Thousands of Malawians from all walks of life paid their last respects to Barbra, late wife to business mogul, Dr. Thom Mpinganjira.
The late Barbra Abigail Mpinganijra died at Mwaiwathu Private Hospital in the wee hours of Friday, January 4 2019 and was laid to rest on Saturday, January 5 2019 at Mpinganjira’s home village of Chide Village, T/A Bvumbwe in Thyolo District.
The funeral programme started on Saturday with a Church service at Sunnyside SDA Church, where the late Barbra Abigail Mpinganijra was a senior Dorcas member. The sermon was delivered by Fackson Kuyama, Malawi Seventh Day Adventist Church Union president before the body was taken to Bvumbwe for the funeral service and burial.
Delivering eulogy on behalf of President Peter Mutharika, Local Government and Rural Development Minister, Kondwani Nankhumwa, said the President was deeply saddened by the passing of Barbra Mpinganjira and he sent his deepest sympathies to the FDH bank boss and the entire bereaved family.
“The President informed me that the Mpinganjiras were his closest friends and he was deeply shocked to learn of the untimely death of Mrs. Mpinganjira. He said he wished he had personally attended the funeral service if it were not for other pressing state matters,” said Nankhumwa, who is also governing Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) vice president for southern region, MP for Mulanje Central and Leader of the House in Malawi Parliament.
Nankhumwa said the President had delegated him to deliver a special message of appreciation to the Mpinganjiras for complementing government’s efforts towards social and economic development through their various business investments.
“Dr. Mpinganjira and his late wife established huge business in Malawi, notably the FDH Group of Companies, which employ hundreds of our youths today. The President has delegated me to inform you that he does not take such initiatives for granted but wish to sincerely thank you, the Mpinganjiras, for the huge contribution that you make to the social and economic development of our country. You have the capability and at liberty to invest your wealth abroad but you decided to help your own country. That’s patriotism,” he said.
Nankhumwa said he was also personally heartbroken to hear about the death of Barbra Mpinganjira on Friday, explaining he had visited the Mpinganjiras at their private home in Blantyre a few days ago and that she was in high spirits.
“For me personally, I am in deep shock; I am emotionally overwhelmed as I can hardly believe she will no longer be with us. We loved her but God loved her most; may her soul rest in everlasting peace,” said Nankhumwa.
He said the late Barbra was a remarkable woman who always held her head high and gave endlessly to many people, including those that were not her relations. Above all, he said the late Barbra was had a calm personality and always gave good advice to various people.
Other eulogies were delivered by Minister of Agriculture, Joseph Mwanamveka, on behalf of Mulhakho wa Lhomwe, DPP regional governor for the southern region and Deputy Homeland Security Affairs, Charles Mchacha and firebrand politician, Brown Mpinganjira, on behalf of the Mpinganjira family.
Other high-profile people who attended the funeral service included former President Dr. Bakili Muluzi, his son and Minister of Health, Atupele Muluzi, Minister of Information, Henry Mussa, Chief Secretary to Government, Lloyd Muhara and UTM Director of Strategy, Michael ‘Manganya’ Usi, among others.