Scores of people gathered at Mbenderana Village on Friday afternoon to witness the departure of one of the active young women who was also Chairperson for Chikwawa District Sex Workers Alliance.
Evelyn Mkumbwa, commonly known as ‘Nambewe’, died on the night of Wednesday, May 9, 2018 during her one year tenure of office as Chairperson of Chikwawa Sex Workers Alliance which was formed March 2018.
The alliance was founded to protect young women and girls in sex work industry from various abuses.
According to information obtained from her step brother, James Friday, the deceased started suffering from Pneumonia last year in November and she has been admitted to Chikwawa District Hospital on several occasions.
‘‘My sister had been admitted to the hospital for several times, and in this month of May, she was admitted to Chikwawa hospital where on Wednesday night we received sad news that Evelyn had died,” said Friday.
Speaking during the funeral ceremony, Senior Group Village Headman Mbenderana told the gathering that Evelyn was a good person who helped the community in different ways and that she would greatly be missed.
‘‘I have known our departed sister long way back. And her participation in various community activities here just enhanced her visibility. She was so dedicated in helping other people in our community,’’ said Senior Group Mbenderana.
The Senior Group Headman added that the community had lost a good person who had left a huge gap difficult to find a replacement.
In a separate interview, one of the sex workers, Aunt Shabini, who runs a bar at Chikwawa Boma Market, described Evelyn as their defender.
‘‘Evelyn defended and protected a lot of sex workers by ensuring that our affairs as sex workers were properly harmonized. When we faced challenges she was the one in the forefront helping us, she tried to make sure that our rights are not violated in any form by customers. We will not forget her,’’ said Aunt Shabini.
Aunt Shabini added that as sex workers in the district, they were deeply saddened with the death of Evelyn whom she described as a pillar and a good leader.
Before 4:00 pm on Friday, the body of Mkumbwa was lowered into a grave behind Chikwawa Muslim School where a lot of people flocked to pay their last respect as tears filled their eyes in disbelief that Nambewe had gone.
Some of the women start twerking in celebration of her life.
Apart from members of the community, government officers, traders and representatives from various political parties attended the funeral.
There was no immediate comment from Chikwawa District Aids Coordinating Committee (DAC).
Evelyn Mkumbwa died at the age of 34 and is survived by a daughterFollow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :