Malawians living in South Africa have launched an association at a function held at the New World CAFE, in Johannesburg last Sunday, that also saw the introduction of an interim executive committee.
Called the Association for Malawians in South Africa (AMSA), the group aims at safeguarding Malawians socio-economic and cultural welfare.
“AMSA has been and will continue to enhance social intercourse and networking among Malawians in South Africa thereby reducing social isolation as well as promote information sharing, enhance cultural understanding and learning between Malawi and South Africa,” chairperson Ms Priscilla Mwasinga told Nyasa Times.
She said AMSA is keen to contribute to development initiatives in Malawi through various programmes and work in collaboration with various agencies, diaspora organisations involved with charity work in Malawi and South Africa.
“Our role as Association is to also encourage our members to play a continuous active role in the South Africa community beside their usual duties. We will always have set of volunteers who will participate in helping with matters that concern our society.”
Commenting on the same, Lawrence Mphepo the deputy chairperson of the association said the objective is to act as an umbrella body which aims at creating an open forum through which Malawians residing in South Africa can freely and voluntarily express their identity and pursue social-economic activities for their own enhancement.
Present during the launch was advisor Frank Mlotchwa, second deputy chairperson Walter Longwe, Treasure Mrs Josephine Nyirenda, Religious advisor Bishop Nick Magola, Association secretary Ms Nellie Phiri and other executive members.
Ulemu Matenda commented that the association will be of great significance as it will give Malawians a sigh of relief whenever they are stranded.
“When we are stranded we don’t have anywhere to seek assistance but now we know where we can go when we are in problems”, he said.
Hundreds of Malawians live in South Africa and many are trekking there after fleeing the economic meltdown at home.
In 2008 foreigners including Malawians in South Africa were killed and some displaced in xenophobic protests by the South African citizens. The assailants were protesting against the presence of foreigners in South Africa, claiming they took away their jobs among other things.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :