Mutharika says smoking started before Jesus walked on earth: ‘Malawi will not feel guilty for growing tobacco’

Malawian President Peter Mutharika has said the country will continue to grow tobacco and will not feel guilty about it amidst opposition from anti-smoking groups, saying people have been smoking even before Jesus Christ walked on this earth.

Mutharika inspecting the tobacco leaf

Mutharika inspecting the tobacco leaf

Mutharika saod Malawi would continue to support the tobacco industry, the mainstay of the economy and the country’s second largest employer after the government, until alternative cash crops were found.

In an interview published in the London-based New African magazine, Muthatrika asserted that Malawi cannot stop growing tobacco overnight and will continue growing tobacco based on trade requirements until when there is no demand,

He said people have the option to smoke or not to smoke.

“We are not forcing them to smoke, we are just growing tobacco so we don’t have to feel guilty,” Mutharika said.

The Malawi leader pointed out that tobacco forms about 60% of our foreign exchange earnings.

“When I was in Washington last year, I talked to all the big US tobacco companies about the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control and the activities of the tobacco lobby. The market is going to go down, no doubt about it; but somebody is always going to smoke, whether it is in Vietnam or China or Taiwan,” said Mutharika.

President Mutharika stressed that people have been smoking since time immemorial “even before Jesus Christ walked on this earth. And people will continue to smoke. So there will always be a market, it may be smaller, but it will be there.”

However, Mutharika said Malawi will diversify its economy from tobacco, by going into mining and other cash crops.

“ We are going to put one million hectares of land under irrigation at Salima near Lake Malawi to grow rice, legumes, sugar cane, and mangoes. We hope that with mining and diversification for other crops, we can reduce our dependence on tobacco,” said Mutharika.

“But I don’t think people will completely stop growing tobacco. I was even told by the US tobacco giant, Philip Morris, that they are coming up with new forms of tobacco because of the danger inherent in smoking.

“They are also going to increase their research into less dangerous tobacco to ensure that the industry survives. At the moment Malawi is dependent on tobacco, but we are moving away slowly to other areas,” said Mutharika.

Malawi’s draft economic growth strategy proposes a diversified agricultural sector, where tobacco will be replaced by crops like cotton and cassava.

Greater emphasis on mining, tourism and manufacturing is also planned—although this has been met with scepticism from certain business representatives.

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76 thoughts on “Mutharika says smoking started before Jesus walked on earth: ‘Malawi will not feel guilty for growing tobacco’”

  1. Wisdom Of Thomas says:

    Mr President is an antichrist, are you trying to say Lord Jesus christ failed to stop smoking?

    1. wawa says:

      you will Die soon

  2. M'busa says:

    But this Gvt, always against God. Kaliati compared Biblical poor Lazarus to Dr Chakwera; kuti he can’t rule Malawi -he just be waiting for the next kingdom of God. Now Mr president comparing tobacco era ndi BC . ANTHUWA NDI A SAULI. God Cannot be happy that nonsense. No wonder in U’r first term ma floods like never b4. Njala yosakamba. Insecurity . Kwacha depreciating bcoz tobacco season yatha. ma salary kuchedwa. commodities high inspite of no salary increament. THESE ARE MULUZI TIMES. Amalawi Tilape. A sin against son of God is forgivable but against the Holy Spirit = catastrophe.

  3. George phiri says:

    Context is the issue here. Peter is talking about time factor and people are talking about spirituality. Peter did NOT say Jesus smoked. Understand before we comment. Dont even demonise tobacco because those that grow it are either christians or muslims. Both who believe in Jesus.

  4. George phiri says:

    Whats the connection between Tobacco, Jesus and Muhammad? Peter mentioned Jesus out of his own will and he has the right. I urge muslims not to get carried away by insulting Jesus because if anyone insults Muhammad is because of his/her own ignorace so dont even try to insult Jesus. Muslims are commanded in the quran to believe in all the prophets and that includes Jesus. By the way its not all christians who believe that Jesus is God so dont insult each other. Have your faith and let me have mine. God is the best of judges.

  5. baggio says:

    Mr president let god be god,osamayelekeza ZANU zamudimazo ndi mulungu,4m today u have to know that Jesus is son of god ngati munalibe choti mukambe azanu amagokhala chete zoyelekezela zonsezi inu kukachula Jesus,mwina simudziwa mau,Mau amati osamatchula mulungu wako pachabe be careful a bwana osamazipalamulila moto

  6. phwado says:

    Old people always are resistance to change.Because their medula oblangata has so deteriorated that the no longer think normally,they feel what was good in their good old time is still good.Poor Old Peter Mutharika and your fellow gogos.Things have changed and you must know that.Tobacco is no longer a profitable crop.We needed an alternative source of income.Unfortunately your greedy brother stole proceeds from Kayelekera.Poor Malawian choice of leaders

  7. innocent chiyagwaza mhango says:

    Big up peter
    May be amalawi do not understand it’s not about jesus but about “tobacco since time immemorial” and that’s true.
    Koma madala peter ndithawi sopano yoti we shouldn’t be behind times. Allow us ana anu to run things. Timanyadila kumakhala ndi president ngati inu madala.so much motivating . Malawi is rich.we are rich we got everything.lets support each other.we coming to invest home.sizotipusitsa ndi ndale

  8. Wa BB says:

    Mathanyula anu ajaso akamakupezetsani ndalama mutiuzaso kuti anayamba before Christ. Just find an alternative basi. It doesn’t matter when this evil thing started. What the world is saying is that this thing needs to be stopped. Don’t be a clueless leader. On the other hand guys lets not waste time arguing over the right way for praising the Lord. Let God judge us when time comes. Some of us we talk like whatever we are saying comes from God when its just our opinion after reading the scriptures. Ine all I know is that there is God but as to who is right God himself knows.

  9. LETS GROW TOBACCO.IT IS A STRATEGIC CROP.

  10. ulanda says:

    King James ndiwe kape bwanji!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Chidude chenicheni ndi Muhamad wako wodyedwa ndi agaruyo wamva

  11. Redeemed one says:

    Asaaa Mr President, u r not okey up here, this shows the downfall of you

  12. Kandapako says:

    The mention of Jesus Christ was in the context of time frame. When we say such and such happened in 3000 BC (Before Christ) or the year 2015 AD (Anno Domini) it is in the context of time. Such has nothing to do with religion or a particular personality.

  13. Takunyadirani a Professor Peter Mutharika

  14. kunena mosapyatila says:

    I would like to answer the fanatic followers of Muhammad called Muslims who until today do not believe that Jesus is God. We Christians, believe in the Trinity: God the father, God the son (Jesus Christ) & God the Holy Spirit. Jesus Christ (God the son) came from Heaven to save mankind & He performed different signs and wonders beyond human comprehension that proved He was the son of God. Before He went to Heaven, He gave His followers power & authority to cast out demons, raise the dead, preach the good news and perform all kinds of miracles in HIS NAME. These things are happening even in today’s Church. This proves that Jesus is the son of God. I have never heard of demons being cast out or miracles performed in the name of Muhammad in mosques (try it & see if it will work), you can now see the difference! If you are still doubting, just wait a couple of years to come when our Lord Jesus Christ (God the son) will come in His Mighty Power and Glory and you shall see Him.

    About your faith, it is a conspiracy in history. It is the enemy (the devil) through his agents that enriched the widow (Khadijah) to groom her husband to be (Muhammad) to create a counterfeit faith to Christianity. This is evident in the fanatic teachings of jihad & the black flag (death itself). The fact remains that there is no Heaven for a person who commits suicide (it is an abomination before God). John 10: 10-The devil comes to steal, kill and destroy but Jesus came so that you may have life, and life abundantly.

    Concerning Mr President, if you were to mention the name of Muhammad in this tobacco talk, these fanatics of Muhammad would have numbered your days on earth via jihad through any means available in the name of defending the name of their prophet. (Mr King James & company who is worshipping a human being here). But what you have to know is that my Lord Jesus Christ (Yeshua Ha Mashiach) is an Awesome and Mighty King who doesn’t wage physical battles as jihadists do rather He fights spiritual battles. Remember Sani Abacha, King Herod, Bingu Wa Mutharika and many other leaders who at the height of their power disrespected the living God. They ended up miserably.

    WATCH OUT!!!

  15. Nyamakumutu says:

    May be the coding was not well don’t in Chichewa but the meaning of BC is Before Christ and who is this Christ is it not Jesus our Lord. He would have said that smoking started long time ago Bofore Christ it would have been simple for you to understand. I think he was speaking it in this line but if he said it in blaspheming then it’s up to The Lord to handle him.

  16. Theo says:

    Chonde bambp Khoviwa mulangize munthu wanu wachikunjayo kuti asadzayelekeze kugemula Muhammad! Sitikufuna book haram Juno. Nanunso a Busa Maulana Ku BT Synod mwawona kususuka kwanu – going after quantity and not quality. Niyeleyo!!

  17. Zagwa says:

    A lot of things were there before Jesus Christ but that doesn’t make them alright and dependable. Should we for instance start depending on prostitution? Mumakhumudwitsanso akulu inu Bwanji?

  18. kunena mosapyatila says:

    I would like to answer the fanatic followers of Muhammad called Muslims who until now don’t recognise that Jesus Christ is God. We Christians believe in the Trinity. Thus God the Father, God the son (Jesus Christ) & God the Holy Spirit. Jesus Christ (God the son) came on earth to save mankind and He did all the signs and wonders beyond human comprehension to prove that He is the son of God. When He was leaving for Heaven, He gave to His followers authority and power to heal, cast out demons and perform all sorts of miracles in HIS NAME. These things are evident in today’s church. This is to prove that Jesus is God. I have never heard of demons being cast out in the name of Muhammad in mosques (try one day if it will work), now you can see the difference .If you still doubt, just wait for a couple of years to come because He is coming in His Glory and you shall see Him.

    Concerning your faith, it is a conspiracy in history. It is the enemy (the devil) who used his agents to enrich the widow (Khadija) so that she could groom her husband to be (Muhammad) to create a counterfeit faith against Christianity. This is evident in the fanatic teachings of Jihad and the black flag (death itself). The fact remains that there is no Heaven for person who commits suicide (that one is an abomination before God). John 10:10- The devil comes to steal, kill and destroy but Jesus came so that you may have life, and life abundantly.

    Concerning Mr President, if you were to mention the name of Muhammad in your tobacco talk, these fanatics called Muslims would have numbered your days via jihad. But what you have to know is that my Lord Jesus Christ is the awesome and powerful king. He doesn’t fight physical battles as jihadists but spiritual ones. Watch out how you use His name. Remember Sani Abacha, Bingu Wa Mutharika and many others. Their downfall came due disrespect towards God.

    WATCH OUT!!!

  19. Martin Mtambo says:

    Was there any need for mentioning the name of Jesus on this contrary issue?Much as you have every reason to defend growing of the country’s biggest foreign currency earner,Mr president,remember to save the name of Jesus for important and relevant issues befitting such a Holy name

  20. maganizo anga says:

    INDE FODYA AMATIBWERETSERA NDALAMA BUT THAT DOESN’T MAKE IT A RIGHT THING TO DO, DON’T GIVE US USELESS EXCUSES…MXM

  21. Concerned Malawian says:

    You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain Exodus 20:7

  22. w.lungu says:

    When GOD made the earth JESUS was there with him. He only appeared in a human body once .He will now come to judge you and me. Smoking, money does not contribute anything to the kingdom of GOD.

  23. Nachipanti says:

    Mr President. Where you there before Jesus walked on earth. Some statements needs to be checked before being made. You are embarrassing yourself here.

  24. king james says:

    Muslims believe that JESUS, ABRAHAM ,MOSES, MUHAMMAD , NOAH, anyway just to mention a few were prophets sent by the Almighty God
    But what is baffling me is that some idiots tha pray and think that some name mentioned herein is actually God himself and are insulting other religious beliefs is very awkward
    You are /were a ‘ SON ‘ of your mother and visa-v Jesus is /was a ‘ SON’ of Maria , born in Bethlehem, mukola la ‘ngombe and some of us want to allege that he is GOD ?
    NDIYE ‘ BLASPHEMY ‘ imeneyo and suffice to say that is why you are called ” MAKAFIRIS” non believers . I rest my case

  25. chakuda says:

    Eeeeee guys just comment on what mr presdent say , osati mutitukwanile mpulumutsi. Wa moyo wanga (YESU)

  26. mwadoh says:

    thats y jesus came down here kuzatifela

  27. Winston chide says:

    Za Mulungu zinke kwa Mulungu,watch your mouth and mind your talk peter

  28. kabotolokamo says:

    Not surprised ! l remember his brothers down fall in Mzimba , one word ” Ine ndine yesu ” meaning am not Jesus — alas ! His end was bad . These people think Jesus is some one they can messing about with ! wow ! wow! wow ! l wish he would retract the statement he made but too late now !

    1. mwadoh says:

      stupid noise

  29. MKWAPU says:

    AS A CHRISTIAN I FEEL VERY OFFENDED
    IF IT WERE MUHAMAD U COULDNT DARE

  30. Nganali kombweke says:

    Do u know the meaning of blaspheme?. Anthu enanu mumafuna kuoneka ngati olungama chosecho machimo ali tho. mene ndikunena pano ena makwera kale malichero ulendo okatamba. chomwe mungaziwe ndi chakuti, fodya ndi backbone ya economy mw muno basi.

  31. Chifundo says:

    When someone mentions Jesus ndiye most malawians rush to behave like they are angels. ” Ooooh you can’t say that to the name of my Lord” “oooh that’s blasphemous. We are a God fearing nation”. Zauchitsiru basi. Ntchito zathu speak volumes of who we really are. The devilish nations are donating billions for development zomwe akhrisitunu mukuba kumakamangila ma church kuti muzibelamo anthu osauka. Read the posts on this forum. So many stories zophana,kuchinda azikazi aeni mugalimoto zogula through cashgate, kuchinda ana atchito munyumba yandalama za cashgate. What Mubtharika mentioned is just a fact. Just like saying prostution was there even before Jesus Christ. No honest person be it Christian or not can dispute that.

  32. Nganali kombweke says:

    Do you know the meaning of blaspheme? Anthu enanu mumakhala ngati kuti Mulunguyo ndi amalume anu bwanji, chosecho muli anthu ochimwa mochitisa kaso. mene ndikunenamu enanu muli malichero kuulendo okatamba. fodya ndi backbone ya economy MW muno basi.

  33. Pastor Wa Nyasaland says:

    Mr President there are things that we joke about but not blasphemy. Of all names or examples in the world, you cannot utter the name of our Lord Jesus Christ in connection to a devilish businesses in the name of supporting the so called green gold. Over reliance on this businesses is what has made this country the poorest in the world! Can’t you feel it?

    Mr Presidential advisor on religious affairs haven’t you lectured enough this leader of ours on the cost of blasphemy? Mr President, you have overstepped your freedom of expression and authority. Just in case you don’t know this is one of the references: DANIEL 5:1-30. Malawians with the foresight of the Lord’s spirit can remember what I commented some weeks ago & I will repeat it. THIS MAN HAS A PROPHECY ON HIS HEAD AND THE MORE CHILDISH & USELESS HE TALKS, THE FASTER THE PROPHECY IS GOING TO MANIFEST. Let’s wait and see as events unfold.

    God bless You dear contributors.

  34. Wysn chipolonga says:

    Zikuoneka uti a plezdnt alala ndi bar 1 kamba ka ma stetment awo ndiye tisaiwale kuti, ukatchula nkango kwera muntengo amenewa pompano timwetsa la nkando!

  35. Chifi Jasitasi says:

    The oldman has totally lost direction referring his chingambwe to Kings of Kings osati tiupulezidenti tobera mavoti Mbendera akukuwa ngati chiwombankhanga mkati mwa usiku.Keep Jesus out of this nosense.

  36. TruFactor says:

    off-limit statement.

  37. bakha says:

    alomwe wamzeru palibedi khani yafodya mpaka kutchulapo yesu osangokamba za fodyayo bwanji.ambuye akuone chule iwe.wayambananso ndi azibusa pali zelu apa tiona

  38. estery chibambo U.K says:

    Ichi ntchindere cha pulezidenti chakufikapo. A Yesu mutovwire

  39. Davien says:

    The more we grow the stuff the more people smoke, the more people get sick and the more they die, the poor the economy gets. Please have some sense Mr President!!

  40. Achikulire says:

    Ziko lathu ndi la fodya tiyeni tisasiye tilimbikre za fodya!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Hahaha!!!! My country’s president iwe nde umasuta chamba basi! Tapanga comment pa za legalisation of ganja timveno mbali yako!

  41. munthu says:

    The president need to be schooled on which names to refer when making statements. Jesus is not any other name like muhammed, he is the Saviour and muhammed knows this.basopu,osadzabwerezanso nonsense

  42. Namu! says:

    Exodus 20:7
    ” You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God, for the Lord do not hold anyone guiltless who misuses His name”.
    The name JESUS is not meant to be used anyhow. If you want to live long, fear the Lord. Jesus loves you!

  43. Nazo says:

    Please don’t mention the name Jesus Christ in vain.

  44. dull professor says:

    see my name

  45. Turnoff says:

    Ukati muhamad mulungu wa boko haram ndiye kuti chani? Kodi apa atchulapo mulungu? Yesu simulungu, Muhamad simulungu. Ndichifukwa chake a christu nose simudziwa chomwe mumapanga, moto ukukudikilani, mumapembedza munthu olengedwa ndi mulungu kusiya mulungu amene anakulengani ameneso analenga yesu mwana wa Maliya

  46. angoni apaphata says:

    Apenga tsopano awa. Zikukhudzana ndi Yesu zosuta?

  47. kambuwi says:

    Wofuntha president wa malawi.

  48. Someone tell me this man didn’t say that literally, sorry in advance Peter. His name is mightier than your cabinet even Malawi put together, and from the time immemorial God the father has taken down big bad rulers and leaders like yourself,who thought they were untouchables amongst the people they rule. And gave people better leaders. Please Peter don’t become the victim of your own pomposity. If you keep going on like this without controlling what comes out of your mouth, even opposition benches won’t predict your dawn fall. Fear God first.

  49. You will die as your older brother bingu,very soon you will faint ,for your example is like to underlay King Jesus.your are not fit to be the leader I think your are unt Christ,I never here’s like that since Malawi,even from Muslim .

  50. Peter Mathanyux says:

    No wonder some people call this so called professor as Mr. Ibu. He is an entertainer indeed. How can he say smoking was there even in Jesus’ time? Kuteroko nthawi ya Ambuye Yesu kunalinso za fodya????? Koma this mbutuma of a President does not differentiate jokes and blasphemy ndithu.

  51. Mbatizi says:

    Abwana.Do not you see that the dollar and the pound is running away from us while trucks of the green gold are offloading at Kanengo ?We need to humble ourselves and seek God s guidance as a nation .Maybe its time we looked to other guiltless stuff like Coffee which is on high demand in Taiwan etc

  52. Nangozo says:

    Ooh!! is this all the president can say. Why mention Jesus? Even if indeed people were smoking before our Lord came, what has that to do with the current times. Why not encourage production of other crops which are on demand. I see lack of wisdom in our leader.

  53. chinena says:

    Which Chapter in the Bible mentions that smoking started before Jesus was born? You r giving very bad examples, last week whe u were in Ndirande u said u frequented bottle stores of that township! Be careful u might be excommunicated!

  54. Hawa says:

    This is a proven fact and if Jesus were to come today he can agree with the President. Let’s not argue on a proven fact.

  55. wakwatabu says:

    musaiwale kuti munthuyu ndi mwana wa papa oyera,chilichonse azavomela including triple6,watch out

  56. mtumbuka1 says:

    What have this to do with Jesus Christ? You are such an idiot! After all who else benefits from the proceeds of the tobacco sales besides you and your dpp thugs who are busy stealing? That is blasphemy incase you don’t know.

  57. Pata phiri says:

    Even killing n looting was there before Jesus peace be upon him so doesn’t mean it should carry on peter get it

  58. Gaith says:

    Nkhosa ya Blamtyre Synod imeneyo. Ayi, malingana chakhumi mid sikono za mabwana a synod.

  59. jomba says:

    Iwe blessing u r a big fool don’t involve Muslims in this matter.wakamba zimenezi ndii osavinidwa nzanu! Thanani nokha akhilistu komaso Apm. Walakwisa chani? Musamangosusa zilizose coz u have a personal vendetta with peter!! DPP hozaaaaaaa

  60. Mulopwana wozindikira says:

    If u mentioned about that prophet from Arabia the husband of Khadijah,you would see human fire ball exploding everywhere.You r lucky that christians are tolerant.Don’t associate your chingambwe smoking with Jesus.Usatchule dzina la Mulungu wako pachabe.They need to drill this at your church which u attend.

  61. Achimidzimidzi says:

    Mr President you have offended me by bringing in the name of Jesus Christ in your discusions.

  62. Bongololo says:

    Actually, Mutharika is quite right! The history of smoking dates as far back as 5000 BC and the practice of growing tobacco could be seen since about 1400 BC. Obviously Mutharika is kinda complacent on finding alternatives to the increasingly unpopular crop and I disagree with the way he keeps dragging his feet, but what cannot be disputed is the fact that people were lighting up mishanga before Mary had a little boy somewhere in a manger in Bethlehem. Zikomo.

  63. Omex70 says:

    MMMMM Please Mr president, don’t bring Jesus in this issue of smoking. Be careful.

  64. lifebouy says:

    Ine ndifuseko apa ! Kodi a President anthuwa alibe omwe amawapangila prepare speech asanapite ku public? Nanga chonchi !

  65. Alungwana says:

    You speak boldly and arrogantly. You are not a buyer. Malawi can continue to grow tobacco but what if the buyers adhere to the anti smoking campaign, are you APM going to smoke the tobacco?

  66. chigumula says:

    Mr President, this is a blasphemous statement. The designers of the Titanic said they had made a ship which even Jesus would not sink. Alas! The ship sunk on its first trip killing so many lives! Be careful!

    1. Bongololo says:

      It is in fact a true statement that smoking has been part of mankind going back even centuries before Jesus was born. No blasphemy here. But what I find blasphemous is the pathetic analogy you give regarding the Titanic. It makes no sense!

  67. "A NATIVE OF NOWHERE" says:

    Look who is talking? Why bring in Jesus and not mention other religious gods people follow, why mention Jesus only, is he despising the Christian followers in Malawi? I feel sorry cos the man has blasphemed. Lord hv mercy on ur soul.

    1. Bongololo says:

      Iwe ndiwe mbuzi, wamva?

  68. stephen says:

    does the man himself know Jesus whom he is refering to

    1. Bongololo says:

      It’s a fact though that even before Jesus was born, people were accustomed to the practice of smoking tobacco and other products. The same can also be said about drinking alcohol which pre-dates the birth of Jesus by about 10,000 years. So there you have it.

  69. Dr Ben Phiri says:

    Iiiiii awa akhala pang’ono kumwalira eeeeee mpaka smoking started before Jesus came. Ukanthidwatu pansi pompano.

  70. blessing lipengs says:

    but why mentioning the Name of Jesus my king and my saviour? why not mentioning Muhammad the god of book haram and issis?

  71. ZAMKUTU says:

    The same applies to Indian hemp Mr President, let’s make hay while the sun is shining cause our Malawi Gold is one of the finest in the world and we are really loosing out financially at the moment.

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