Former president Joyce Banda has written a hard hitting letter to ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) director of Elections Ben Phiri over his offensive remarks to the former First Lady Patricia Shanil Dzimbiri.
In the strongly worded letter, Banda said she had forgiven Phiri numerous times before but she will never forgive him for insulting Dzimbiri and for personally insulting the former Head of State as a Yao.
“Honourable Dr. Shanil Dzimbiri is a dignified woman, a woman who has served her country well with integrity, a woman of substance and in my opinion, she was one of the best First Ladies we have had.
“Men and women of Malawi will not allow you to abuse an innocent woman who has done so much for our country,” reads the letter in part.
Banda says that Malawian men are respectful to women, they honour them, saying they have even opened space and given full support to Malawian women so they too can participate in the leadership to the highest positions of the land.
“It is for this reason that I will not allow few sick ones like you to demean women the way you have done,” she says.
She then schools Phiri that Dzimbiri is not a Yao by tribe, saying Phiri’s mother is Yao who originally came from Tabu village in Domasi, Zomba.
The letter comes barely a day after Dzimbiri rejected an apology from Phiri unless he went back to Balaka west constituency where he made the offensive remarks and make the apology before the same audience he addressed.
Women rights activist Emma Kaliya has since told Dzimbiri to seek legal redress on the matter.
Both the DPP and First Lady Gertrude Mutharika have reprimanded Phiri over the remarks in which he said former president Bakili Muluzi divorced her because she is not good in bed