Malawi’s Joyce Banda traces her Lhomwe roots: ‘My gandfather Thipa is originally from Phalombe’

President Mrs. Joyce Banda has disclosed that her grandfather Beyadi Chimwele Thipa is originally from Phalombe district and only moved to settle in Domasi, Zomba because he was deployed into the defence force as a soldier.

The revelation could not come at a right moment than this when the Lomwes across the country are set to celebrate fourth anniversary of the founding of Mulhakho wa Alhomwe.

Since its inception some four years back, the Lomwe grouping has proved a key political college as it consolidates power in strategic districts of Thyolo, Mulanje, Phalombe, Chiradzulu, Zomba and part of Machinga that are largely populated in equal measure.

The whole revelation was started by Traditional Authority Chiwalo who told huge crowds that gathered at Dindi School ground that people of Phalombe have all reasons to celebrate Banda’s presidency because she is originally a member of his clan.

President Banda donating the maize floor.-Photo by Living Kalimanjira

“I’m Thipa the 10th and this is where grandfather of the president Beyadi Chimwele Thipa was born. This is not political but a fact, let all people know that JB is a descendant of Chiwalo clan.

“Beyadi was taken by the Malawi KAR to join the defence force that is where he got married and the two gave birth to Edith who was married to Mr. Mtila a police officer and it is the Mtila family where Joyce and her siblings were born,” chief Chiwalo the 10th narrated the account.

In her remarks, President Banda who was visiting drought affected areas in the district, said she has known all along that she has Lomwe roots but said she was discouraged to discuss the matter in public for political reasons.

She distributed fortified bags of maize flour to at least 500 families that have been hardly hit by the hunger situation.

President Banda said the food distribution programme would be implemented in almost all the affected areas in the country.

“I have been to Salima, Balaka, Nkolokoti Blantyre, and here Phalombe. I have instructed my team to also do the same across the country. But the main reason I came here was to relocate the birth place of one of my grandparents and I’m relieved to see my relatives.

“It will be very unwise of me therefore to abandon the people of Phalombe and Mulanje. To all Malawians let’s not lose hope we will survive and during your free time please read Joshua 1:1-10,” said Banda who was accompanied by the first gentleman Richard Banda and several government and party officials.

President Banda and officials at the function in Phalombe.-Photo by Living Kalimanjira
Truck offloading the maize floor.-Photo by Living Kalimanjira
Crowds at the rally. -Photo by Living Kalimanjira

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