A latest scandal involving a police commissioner and head of recruitment at the Malawi Police, Mr. Kaliza is very shocking, but not very surprising. It is alleged that Mr. Kaliza has been abusing his position by soliciting sex from several Police officers and offering them promotions in exchange. The report says that Mr. Kaliza had slept with 50 female police officers, I am sure the number is higher than that. While some people viewed it as a clear case of sexual harassment and abuse of power, some other people merely viewed it as a business deal which benefitted both parties.
Following this incident, a group of female police officers in the Malawi Police service saw this as a perfect opportunity to finally come out and shed more light on the kind of abuse that has been going on in the service. The female police officers have written a letter to Malawi Human Rights Commission complaining about sexual abuse in the police service. In their letter, they highlighted how promotions have been offered in exchange for sex. In the process a good number of police officers have been sidelined for choosing not to have sex with those in power. In the letter, they continued to express how some didn’t feel like they had a choice just that they had to surrender and give in to the demands.
Unfortunately, our country harbors several men like Mr. Kaliza who take advantage of the shortfalls in the systems, men who find comfort and opportunity in other people’s problems and challenges for instance, poverty, and toxic work environments. There are headmasters who abuse young girls from poor backgrounds, men in homes who abuse house maids knowing that the victims have no choice but to say yes and endure the abuse. In situations like those, the abuser and the sympathizers will be quick to say that, it was a deal and it was mutually beneficial without considering the fact that the abused didn’t feel like they had a choice at all considering their situation.
These bad apples exist anywhere, lurking behind the shortfalls in our systems, and they don't only include men, some women are also bad apples who exploit and abuse their positions! women who take advantage of their subordinates . Such kind of individuals if there were to be given an opportunity to change things, they would not because of what they benefit out of it.
Lets us create an environment at school, at work or just anywhere where victims will not have to die in silence, where victims will freely report such cases and get assisted.