Persons Organization (MANEP) Executive Director, Andrew Kavala, raised the concerns in Lilongwe on Thursday during activities to commemorate this year’s World Elder Abuse Awareness Day.

The Minister of Gender, Community Development and Social Welfare, Jean Sendeza, graced the occasion as the Guest of Honour.

Kavala lamented that cases of abuse and violence targeting older persons continue to spike in both rural and urban settings, which confirms that elderly persons are not safe.

Sendeza–Government will not tolerate this abuse and violence against the elderly anymore–Photo by Watipaso Mzungu

He appealed to the ministry to find lasting solutions to the problem.

His sentiments were echoed by a responsible for the Community of Sant’ Egidio for Area 25 in Lilongwe, Edda Mtalika, who appealed to the members of Parliament to expedite the debate and enactment of the Older Persons Bill into law.

Mtalika said if passed into law, the bill will help in eliminating violence and abuse of elderly people as it spells out stiffer penalties on perpetrators.

In her remarks, Sendeza observed that abuse and violence against the elderly in Malawi has a woman’s face.

“It is an undeniable fact that Gender-Based Violence against the elderly is a common phenomenon, but we don’t tend to hear about itAs a matter of fact, it is globally estimated that women aged over 60 experience more discrimination, abuse, and violence than the younger generations. If you consider the cases I have highlighted, you will agree with me that there is a need for more awareness on violence against older persons,” she said.

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