Tougher legislation against sex offenders have been introduced in Malawi by the country’s
President Peter Mutharika in an effort to curb sex crimes, Nyasa Times reports.
The president claimed that his government would be taking strong action against so-called “hyenas”.
The president was reacting to a story that has been in was on BBC about Eric Aniva, an HIV positive “hyena”.
“Hyenas” are sexual predators who are paid to have sex with young girls as part of a “cleansing” practice.
Aniva admitted to having sex with over 100 young women and girls, to train the girls to become “good wives”.
President Mutharika ordered the drafting of tougher legislation to curb sex abuses in the country.
“I have instructed the Minister of Justice to start preparing a draft paper which will form a base of legistaion which will be presented before the cabinet, and then we will have new legislation governing some of these [cultural] practices,” said Mutharika.
Despite being harshly criticised over the arrest of Aniva, Mutharika has defended his decision, saying that it was a “wise” move to have the man arrested and investigated due to sexual misconduct on his part.
Edge Kanyongolo, a constitutional law expert at Chancellor College, has previously kicked against Mutharika’s ordering of Aniva’s arrest, claiming that the directive instituted an abuse of power.
He argued that the Malawian constitution did not give the president the right to interfere with the operations of independent agencies, such as the police.
Police in the country’s Nsanje district are currently on the hunt for nine other suspects, also believed to be “hyenas”, who are thought to be hiding out in caves.