CSJ Malawi challenges dramatists to popularise safe motherhood policies and laws

CSJ Executive Director Brian Ligomeka making a presentation on the intersection of Drama, Safe Motherhood and Development


Actors and actresses have an important role to play in campaigning for social change and civic educating the public about policy and legal changes through mass media and drama, a human rights media organization has said.

Brian Ligomeka, Executive Director for the Centre for Solutions Journalism (CSJ) made the call at Liwonde in eastern Malawi district of Machinga on Thursday during training of the artists in professional acting and on safe motherhood.

“Malawi has several safe motherhood policies and laws. The government’s decision to set the marriage age at 18 is an issue of improving safe motherhood. The policy that all women should be delivering in health facilities is an issue of safe motherhood.

Actress Prisca Kunsida is one of the participants during the training

“The current national debate on the government’s decision to draft the Termination of Pregnancy Bill is another landmark for safe motherhood in Malawi,” Ligomeka said, explaining that when passed the law would contribute to the reduction of maternal deaths.

He explained that artists can best frame key messages about safe motherhood and sexual and reproductive health issues if they are knowledgeable in professional acting and have adequate knowledge and skills.

The core facilitators during the training, which is part of Pamoja Project are Theatre academic and practitioner Thokozani Kapiri, Legal Consultant Mateyu Sisya, Dr Francis Makiya and Ligomeka himself.

Theatre Academician and Practitioner Thokozani Kapiri making a presentation on Theatre for Development through role play

Besides training dramatists, CSJ is also producing Fupa Lokakamiza, a radio play broadcast on Times Radio every Thursday evening as part of the Pamoja Project.

Fupa Lokakamiza (The Forced Bone Breaks a Clay Pot) is a thrilling story of love, obstinacy, religion, betrayal, hope, sexual and reproductive health and rights.

Set at a college campus, the story pits the protagonist Linda, a devout Born-Again Student against the manipulative Mavuto in a game of faith, romance and temptation.

With support from a Senegalese NGO, the African Network of Health Education (RAES), the Centre for Solutions Journalism is implementing Pamoja Project alongside other organisations in Malawi.