Dust is refusing to settle on the move by some parliamentarians to table a law limiting the age of presidential aspirants to 80 with two organizations fighting for the rights of the elderly coming out strong against it.
The Association of Empowerment Initiative for Elderly and Children (EEC) has, today, issued a statement calling for parliament to desist from bringing the age limit bill into the house, describing it as discriminatory to senior citizens.
EEC statement comes barely a day after the Malawi Network of Elderly People Organization’s (MANEPO) described the proposed bill as retrogressive, ageism, constituting bias, discrimination, or bullying against individuals and groups based on age.
Daniel Jaferred, executive director of EEC, has since called on the stakeholders to initiate individual actions this month, such as campaigns to rally behind the elderly.
Jaferred said in a statement that, for instance, they can develop messages depicting support and help them live in a safer environment.
MANEPO, however, says it is closely monitoring the ongoing heated debate.
Parliament is expected to commence Budget meeting this Friday in Lilongwe with among the private business items, expected to deliberate on age limitation for the presidency in an election.
MANEPO further says, the proposed bill which among others seeks to exclude those aged 80 years and above among others, if tabled and passed into law, will infringe the democratic rights of all Malawians to participate in the democratic processes.
MANEPO has since called on authorities including the National Assembly to take constitutional amendments as a serious matter and should ordinarily seek to advance and protect the public rather than private interests.