Mob justice, immoral behaviour fuelling children’s suicide cases – says NGO

Mob justice, immoral behaviour fuelling children’s suicide cases – says NGO
Mob justice, immoral behaviour fuelling children’s suicide cases – says NGO

Africa-Press – Malawi. A non-government organisation has called on the general public to stop committing mob justice and other immoral behaviour in full view of children, saying mob justice and immoral behaviour by adults are key contributing factors to an increase in cases of suicide among children in Malawi.

This was disclosed on Saturday 4th March in Zomba during an orientation workshop which was organised by Lifeline Malawi, an organisation that has taken a step ahead in fighting mental health issues which have been characterised by the skyrocketing of suicide cases in the country.

Lifeline Malawi Deputy Director Henderson Mhango, said through the workshop they have learnt from participating stakeholders that one thing contributing to an increase in cases of suicide amongst children, is the trend of indulging in immoral behaviours in front of children.

Mhango said the most disturbing thing these days is that some adults commit suicide in presence of children, a development which he said makes children to view suicide as a better option when stressed.

“Community members are also reckless on handling issues of child protection, for example, community members can commit mob justice in front of children, which also affect their well being.

“So, such deaths plus many other mental health related deaths, can be prevented by increasing availability and accessibility of mental health services and information by training more mental health champions in the community to support the course which is our next,” said Mhango.

Cementing the calls was Malizani Phiri who is the Acting Executive Director of Youth For Change who said parents should among others immediately stop discussing marital challenges in presence of their children saying it affects their wellbeing.

While giving an example of a police officer who shot himself at his house in Blantyre last week, Phiri said apart from leaving mental scars in children, such incidents give kids a picture to regard suicide as the lasting solution to challenges.

“You could find parents arguing in front of their children, community members beating or killing a suspect with children watching and they are even allowed to watch social media videos of mob violence. So, we are saying these behaviours should be put to rest because that’s what has facilitated an increase in cases of suicide among children,” said Phiri.

One of the officials at Malawi Prison Service Inspector Joseph Charles Mwalambura, pointed out that mental health issue has not spared a department claiming prison warders who are always face to face with prisoners, are also psychologically disturbed.

Mwalambura and other participants at meeting, later encouraged Lifeline Malawi to consider working with all sectors and departments if the fight against mental health in the country is to be won.

At the workshop, men in the country have also been challenged to always share their daily experiences with friends and relatives as reports indicate more men are committing suicide than women.

Meanwhile, it is reported that at least 39 Malawians have committed suicide in January alone and from this figure, 37 are men while two are women with debts and marriage problems being the main contributing factors.

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