Embattled Malawi Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) director-general Aubrey Sumbuleta who is facing allegations of sexual coercion at the public broadcaster has been sent of forced leave by the Government.
The arrest comes hot on the heels of an inquest by Malawi Human Rights Commission (MHRC) into alleged sexual abuse tendencies by top managers at the parastatal
Minister of Information Gospel Kazako has confirmed that Sumbuleta has been sent on forced leave following complaints lodged by some members of staff at MBC. Kazako, who once worked at MBC, said the forced leave is meant to allow smooth investigations into the allegations of sexual misconduct.
“Yes, I can confirm Sumbuleta has been placed on leave until the investigation into the allegations has concluded,” said Kazako.
He recently appeared before MHRC on the same. Kazako said the force leave was appropriate “given the seriousness of the allegations” of sexual misconduct. Some female workers, including Catherine Kunje are believed to have lodged complaints to authorities, including the Ombudsman, Martha Chizuma.
The Coalition for the Empowerment of Women and Girls (CEWAG) executive director, Beatrice Mateyo said cases of sexual harassment are rampant especially in government offices including the recent allegations at MBC which need to be duly addressed.
She petitioned the office of the ombudsman to investigate the allegations/
“We want the Office of the Ombudsman to investigate the sexual misconduct allegations, so that at the end of the day the victims should receive justice and if the perpetrators are identified, they should be punished in accordance with the law,” explained Mateyo.
Mateyo said they have been assured by the Office of the Ombudsman that they will work together with Malawi Human Rights Resources Centre (MHRRC) to ensure that the issues are resolved accordingly.