President Peter Mutharika on Tuesday appointed Chimwemwe Chipungu as Executive Director of Presidential Initiative for Safe Motherhood replacing Dorothy Ngoma .
Office of President and Cabinet (OPC) announced the announcement.
Chipungu, a national organising secretary of ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and a close aide of Mutharika, confirmed the appointment.
“Yes, am grateful to His Excellency for giving me this enormous task and am ready to serve effectively,” he said.
Presidential Initiative for Safe Motherhood was launched by former president Joyce Banda, who rose to prominence as a relentless women’s rights advocate,
Banda, who was dethroned as Malawi’s special ambassador on safemotherhood by late president Bingu wa Mutharika replacing her with his wife Callista Mutharika, entrusted Senior Chief Kwataineto lead the initiative as board chair.
During Banda-rule, the Global Leaders Council for Reproductive Health (GLC) has rated Malawi as a star in safe motherhood initiatives despite some challenges in maternal mortality and family planning..
Malawi has one of the highest maternal mortality rates in the world—standing at 675 deaths per 100 000 births whereas the birth rate stands at almost six children per mother. This shows a decline from 1 120 maternal deaths per 100 000 births and a birth rate of seven.