The Weekend Express

An Official Publication of the Malawi Institute of Journalism

YOUTHS CELEBRATE EASTER IN STYLE

BY EMMANUEL KACHIGWADA

As part of celebrating 2014 Easter season, St. Ignatius Catholic Youth Organisation of Area 30 donated different items to children at Adziwa Orphanage Centre in Lilongwe, Kauma village on Sunday 20th April 2014.

After the donation, chairman of St. Ignatius Catholic Youth Organisation, Precious Chagunda, said the donated items are worth k36,750.00. They include clothes, 6 cartons of washing soap (ufresh), bathing soap, body lotion, salt, and sugar among others.

“As we are celebrating that Jesus Christ has defeated death, we saw that it would be important for us to come and celebrate with the children here at Adziwa Orphanage Centre and donate some items which will be useful in their lives,” said Precious.

He also urged youths from different religious institutions to take responsibility of helping the needy the way St. Ignatius Catholic Youth Organisation is doing.

According to one of the committee members at Adziwa Orphanage Centre, pastor Joseph Chisinga, the orphanage started operating in 2005, with 340 orphans. In 2014, the number of the orphans rose to 580.

“I am very happy to say that so far we have managed to construct 23 houses for the children and a primary school. We face a lot of challenges like lack of school fees for those who are in secondary schools, insufficient food and lack of transport to take the children to the hospital when they fall sick during the night,” said pastor Chisinga.

Pastor Chisinga urged different organisations and companies to spare their time and visit the orphanage to help solving some problems the children are facing.

PETER CLEARED ON GREEN CARD

By Peter Lungile Chidothe

The current president of Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), Peter Mutharika, might have made a little quick decision to surrender his green card at the American Embassy.

This follows the remarks by the Chairman of Malawi Electoral Commission, Maxon Mbendera, at the submission of the nomination papers by the DPP president. Mbendera said that after MEC’s independent wide consultations on the issue, it was learnt that this was no longer an issue in the Malawi’s electoral process.

“We sought independent legal consultation on this issue (green card) with the Attorney General, some other Senior Counsels and independent lawyers, we found that a holder of green card cannot be barred from contesting in an election.

“At MEC, our decisions are made by law, we are independent and will tend to remain so,” said Mbendera.

On his side, Peter Mutharika said that he knew that the green card was not an issue.

“All along I knew it was not an issue but the whole thing was drawing a lot of attention. So I chose to leave that aside so that we can deal with real issues,” said Mutharika.

Worries are what will be done by Peter Mutharika if things do not go according to plan. 

DPP reveals running mate systematically

Peter making his speech at COMESA, aside is his running mate Saulos Chilima

Peter making his speech at COMESA, aside is his running mate Saulos Chilima

By Peter Lungile Chidothe

In what they are calling ‘Democratic Progressive Party style’, its president Professor Peter Mutharika revealed his running in a systematic way on Monday when he was going to submit his nominations papers to the Electoral Commission at COMESA Hall in Blantyre.
The long waited running happened to be Saulosi Chilima, Chief Executive Officer of Airtel Malawi. This has brought mixed reactions as many people thought he would choose someone within the party.
After presenting his papers, Peter called for transparent, free and fair elections.
“May I ask the Malawi Electoral Commission that these elections should be transparent, free and fair. There should be no manipulation of the legal system,” said Mutharika.
He said it is been a long journey for him to reach this stage.
“I have met a lot of difficulties and obstacle. I just thank God Almighty. I can’t do this alone, I call all Malawians of goodwill to support me on this journey,” he said.
Speaking after presenting certificate to Mutharika, MEC Chairperson Maxon Mbendera said that presentation of nomination papers was a very significant page. He added that elections are competitions because only one winners emerges.  He asked the candidates to conduct civilised campaigns.
“You should confine yourself  to a civilised campaign. Malawians are tired of foul singing. Champion clean campaign. the code of conduct you signed this morning should be observed,” said Mbendera.
Peter officially presented his running-mate at Ryalls Hotel in Blantyre in a press briefing. He said Chilima is a competent person. Mr. Chilima confirmed his acceptance and said he will support Mutharika during the campaigning period.
“I confirm my acceptance and I assure my president of my support. We will work together during the campaigning period, when he will be going to the state house, I’ll be going to Area 12,” said Chilima.

NATIONAL CANCER CENTRE PROJECT STILL ON PLANNING STAGE

Dr. Magombo speaking at the function

Dr. Magombo speaking at the function

cancer survivors that were present at the symposium

cancer survivors that were present at the symposium

By: Peter Lungile Chidothe

Malawians will have to wait a little longer for government to kick start the National Cancer Centre Project.

This was revealed on Tuesday during the 2014 Cancer Symposium which was held at John Hopkins at Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital in Blantyre.

Representative of Ministry of Health, Doctor Magomba accompanied by Henry Chimbali said that there is a need of raising a lot of money for the project.

“The project will need almost 13 million United States Dollars. Up to now that amount of money has not been raised. We are looking for partners to help us so that we can start building the centre.  The Indian government has shown commitment to give funds towards the construction and International Atomic Energy (IEA) has been with us in the whole planning process,” she said.

Another reason that is putting the plan behind the schedule is that cancer has just been included in the national strategic planning.

“Cancer is one of the non-communicable diseases; therefore it was not included in the strategic planning. Even before it was included, government is putting its effort to help in fighting the disease. It contributes more than K400 million in government hospitals for screening as well as treatment,” said Magombo.

Dr. Masamba speaking at the function

Dr. Masamba speaking at the function

Dr. Masamba, an oncologist at QECH said government has to move a little faster in addressing the National Cancer Center issue because it seems Malawi is the only country which seems to lag behind.

“We were together some ten years ago with our friends from Zambia when we discussed the idea of having cancer centres in our own countries. As of now Zambia has its own centre and even Malawian patients are going to be treated there while we are still on planning stage,” said Masamba.

Iness (left) who suffered from esophagus cancer and her colleague who suffered from breast cancer

Iness (left) who suffered from esophagus cancer and her colleague who suffered from breast cancer


Iness Tembo, a representative of the cancer survivors at the function who suffered from esophagus cancer said government has to do something on the matter especially bringing treatment close to cancer patients.

“It is very expensive to pay for the treatment and even worse if you have to be treated outside the country. If you wait for the government referral, it takes a long time and many die before even they are treated. If we can have the centre it will be better because many cancer cases will be treated in very early stages,” said Tembo.

Dr. Magombo said as of now government has allocated money in this financial to kick start the project and that a contractor has been engaged.

By then, when the project will commence, it is expected to take 22 months to complete the centre.

cross section of people who attended the meeting

cross section of people who attended the meeting

Sunbird Malawi has contributed K2 million to Cancer Association of Malawi to help them in awareness campaigns and some operations. It called for other institutions to follow its lead.

Also Gift of the Givers pledged to help with some materials to the cancer ward.

Certificates were presented to nurses who have completed training on cancer. They were both from Queens, Blantyre Adventist Hospital and Mwaiwathu.

This year’s theme is ‘Debunk the Myths’.

MIJ BLANTYRE CAMPUS CHOOSE NEW UNION BEARERS

Clement Gwaza

Student ‘s  at Malawi  Institute of Journalism (MIJ) from Blantyre campus have chosen new office bearers in the students union in an occasion that was held at the institutions’ main campus. The new members are James Chirambo who has won the presidency post with 40 votes after defeating Florence Chilanga and Grace Chimwaza with 23 and 15 votes respectively.

This means Chilanga has claimed the Vice Presidency post. Apart from this post, there were also some students who have claimed some positions like Meekness Simfukwe who is now the Treasure, Mphatso Chakhaza now the Sports Director, Chikondi Alufai Banda who is now the secretary and Phillip Banda  now the Welfare Director.

Speaking during the ceremony, one of the lecturers, Patrick Mlekano commended the previous union for making it possible in achieving certain goals and bringing unification amongst students.

“Let me thank you the ongoing union that you have done you’re part and that it is the turn for the newly members to show what they can contribute to this school and improving the welfare of the students. You need to be strong enough because you have been entrusted with all the responsibilities and you will be the link between the students and the staff members out there,” said Mlekano.

Speaking at the function, the outgoing union president, Mac Donald kaleso, thanked all the students for their cooperation during their entire tenure. He asked the newly elected members to stand film on their decisions.

“These positions are very delicate and you need to know that you will be interacting with many people so be prepared for this task. It is a must that you should be sacrificing yourselves for the benefit of this institution, but we wish you well on the positions you have attained,” added Kaleso.

MATUMBI BLAMES DPP FOR NOT GETTING SUPPORT

Clement Gwaza

One of the renowned country’s musician, Chiyanjano Muheziwa also known as Annie Matumbi has blamed the former ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) for not offering any support despite showing his interest to contest in the next years tripartite elections. He was speaking in an interview with MIJ Weekend Express.

Matumbi said most of the youth have passion for this nation and that it is high time they have been sidelined in politics hence demanding for their consideration in running the affairs of this country. He also said previously, they (youths) were not being considered and that now it’s time for people especially those from Thyolo to try new blood.

Asking more support, Matumbi

Asking more support, Matumbi

“I have had the passion and with many people approaching me, I feel like they know how dedicated I can be in running the affairs of my area. It is my turn that I should assist my area and am fully prepared for this task but I am not getting any support from  the current member of parliament for the area Allan Chembekeza and DPP members, the thing which is worry some,” added Matumbi.

He cited the coming in of musicians like as Lucius Banda, Joseph Tembo and Billy Kaunda as a breakthrough into front line politics.

“Let me emphasize here that we have seen many musicians turning into politicians and at the same time delivering a lot in their constituencies like every other politician. So when people from Thyolo, Masambanjati and other areas vote for me during the primary elections and the next years tripartite elections, they will at least experience something different for am more than ready to develop the area. Mind you this is a serious business which is different from dancehall or ragga because it requires ones focus and passion,” added Matumbi.

He said that this would not affect his music career for he has been in many situations previously and already has some songs that contain politics in nature.

He also commented on one of his songs titled ‘vote wisely’, the song that tells people to vote for candidates based on what they are telling them that they would fulfill. Matumbi said that the song is not propaganda for his candidacy but rather expressing what the Malawians will need come any elections.

According to his face book page, the profile indicates that he has been working for Malawi Defense Force (MDF). When asked to say something on this, Matumbi just laughed off and said he has never worked for MDF.

“Yes, it is true that on face book profile I did indicate that I work there at MDF but that is not the case, I am just a family man with one daughter, Chikondi. I never worked there but most of the times, I am found at Kamuzu Barracks and MAFCO that’s why many of my friends are soldiers, so you can see that I am surrounded and associate mostly by soldiers. That is why I just indicated that I work for MDF jokingly,” commented Matumbi.

Matumbi came into the music industry way back in early 90’s with a debut album Amayi that saw the artist being named The King of Ragga. He has five albums to his credit namely; Amayi, Abambo, Agogo, Chidzukulu and Achemwa respectively. He is one of the few musicians that has come out declaring their intentions to contest in the next year elections apart from Tay grin, Wendy Harawa and Lawrence Mbenjere just to mention a few.

TRUE LIFE DRAMA

  • IS PRIESTLY MARRIAGE POSSIBLE? – EVA

By Clement Gwaza

He promised to be paying her school fees and considering the poverty she was in, she thought it wise to grab that opportunity. Unfortunately things turned out to be sour because the priest never fulfilled his promises.

Eva Nkanda (not real name), 25, is a young lady who comes from Zomba Chingale. She was in standard 8 at Chipini primary when she met a man whilst coming from school with her friend. The man was on a motor cycle, and he stopped where they were, he asked them where they were from, and he told them that he was just a visitor in the area. He was a Priest that was sent to visit the area. Eva thought that was all because looking at the man, was too old, around 50s.

Then, the following week there was a game at their school, where she met again that man and they had a good chat.

“I remember him telling us that he was a soccer fanatic and that he plans to launch a trophy in our area. He also told me that he loved irrigation and that was the end of our second conversation. Whilst at the end he asked us our names,” narrated Eva.

Then after a week, Eva saw a certain young man who brought a letter and in the letter, Eva was invited to a Youth meeting that was to be held at the Parish. When she told her mother, and relatives, they all gave her a go ahead because they thought this was a for the priest wanted to be paying school fees for some students in the area.

“My relatives encouraged me to go because the Priest would have been an advantage on their school fees crisis. I did not hesitate but rather go to there,” added Eva.

Little did she know that whatever the Priest was doing to her was totally different from what she thought. When she reached at the parish, she was surprised to find that there was nothing like Youth Meeting. Eva was welcomed by the Priest and was told to enter inside the house. To her surprise, he made many promises including sending her to boarding school and all financial support. He even promised to support her siblings. They had a very good conversation that day and to Eva, it was like another milestone.

To her surprise, the Priest went to his room and she was on the sitting room. He called her to follow him to his room. Since she was afraid, she followed him and the man grabbed her, forced himself into her and the obvious thing happened.

“I tried to resist him but he overpowered me. He then torn my underwear and forced himself. I was in deep pain for it was my first time to have sex. I cannot remember how I was brought back home buts when I woke up my mother was weeping,” said Eva.

One would question why she not call for a help did, she said she thought that would distract her ambition of getting sponsorship and all the promises made to her.

Then the after two days, Priest told her that she should get prepared because soon she would be going to Nyungwe Girls Secondary School. Unfortunately, she only learnt a single term, she discovered that she was pregnant. Having known the consequences, rules and regulations of the school, Eva had to run away from school. She had to cheat her parents that she was chased for failing to finish off the school fees. Then after sometime, she started changing her statements.

“I started telling him (Priest) that I was pregnant so I could not proceed with my education but to him it used to be sounded like a joke. Then after sometime, he noticed some signs in me and he was hostile every time I meet him” said Eva.

To her surprise, he told her to get prepared so that they should go to Banja La Mtsogolo. It really happened, we were on our way from Chipini to Zomba city.

“Initially, he told me that we would be going to Banja La Mtsogolo for verification purpose but I think deep down he had already discussed with some nurses at the hospital,” said Eva.

It came as a surprise because she was given some medicine which in the end were meant to abort the baby. When this was happening, her parents did not know anything and even where she was.

“When I asked him why he did that, he became furious and told me that he is a Priest that means he cannot marry. After that I returned home with him and I had a continuous menstrual for six months,” lamented Eva.

She said later on, she started coughing, the beginning of tuberculosis. When she visited a certain hospital, it was found out that she had tuberculosis. After that incident, Eva thought otherwise and decided to find someone of his age. He was a young man doing some studies at certain private colleges.

When the priest heard this, he frightened them and promised to deal with them should the relationship continue. So Eva had to think otherwise and terminated the relationship.

So the priest started taking her wherever he was going and to her that was like a family. Then he impregnated her again, but for her not to abort Eva went to her home village to stay with her parents till she gave birth. He tried his best to make her abort again but failed in the end. He could come and take her for a walk but she vowed never to take any kind of food from him again until she gave birth. Then in 2010 she gave birth to a baby boy and was named Andrew (not real name).

But despite getting financial support, she is worried on how people will treat her son if they come to know who her father is. She is not sure when will be the best time to tell her son about their relationship. But to her she is married to a priest.

She is currently staying at Chinamwali in Zomba selling second half clothes and the priest visits her all the time

“I will use the voice that the Lord gave  me to preach gospel”-Armstrong Sopani Kalua.

Image

Armstrong Kalua.

By: Chimwemwe Padatha 

News that the “Ndamusowa’’ icon switched from secular to gospel music has left many dumbfounded.

It doesn’t take one to ask as to why I am saying this, because it all goes down to the lyrical tunes that the star has left behind to secular music lovers.

With the wind of change blowing in the musical scene, will the “Ndekha” star’s change of musical tune transform Youths to follow his footsteps in gospel music?

As I write and you read, he has already done 3 single tracks in his new music genre that are currently enjoying Airwaves on the public broadcaster, MBC radio 2.

Among the list of Armstrong’s new hits, is “Ndilandileni”, a song which he says came as a dream. “I, at one time dreamt walking on a road which was filled with darkness at the end,” Kalua said.

The song says that, his life was about to be destroyed then he wrote the song for God to receive him.

“The reason why I changed my music and life is that God called me to take part in gospel” he recalls the dream.

Kalua boosts, “You can’t understand how God transforms people”, and was quick to say that he is no longer the one people used to know as he will now stick to gospel lyrics.

As to when to expect the gospel album, Armstrong didn’t promise the date but said that the date and time will come basing on what the lord will say to him.

Armstrong will perform his first gospel show in Lilongwe on October 6 2013 at Shaffer Marquee with The Marvelous Deeds.

Currently, Armstrong is a member of Assemblies of God, Chilomoni, congregation, Blantyre. 

 

TDSW COMMENDS YENDA NURSERY SCHOOL

By Action Mwanyali

Thyolo District Social Welfare Officer, Elizabeth Mlato, on Friday last week commended Yenda nursery school meeting the social welfare’s nursery schools care requirements, she made these remarks during the celebration of school term closing at Yenda nursery school ground.

According to Mlato, a nursery school is supposed to have the buildings with self-contained class rooms including school teaching materials, sufficient water supply, food provision with good diet, and ground for playing kids, enough teachers, good environment and many teaching materials.

“I have been visiting a lot of nursery school here in Thyolo district but I have never met a nursery school like Yenda nursery. This school has indeed met the requirements of a well implemented nursery school because what I have seen here is totally different from other nursery school I have ever seen,” said Mlato.

Acer Image

 Thyolo also DSWO congratulated the donors (Sottosopra Malawi) of Yenda nursery school for making it the nursery full of success for the whole year in this area ( Nanseta) where there was a report of high level of orphans who were not going to school at a nursery age.

“Let me extend my gratitude to the Donors who are also the founders of Yenda nursery school. This area of Nanseta had a greater number of orphans who were not going to school but now with the school, the number has been reduced at very good rate,” she continued to say.

On the other hand Ascot Magongwa, the Chairman of Yenda nursery school committee, was quick to comment on the food which the school feeds the Kids per year that it is plenty.

“We are lucky because our Donors try their best to provide the school with enough food which covers the whole year. This makes the Kids here look health, not only this, they are also providing the school with everything necessary for the Kids quality education,” said Magongwa.

Magongwa concluded that the Kids from Yenda nursery school are equipped with good knowledge which helps them to start their new primary education with some basic knowledge.

The celebration was attended by several village headmen from different villages around Traditional Authority Nansenta together with the Kids and their guardians.

The day ended up by gifts presentation to those Kids who were graduating to commence the coming year standard one primary education.

SOTTOSOPRA MALAWI

By Action Mwanyali

Sottosopra logo

Sottosopra logo

  • “Turning the World upside down looking at it from a new angle…What would the priorities of the planet be then? What would be charge and what would be confusions?-SOTTOSOPRA.

This is an Italian non profit organisation which was formed with an aim of promoting development through education formation, health and sanitation for the youth of T/A Chimaliro,in Thyolo district, Malawi.

According to Davide Pantaleon, the Director of the organisation, the aim is not just to keep an eye on but rather get involved in collaborating with the local community.

Sottosopra Malawi has got a guest’s house in Thyolo District, that accommodate its guests who visit Malawi by the name of Sottosopra association.

“Each visitor before coming to Malawi is supposed to attend a two -day course of understanding more about Sottosopra and these are called ‘In-forming days’,” said Pantaleoni.

He continued to say that on the first day, the visitors are briefed on the culture of Malawi and how they can collaborate with local people.

“We do not want people to come and be ignorant to the people here but need to understand where they want to go if not convinced they might quit their trip because as association we believe that understanding is better than knowing,” added Pantaleoni.

On the second day of in-forming, the visitors are given the the chance of asking questions about anything concerning Malawi such as the environment, culture, people and others.

As the name suggest, Sottosopra means upside down which is struggling to develop a better and understandable World

It believes that the World we live in should reduce the distance between it’s people
In 2004, Sottosopra was registered and constituted in Italy but has been active since 1994 as “Zikomo Malawi committee.”

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