In the midst of the heavy rains and floods that devastated Malawi last year, we had an opportunity to conduct a Skype interview with Firebrand Minister of Gender and Justice Patricia Kaliati. Her energy and knowledge took us by surprise. She was very forthright with us and as she gets ready to embark on another trip to the US I thought we should share part of that interview with our audience.
MP: Honorable Minister we appreciate your taking time to talk to us while you are in you New York visiting the UN
Minister Kaliati: It is my honour and responsibility to speak to Malawians and The Malawi Press anywhere I am at. After all the Job that brings me here is on behalf of Malawi. We are here monitoring young Men and young Women to be Gender champions and the rest of Laws which you know already
MP: We understand you are here on Behalf of SADC and Malawi Can you elaborate?
Minister Kaliati: We are here monitoring young Men and young Women to be Gender champions and the rest of Laws which you know already
MP: Seems like you are covering a lot of Ground? How long are you going to be in New York?
Minister Kaliati: Oh Really, I will be back in Malawi on the 21st or 22rd
MP: So we have time to come and visit you?
Minister Kaliati: Yes Please you are most welcome to come, but Make sure you bring NGO’s for Post Floods recovery programmes:
MP: How has your trip been?
Minister Kaliati: The trip has been good, however the weather is not for ladies from Malawi
MP: Malawi has been ravaged by Heavy rains and Floods, We have lost lives and many people have been displaced, How long do you think it will take us to recover If at all?.
Minister Kaliati: On Gender perspective, as it might be a general question to the Ministry in-charge of the Recovery, However as I am a Minister of Gender I will address your question from the Gender Perspective which is my charge. We are being assisted by the United Nation and other well-wishers like Ilova. Individual people and assistance from world Vision international, Oxfam and addra. Also a lot of assistance from our partners and many people locally are also helping us.
MP: What Other things are being done?
Minister Kaliati: From the Gender perspective we are at a cluster. We are protecting women and Children from Gender violence. We need to take them back to safe problems. We managed to hire lawyers to defend their rights under the auspices of UNICEF. We are protecting young women from child marriages. We have arrested those that have committed offenses.
MP: How does Gender justice laws conflict with our traditions as compared to the West?
Minister Kaliati: You know there is also Gender based violence in the West.