Last Update 21:28
Saturday, 16 December 2017

Malawi orders arrest of man paid to have sex with children

AFP , Tuesday 26 Jul 2016
Malawi President
Peter Mutharika as he leaves the Malawi court in Lilongwe March 14, 2013(photo:Reuters)
Share/Bookmark
Views: 1150
Share/Bookmark
Views: 1150

Malawian President Peter Mutharika ordered the arrest Tuesday of a man paid to have sex with more than 100 adolescent girls as part of a traditional ritual marking their passage to womanhood.

The order was issued after the man from the southern district of Nsanje gave a media interview confessing to have slept with the girls for a fee of between four and seven dollars paid by each of their families.

"I order police to immediately arrest Mr Eric Aniva, investigate him and take him to court forthwith for defilement cases," Mutharika said in a statement.

This little-known local practice is performed in southern Malawi by men known as "hyenas" at the behest of a girl's parents after her first menstruation.

The ritual is believed to train girls to become good wives and to protect them from disease, or misfortune could fall on their families or their village.

But it is blamed for spreading AIDS.

In a BBC interview broadcast last week, Aniva confessed to being infected with HIV and sleeping with virgin girls without using protection.

Aniva said that the girls were as young as 12.

"All these girls find pleasure in having me as their 'hyena',' he said. "They actually are proud."

Mutharika said Aniva should "be investigated for exposing the young girls to contracting HIV and further be charged accordingly."

He also ordered an inquiry into the role of parents, saying "harmful cultural and traditional practices cannot be accepted."

The sexual cleansing ritual by a "hyena" is also performed on bereaved widows in Nsanje district to exorcise villages of evil spirits or to prevent another death occurring.

Aniva said a "hyena" was selected by the community based on good morals and that custom did not allow him to use condoms.

Malawi, which has one of the highest HIV infections in the world, criminalises sex with a person under the age of 16.

If found guilty of underage sex, Aniva could be imprisoned for life.

Short link:

 

Email
 
Name
 
Comment's
Title
 
Comment
Ahram Online welcomes readers' comments on all issues covered by the site, along with any criticisms and/or corrections. Readers are asked to limit their feedback to a maximum of 1000 characters (roughly 200 words). All comments/criticisms will, however, be subject to the following code
  • We will not publish comments which contain rude or abusive language, libelous statements, slander and personal attacks against any person/s.
  • We will not publish comments which contain racist remarks or any kind of racial or religious incitement against any group of people, in Egypt or outside it.
  • We welcome criticism of our reports and articles but we will not publish personal attacks, slander or fabrications directed against our reporters and contributing writers.
  • We reserve the right to correct, when at all possible, obvious errors in spelling and grammar. However, due to time and staffing constraints such corrections will not be made across the board or on a regular basis.
Latest

© 2010 Ahram Online.