Pride of Malawi: Queens jet in to a heroines’ welcome, pictorial

Malawi Netball Queens Tuesday, August 18, 2015 arrived back home from the just ended Sydney World Netball Cup tournament to a heroines’ welcome when they were treated to a VVIP reception by the country’s First Lady Madam Getrude Mutharika at Kamuzu International Airport (Kia) before being hosted to a luncheon by sponsors Airtel Malawi at Ufulu Gardens in Lilongwe.

First Lady greets one of the players

First Lady greets one of the players

Queens board the limo

Queens board the limo

Queens get out of the limo

Queens get out of the limo

Mwai shows off her trophy with First Lady

Mwai shows off her trophy with First Lady

Queens pose with officials from govt, Airtel and the Friends of Queens

Queens pose with officials from govt, Airtel and the Friends of Queens

Chalamba (far left) presents the cheque to the Queens

Chalamba (far left) presents the cheque to the Queens

Queens enjoy Airtel luncheon

Queens enjoy Airtel luncheon

The Friends of Queens

The Friends of Queens

It was just one of the rare moments for the Queens- dubbed the Pride of Malawi, who never anticipated to find the First Lady waiting for them at the airport.

According to coach Peace Chawinga-Kalua, the Queens only knew about Mutharika’s presence at the airport when they saw her from windows of the South African Airways aeroplane that brought them home.

They reportedly started dancing after noticing the First Lady.

As the girls and their officials came off the plane, Mutharika, in the company of Sports and Culture Minister Grace Obama Chiumia hugged each of them and presented flowers to every member of the delegation before addressing Queens at the airport’s VVIP Conference Hall.

“You are our pride,” said the First Lady.

“We followed your games in Sydney and I remember one day when we were having a Beautiful Women, Beautiful Malawi function at State House, we had to pause and watch you beating one of your opponents. We all cheered and danced,” recalled Mutharika.

The First Lady assured the Queens of her full support.

“Today, I just wanted it to be a surprise. I did not announce that I will be coming to welcome you. But be assured, I will be there for you. Whatever you need, I will be ready to assist,” she said, attracting loud cheers from the gathering.

Taking her turn, Chiumia hailed the First Lady for coming to welcome the Queens in person.

“I too did not know that you were coming and was surprised to see the red carpet. You are the first First Lady to do this and your presence is a big motivation to the girls. Although we did not make it into the top five, the Queens were the highest scoring team,” said Chiumia.

Airtel’s Sponsorship and Public Relations Manager Edith Tsirizani described the First Lady’s presence as a sweet surprise.

“Just like the First Lady has demonstrated, Airtel too trusts and believes in the girls. We always feel encouraged to move on and support the girls as they keep raising the Malawi flag higher,” said Tsirizani.

As the Queens left the VVIP Conference Room, they met another surprise outside when they found a state-of-the- art Hummer Limousine waiting to fetch them to town.

The Limo was provided by the Friends-of-Queens’ group, which added pomp to the welcoming party.

The Queens’ Limo joined the First Lady’s convoy as the procession headed for Ufulu Gardens via Area 18 Round-about and City Centre. Mutharika’s escorted the Queens all the way to Ufulu Gardens before bidding them farewell.

Before being hosted to the Airtel luncheon, the Queens had a brief audience with the Friends-of-Queens, who presented a cheque worth K1.7 million to the team.

Chairperson of the grouping Hlupikire Chalamba, who is also Airtel’s Legal Counsel and Company Secretary, said the money would be shared amongst the players, their two coaches and team doctor with each of them expected to pocket K180,000.

“We went all over the country and contacted some Malawians abroad soliciting donations for the Queens. Apart from the cash, one of the members of our group, Mike Msungama provided his Limousine to pick the Queens from the airport. This is only the beginning and we are planning big for the team,” said Chalamba, a cousin to Mwayi Kumwenda.

Speaking during the luncheon, Airtel Chief Commercial Officer Charles Kamoto said much as the Queens did not break into the top four, their performance and team spirit was encouraging.

“You were focused and showed great hunger for success. The commentators were full of praise for team Malawi.

“In order to inspire you to move to greater heights, Mr Money has decided to reward you with K1.8 million to be shared amongst the 18-members of the contingent that travelled to Australia,” said Kamoto, attracting another round of applause from the Queens.

Captain of the side Caroline Mtukule-Ngwira was all thanks for the gestures from Airtel, Friends of Queens and government.

“This is the first time we have been accorded such a reception and it is like a dream. We know we have not achieved what the nation wanted but this is going to inspire us to do even better next time,” said Mtukule.

Nam president Rosy Chinunda said although the team lost its fifth position to continental rivals South Africa, the Queens still deserved a pat on the back, having produced the best player of the tournament and scored the highest number of goals.

Chiumia announced at the luncheon that the First Lady was preparing something big for the Queens.

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39 thoughts on “Pride of Malawi: Queens jet in to a heroines’ welcome, pictorial”

  1. John Paul says:

    Producing best player and scoring more goals is not a trophy. Ndati tingokumbusana mai Chinunda, komanso ngati Malawi yalephera kutenga chikho vuto ndi ma officials a NAM. Stupid…

  2. WE ARE PROUD OF YOU MA QUEENS,KEEP IT UP

  3. Naaah says:

    She should build an Arena ;that will be big surprise for the queens.

  4. Fury Road says:

    Once the government will offer something to these ladies,some one will say ‘why not assisting the poor people,the hospitals bla- bla- bla. Now you are busy castigating the government for not doing something tangible to the Queens so far.Trying to understand malawian is the only way to madness!!!! ‘See my name’

  5. AK says:

    Anyamata anthu akupita ku Swaziland ndipo akakapambana muzachitenso chonchi anthu a Mulungu. A first lady tsopanotu mukuvala bwino monga mai mfumu weniweni.Osati zija mudavala mutaima ndi first lady wa ku America ku America komweko. Mpaka national wear ya chitenje yofika mpaka m’mapazi, national wear ya nyakula mai. Mwaponda pati anzathu kapena cashgate yayamba kuyenda. hahhahahahahahahahaha

  6. Katong'ongo says:

    Quick-fire facts to consider: –
    1. Let’s stop politicizing everything by lying to the nation that it was a surprise welcome by the first lady when in actual fact it was a well calculated move by Grace Chiumia and her master to seize the opportunity for their political propaganda. All along we know Malawian politicians stage some events to dupe those with low IQ who can’t read between the lines. This time around, DPP cadres are busy canvassing for support instead of governing the country while 2019 is still a long way to go.
    2. Let’s not just criticise and make noise while not contributing anything. I suggest that we open an account specifically for the queens and an average Malawian deposit a minimum of MK100 into it. This will translate into MK1.6B for 16 million people.
    3. Netball/sport is a short-term career. Government should consider offering educational scholarships to the queens for the sake of their destiny. Girls wise up and enhance your education. Fame is shortlived. We praise them today, tomorrow we call them all sorts of names.
    4. Finally, I know the first lady will give them (the queens) money. She was treading carefully lest some of you misinterpret it wrongly. Of course she will give 10 times what has been given. This is the first lady I know. Muwona.

  7. Chikadza Kuwani says:

    Zikomo kwambiri Friends of the Queens, Airtel and Madame First Lady. In particular to Mr. Msungama for the expensive machine provided. It made the reception very exciting and befitting the heroic and beautiful queens. Ma Queens you are our pride! Tamvananu kukoma kwambiri.

  8. kate says:

    WEDONE MADAM APM. KOMA SIYANI JUVALA MA GOGOSI SAKUKHALANI. AMENEWO MUMUSIYIRE MKAZI WA VP. YEWO.

  9. Kalimaasamu says:

    We r proud of u our queens welcom

  10. Hitler says:

    A Airtel nanu mwapala. Mukukawapangila phwando azimayiwa asanapume bwino bwino komanso asanasambe. Mukanawapatsa kaye m’pata kuti apume. I’m just thinking.

  11. Lovemaniac 91 says:

    U hav’nt done somethng wealth to cerebrate 4. Mwangotichitisa manyazi basi. Here in exile pipo r jst laughing @ us, coz of wat u hav done. Bola mwabera muchindidwe sopano, mahule inu!

  12. lawrence kutaumbe says:

    Takulandirani ma quiz ndipo timakukondani tangokhala kuti ndife osauka, komabe limbikirani kupanga zabwino.

  13. Denguzman says:

    Gud show Madam Muthalika.

  14. Souja says:

    What did the first lady offer? Ummm something big!! Shame.she want to prepare mapwevupwevu again,GIVE THEM MONEY SO THAT THEY DO WHAT THEY WANT,most of the girls are poor and mapwevupwevu will not help them.

  15. GRM says:

    Thank you our queens. Ife tangopsa tikanachitapo kanthu. You can appreciate queens fighting spirit only if you watched any of their game. Nanga ungomva how can you appreciate?

  16. The real ujeni says:

    The First lady in awkward goggles had nothing to offer, a big thank you should go to friends of the queens who did a fantastic job. A beauty beauty function???? Forsek! These people they do nothing at state house apart from wallowing in luxury, eating their eyes out. You first lady stop politicising netball. As for government, build a state of the art netball arena in the capital and teams like England,Australia, New Zealand and Jamaica can come for friendlies.

  17. Ulunji says:

    Government come in pleas,k180,000.00 that’s from well wishers

  18. zidana says:

    PALIBE CHIMENE APANGA AWA FROM NUMBER 5 TO 6 NDIYE MUZITI ACHITA BWINO MBOLA ZOKHA ZOKHA

  19. mdk says:

    In mukuti shame mwasonkhapo zingati?atengelepo phunzilo

  20. sunderstar says:

    Every thing has a start, this is the start of good things for the team and we believe the corporate World and Ministry of Sport should recognise the queens. The corporate World, thus companies must brand the Queens and help them Financially, the Government must from now onwards budget for the queens annual assignments rather than only football. From the start the queens struggled for sponsorship, until Airtel rescued them they were destined not to go. It is an achivement to finish the group stage un beaten and beating well sponsored teams like South Africa and Wales, They amost beat Jamaica. They lost to South Africa because of Fatigue, the Keys players had played toomany games just to keep the queens on the right path while RSA, New Zeland and Jamaica had a pool of players. What the queens achieved is no mean achievement and it is proper for Malawian and the first lady to recognise these young girls, infact they desrved a Presidential handshake. Those people who are writing against this are doing that out of malice and hatred simply because the first Lady was there, this was not a Political affair the first lady is the wife of the President and being a lady herself needs to support these young girls and winning against well sponsored teams from a background of no sponsorship is something not mean. Malawians lets set aside politics and forge ahead with appraising and building our nation as one, lets support our team and give them the desired sponsorship.

    1. Chenji ku Msika says:

      And many writing bad about the Queens should be Malawi Football players if not Malawi football team supporters.

  21. Masa K says:

    Congrants Muli booh ma Queens

  22. malili says:

    Kukhalangati kuti ndalamazi zachoka kwa anthu a kufuna kwabwino osati Mai Getrude Kukhala ngati iwo anakangoti ndakunyadirani ndimakukondani Basii? Chonde boma do something tio encourage these girls A Grace Chiumia Obama mukutaniko ku Ministry of sports mmalo mo supporter azimai anzako? I thought you were suppossed to be the first person to remind first Lady kuti maluwa is not enough? Malonjezano opanda chiyembekezo no any commitment , Can the Whole First Lady say I will help you wih anything? what do you mean by anything? Ndale basi? so that the Queens should not go back to you and claim? Manyazi akugwireni. Thumb Up! The Well wishers May God Bless You!

  23. Sake Chilling says:

    The Malawi Queens are indeed the pride of Malawi in so far as sports is concerned.

  24. Eye Witness says:

    It’s 180,000.00 x 2=360,000.00. Airtel 180,000.00 each, friends of queens 180,000.00. The first lady is preparing something.
    The ladies will also receive their allowances.

    Nde mukuti yachepa?

  25. Fashion Police says:

    Koma a first lady ma glasswo. Kodi alibe fashion adviser?

  26. football ndi netball sititha. timadziwa kuba basi says:

    this is funny. the women lost crucial games and are a step down in the world rankings. it’s very important to tell them that they failed us or they will start thinking failiure is the acceptable norm. osawabisila ayi, awuzeni zoona amenewo. ndatopa ndikudulidwa msokho zopanda pake ine

  27. amina says:

    I wish you said each player will pocket one million kwacha for what they have done through thick and thin. They did this in favour of the sport and their country. Honestly these are fighters. Their training for the trip was met with hurdles and here they are being sixth is not a joke. How many countries participated and how many were given every support from day one of training? Questions are so many. Lets applaud what the Queens have done as a nation. Government pliz assist these women as you do with feetball men.

  28. Tiyanjane says:

    Zikomo mayi Getrude powonesa chikondi cha mayi polandila atsikana athu okondeka. Ine koma ndikanakunyadirani koposa mukanawalandira ma girls athu nanununso muli mu chilundu cha Queens Colours. Ndinawona ngati munali wrongly dressed for the funtion. Koma tawonga kuti mwajipeleka kovwila basungwana withu abo.

  29. well done ma queens we will

  30. Tamanda Sauka says:

    Congrats. As a lady i know girls you need some good sexual service as well. Greese athiridwe basi. Lija ndi kale munachoka kumudzi. Mudzipereke monga mene munadzipilekera ky Australia. Kulipira mkati. All the best

  31. Truck says:

    Wow ! Queens very beautiful you make Malawians proud! Keep it up raising the Malawian Flag high!Go ! Queens Go!

  32. Iwe ukuti shame waikapo zingati zako? Zinazi kumayamika anthu akapanga mbali yawo. Shane to you becks for doing nothing

  33. Welldone our queens!I think the govt should go a step further by rewarding the players handsomely.K180 000 is not encouraging to the girls.Iyo ndalama yacepa as compared to what you give the useless national football team that has never qualified to even Africa Cup of Nations over many, many years.Iyo ndalama ipasa mphwayi!I think the First lady will do something about that.She looks concerned and caring for the womenfolk.

  34. Welldone our queens!I think the govt should go a step further by rewarding the players handsomely.K180 000 is not encouraging to the girls.Iyo ndalama yacepa as compared to what you give the useless national football team that never qualified even Africa Cup of Nations.Iyo ndalama ipasa mphwayi!

  35. mulibwanji? says:

    Shame….Shame and total shame! These players had to sweat blood knocking on one door of the so called Caring corporate organisations to another. Ministry if Sports is a total failure and Shame in this country, with the minister responsible very dull and inconsiderate. She was quite as if she did not know that the ladies wanted money for their camping, allowances and upkeep. Sports council did not show any commitment to assist these ladies. No wonder even a single government official was not present when the girls left for this tournament.

    To the Queens, musapusitsike ndi zonsezi apanga anthu pofikazi. Where was the so called Our Queens our Pride group when you were suffering? Where was this embarrasing group whe team failed to go to Botswana? My thumbs up goes to Airtel Malawi for the tireless support to the Queens, despite the hostile business environment in this country by the so called caring government, whose officials hide whenever the team is suffering. Airtel yamenya nkhondo then noonse Mimba phwi, zipewa kuno muli mukukachingamira Queens. Koma anthu mulibe manyazi???

    Lastly, its only in Malawi where people celebrate failure. No wonder this country will never develop. Timawombera mmanja zitsiru. Queens did not achieve anything. If anything, they have brought with them an embarrassing results. I know people mundinena, munditukwana etc but am saying facts here. Airtel if you donated that in one of the hospitals? Mukanadalitsika forever. Inu ama Queens Our pride, musamapange zinthu poti Mwayi ndi mmbalewanga ndimpangire fundraising ponamiza anthu. SHAME ON YOU.

    To the government and the so called corporate organisations, who only leap where your friends have sowed, chitani manyazi…..anthu omvetsa chisoni. Busy boasting billions of profits but failing to assist the Queens. ..?

    Finally to the Queens and NAM. Put your house in order. We have a team which can pull surprises if there are no internal fights. We have the best coaching panel ever, Agwiritseni. Mukayikapo nsanje, sitidzapita patsogolo.

    I Rest My Case.

    1. Mbiyazodooka says:

      I cant agree more with you. The team indeed needs support from talent identification, preparations for tournaments to participation in tournaments. You dont just come in because the ill prepared Queens have defied the odds. On the collective team performance, I agree we did no better than the previously although there are signs of quality players who can be nurtured and supported to do more.

  36. chindez says:

    Keep the flag high we aere prooud of you

  37. becks says:

    Shame shame. Is that money enough to reward them?

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