2020 proved to be a year of trial and tribulation and Malawian women were not exempt from this. There were several movements and demonstrations that called for the rights of women to be heard. Examples include demonstrations against the low rates of women participation in politics and the dismal allocation of women in the Tonse Alliance parastatal board appointments. Other examples following this are the several demonstrations that took place against gender-based violence and the several rape cases that had been reported throughout the year. The effects of cyber-bullying were brought to light and victims were given an opportunity to speak about their pain and how words do in fact hurt as well as shed light on the lack of security measures that social media platforms provide.
However despite the grim situations that women were faced with, there were other events that took place to show that there were indeed advancements taking place amongst Malawian women. The solidarity displayed shows that action will be taken when parties responsible for women’s right do not hold themselves accountable. We have also seen strides in the sports world where Malawian women are being appreciated for their talents and proudly waving the Malawian flag. There have also been strides in organisations that are focused on bringing change to minority groups and giving them a platform to stand on so they have a fair opportunity to support themselves. There has been a rise in the number of conversations surrounding women empowerment and taking control of our bodies in order to control the slur and silence the shamers which in turn provides a sense of control over how women are treated in communities. Not forgetting the entrepreneurs that have taken a chance on themselves and have bravely started businesses and provided a sense of confidence to their peers.
We’re far from where we have to be in terms of equality however we are not where we used to be and that is a positive note to start the New Year on.