LILONGWE—Malawi has no plans to legalize prostitution.
Speaking on behalf of government, Apoche Itimu, Public Relationship Officer (PRO) for the Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Affairs, said: “Government cannot allow legalising prostitution in the country.”
Itimu said this was despite increasing cases of new HIV infections among the sex workers.
According to a National Aids Commission (NAC) report of 2010, among the people who were infected with HIV and Aids in the country, 70.1 percent were women who were living on prostitution.
The report proposed legalising prostitution.
Itimu said prostitution was a personal choice. He however explained of an HIV bill that is being prepared and hoped that once passed into law would help reducing the rate of prostitution.
Dr. Drafta Khembo who is an HIV/ AIDS programs manager in the Department of public service management confirmed to Mana that 70.1 percent of sex workers were HIV positive.
“We really need serious action to curb the problem,” he said.
Florence Banda, 27, of Area 23, in Lilongwe says she went into prostitution to earn a living.
“My parents died when I was very young…When a friend told me about prostitution… that became…my life.
“When I came here in Lilongwe life became a little bit simple with the money that I make from my business,” said Banda.
---©2012 The Maravi Post. Reproduction authorised, with usual acknowledgment.