Bangwe chief keeps his community’s self-sponsored 6 July celebration alive 11 years on

The village community of Headman William of Bangwe — off Robert Mugabe Highway at Chikunda, has kept its self-sponsored special Independence Celebration on July 6 since 2010, initiated by their traditional leader in conjunction with his well-wishing subjects.

The community chooses a working committee after every two years that mobilises funds which help them to finance special luncheons as well as celebration activities performed by volunteer artists of the village.

Village Headman William addressing his subjects

Carrying on the tradition on Tuesday, VGE William said the idea was mooted 10 years ago when he sympathized that not many people were able to travel to Kamuzu Stadium to attend national Independence Day celebrations — thus denying the younger generation from appreciating the importance of the day.

“This event in my community fosters unity and preaches for peace to reign amongst ourselves while teaching the youths that this is a very important day in the history of our country,” he said.

“In the past, during former President, late Dr. Hastings Kamuzu’s reign, we used to have national day of prayer on the eve of 6 July which Kamuzu himself attended before the main celebration at Kamuzu Stadium.

“Then we would have other celebrations at regional, district and community levels — through which it was inculcated amongst us to bestow honour to this special day.”

He added that it was so pleasing that his subjects takes the event seriously through personal contributions and that the day is enjoyed by all spiced by inclusion of traditional beer, Masese — also brewed by volunteers.

During speeches, VGE William applauded his subjects for keeping the legacy alive and paid tribute to his fellow founders of the initiative while at the same time schooling the youths the significance of 6 July.

“Be very proud of this day because it brought us our Malawian identity 57 years ago and is part of this country’s rich history,” he said.

Other guests included Police officers from Bangwe Police Station, whose Sub-Inspector Gerald Kandaya told the gathering to celebrate the day responsibly and to always maintain peace in the community.

“We are there to offer your security and safety but it is also your obligation to always respect the law.

“We plead with you that in the event that you have caught someone breaking the law, do not take the law into your hands through mob justice because that is illegal and attracts heavy punishment by the courts.

“Hand over such criminals to us because we use them to trace other offenders, who might have been their accomplices. It is important for us to interrogate these criminals so that we learn how to perform our duties better — all in the name of securing and saving our community.”

Kandaya also implored on the people to continue observing CoVID-19 preventive measures, warning them that “the pandemic is still amongst us and we must help the health authorities to manage it”.

“These are difficult times but together we can conquer the pandemic if we are very strict in keeping wearing of masks, washing hands with soap regularly and other measures prescribed by the health authorities.”

The community’s young up-and-coming music artist, 19-year-old Christina Chizombwe mesmerized the fans when she performed some of her 6 tracts she has worked on to be recorded into an album — ‘Cindow, My Love’.

She said she is currently composing her 7th track and the album is being recorded at her brothers studio K Beats based in the community.

The gathering, especially kids, were marvelously thrilled by her performance and gave her a huge round of applause after each song — wishing it could have been just her sole concert.

Other performances were comedy but educative drama, mock tug of war, traditional dances and a netball game.

William Village is in Traditional Authority Machinjiri in Blantyre but the VGE also invited other traditional leaders such as Group Chiefs Chilambe and Angoni from close neighbouring Thyolo District.

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2 years ago

Smart village head William and his people

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