CEDAW Concluding Observations: Malawi, 2015

Published: 20/Nov/2015
Source: UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW)

Concluding observations on the seventh periodic report of Malawi




28.Notwithstanding the administrative practice of not withdrawing the citizenship of women who marry foreign men, the Committee remains concerned about discriminatory provisions in the Citizenship Act, including with regard to the ability of Malawian women to confer their nationality on foreign spouses. It is further concerned that the Act does not contain sufficient safeguards to ensure that children who are otherwise stateless can acquire Malawian nationality, in particular the children of Malawians who migrated to Zimbabwe and children born to Mozambicans who live in the State party. The Committee notes with concern that children born in Malawi to parents who are not of African descent are explicitly excluded from the right to acquire citizenship by birth.

29. The Committee urges the State party to expeditiously revise the Citizenship Act to ensure that women and men enjoy equal rights to acquire, change, transfer and retain nationality and to introduce safeguards to ensure that children born in its territory who would otherwise be stateless are granted nationality. The State party should also consider acceding to the 1961 Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness.

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Themes: Acquisition of nationality, Acquisition by children, Discrimination, Ethnic/Racial/Religious, Gender, Naturalisation and Marriage, Statelessness
Regions: Malawi
Year: 2015