Chakwera leads in rememberance of Kamuzu: Malawi founding president

Malawi Congress Party (MCP) president Lazarus Chakwera and his party alliance partners are leading commemorations to remember Ngwazi Hastings Kamuzu Banda, the founding president of Malawi who died in November 1997amid heightened tension ahead of the Constitutional Court sanctioned presidential election.

MCP’s Chakwera and his runningmate Saulos Chilima  at the Kamuzu Mausoleum in Lilongwe
Chakwera lays his wreaths on Kamuzu resting place
MCP president Chakwera and his runningmate Saulos Chilima during  the Kamuzu Day commemoration prayers at the Kamuzu Mausoleum in Lilongwe
Kamuzu Mausoleum in Lilongwe

MCP’s major partner in the Tonse alliance Saulos Chilima, the country estranged vice-president  also attended the commemorations at mausoleum in Lilongwe  where Kamuzu—the country’s ruler from independence in 1964 to 1994—now rests.

Family members of the country’s founding president honoured him by laying wreaths at his mausoleum in the capital city while government officials and other political parties stayed away from the function.

Nephew to Kamuzu, Ken Kandodo remembered the founding president as selfless, who faced jail term just to give Malawi independence.

“Kamuzu loved his country, this is why he developed the country to this level,” said Kandodo.

Political commentator Wiseman Chijere Chirwa said Kamuzu Day holiday is vital because Kamuzu Banda remains relevant to Malawi.

“Kamuzu did not only bring us the independence but appointed people in public positions on merit. He gave people responsibilities on merit,” said Chirwa.

Minister of Information Mark Botomani said the government recognises the great job Kamuzu Banda did to Malawi as the first Head of State, saying this is why the government set aside May 14 as Kamuzu Day holiday.

However critics of Kamuzu say his legacy was tainted with his brutal regime, his iron fist rule, the killings of his political opponents, detention of his critics and forced gifts from poor people.

History of Kamuzu Day

Kamuzu Banda was born near Kasungu in Malawi (then British Central Africa). His date of birth is unknown, as it took place when there was no birth registration. Even though it was assumed he was born in March or April 1898, his official birthday was observed on May 14th.

After receiving much of his education overseas, Banda returned home (then British Nyasaland) to speak against colonialism and advocate independence.

Banda was formally appointed as prime minister of Nyasaland in 1963 and led the country to independence on July 6th 1964. He chose the name Malawi for the fledgeling nation,  after the Maravi, an old name of the Nyanja people that inhabit the area.

Two years later he proclaimed Malawi a republic with himself as president. Under a new constitution, he consolidated power, making Malawi a one-party state under the Malawi Congress Party (MCP). In 1971, he became President for Life of Malawi.

Banda’s control over Malawi started to wane after the collapse of the Soviet Union. His vehement anti-communist stance had led to support from western countries. Those countries would only continue to give aid to Malawi if he implemented a series of reforms.

In 1993, mounting pressure from within and from the international community forced Banda to hold a referendum on whether to maintain the one-party state. The referendum resulted in 64% in favour of multiparty democracy. Banda ran in the first democratic presidential election in 1994 and was defeated by Bakil Muluzi.

Former president Bingu wa Mutharika’s administration reinstituted the Kamuzu Day on May 14 and scrapped off Freedom Day—the day the Bakili Muluzi administration set to reflect on the June 14 1993 National Referendum that ushered in multiparty democracy.

Banda died in South Africa on 25 November 1997, aged 98.

The prayers have been organised by the Nkhoma Synod of the CCAP.

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Atsogoleri
Atsogoleri
1 year ago

Kodi Kamuzu amadziwa democracy?

Forgive them
Forgive them
1 year ago

Despite some human rights offenses,kamuzu had a vision,bakili is an idiot,Peter is an idiot,these 2 have a grudge with a dead person,they never built anything to celebrate for in their presidency,Bingu never said anything bad about kamuzu but he new the weakness
Ok Kamuzu,all he did was to emulate his vision of development,if Bingu had taken over from Kamuzu,we could be somewhere by now

Maliko Thodi
1 year ago
Reply to  Forgive them

You are the biggest idiot for celebrating a brutal dictator.

The Dangerous Protocol.
The Dangerous Protocol.
1 year ago
Reply to  Maliko Thodi

Ana inu simukidziwa Kali konse, ana obadwila m [email protected] maliko Thodi

The Patriot
The Patriot
1 year ago

I find it hard to celebrate the style of his rulership. I admire his achievements and I insist that in 30 years more could have been achieved. In a country full of mediocrity where the bare minimum is cause of massive celebration Kamuzi is therefore seen as an achiever. His human rights record is the worst. Nothing to admire there. Celebrating him somehow could also imply exonerating even this worst part of him. Our fathers were chased from the south to work in the north just because they are northerners. Our fathers had to change names to sound more Chichewa… Read more »

Ncombo
1 year ago

Sato sunakhwime pancombo. You don’t know the type of aflications Which were there. Seeing the picture of Banda reminds me of my uncle who was brutary murdered by mcp . Those relatives joining mcp they are there to revenge in future. Wait and see. They can’t revenge outside the camp ,they know nobody will defend them

Sato
Sato
1 year ago

We see relatives of those you say were affcted afflicted by Banda regime working with MCP so should we say they don’t know what happened. Muluzi is a proponent of this thinking line but his achilles is that he didnot resign from MCP to show that MCP was evil. Let noone be deceived because people time and seasons change and the DPP has to account for its time on the helm. The sins MCP will not absolve the sins of DPP.

Bloody thirsty
1 year ago

Over my dead body. Celebrating this murderer. Better to remember 4 Cabinet ministers he murdered than this dictator. Worse than Idi Amin and Milton Obote in Uganda
Chakwera galu iwe

Zagwa
Zagwa
1 year ago

completely useless and satanic, why praising a dictator who killed, and whose rule millions of Malawians suffered. stupid people!

The Dangerous Protocol.
The Dangerous Protocol.
1 year ago

The good thing is, all those who say bad things of Kamuzu they were told by Bakili Muluzi who wanted to paint a bad picture of Kamuzu just to win and or put himslf in power so that he can destroy the beautiful Country as it was. Most of comments here are of those. Bakili Muluzi and even all these old in DPP you see them like this today, they don’t tell you that they were sent to good school under Kamuzu sponsorship! You see? So you young boys and girls of today, you don’t know how sweet this Country… Read more »

Jose
Jose
1 year ago

Komaamalawi opanda vision mulipo kulowa ntchito ya propaganda yoyankha pano backing darkness.Chakwera and SK C.are the light of malawi mukugwira ntchito ya satana.malawians have the final judgement not chilima or chakwera.mwatenga running mate otchuka ku mmwera kokha.kumpoto zero pakati zero.mwaluza kale.3.8 million votes against 3.1 million votes you are joking.you have no where to get extra votes if you do your foolishness to attempt multiple voting muyalukanso.paja kusamva tili teady to take you face by face on voting day.

Maliko Thodi
1 year ago
Reply to  Jose

You missed a couple of statistics classes. You are assuming just because one belongs to a certain region definitely votes a certain way. You will be disappointed.

Harvey Spectre
1 year ago

Sure let’s approad a dictator and killer for votes. This boy is stupid!!

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