During the week, supporters of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) engaged another gear in the freedom of expression drive when they had the first leg of marches, the Restoration of Democratic Justice. The march in Blantyre on Monday was fascinating and strange in a number of ways. In the first place, the marchers presented their…

The Constitutional Court, comprising High Court judges Healey Potani, Ivy Kamanga, Redson Kapindu, Mike Tembo and Dingiswayo Madise, on Monday made the landmark ruling that nullified the May 21 2019 polls. The ruling, ending months of a stand-off, was followed, not only by Malawians but people from other lands, if the international media coverage it…

Rick Deja talks Mw music

Rick Deja is a saxophonist of repute. The American is no strange name in Malawi music. His research on indigenous Malawi music is unparalleled. Currently, the acoustic guitarist, composer, educator and ethnomusicologist is based at the University of Cape Town, South Africa. In the 90s he worked with several Malawian musicians including Wambali Mkandawire, Erik…

Rare acoustic night at JCC

Thursday nights are no longer the same for Blantyre music lovers since the birth of Sounds of Malawi at the Jacaranda Cultural Centre (JCC). Last Thursday, it was a rare experience when JCC introduced collaboration nights. Saxophonist Rick Deja shared the stage with ‘bush’ musician Waliko Makhala and acoustic guitar maestro Snowden Ibu brought sounds…

January 23 2020 Two interesting things happened this week. On the one hand, First Capital Bank Group chairperson Hitesh Anadkat handed over a prison block to Blantyre Prison (often called Chichiri). The banker, whose bank has branches in five other countries, built the K350 million 384-bed block to ease congestion. On the other, the Anti-corruption…

Ndalema’s penchant metal art

Mbayani, like many Malawi ghettos, is a crucible of activities. Hammers hitting nails onto wood to bring out sofa sets, beds, dining sets and, well, coffins. The rattling welding machines shape door and window frames, wheelbarrows, pots and even metal buckets. All that while, some are shouting on top of their voices to woo customers…

Philanthropist decries prison congestion

Philanthropist Hitesh Anadkat says government red tape and magistrates’ propensity to punish all convicts with custodial sentences is worsening congestion in the country’s prisons. Anadkat, who is First Capital Bank Group chairperson, said this yesterday during the handover of a K350 million prison block he has constructed at Blantyre Prison, commonly known as Chichiri. He…

16 January 2020 As the nation waits for the panel of five judges to deliver their judgment in the presidential elections case, drama continues to unfold. It all started as a rumour on social media that certain interested parties were trying hard to oil the palms of the judges to influence justice. It is now…

2019 and its losses

She trod in unexpected places. She did jembe and konga drums. She did drums and she did visekese, that scratching percussion. And, she danced, sang. Once, on stage at the French Cultural Centre, she danced. Her sister, Ethel Kamwendo Banda shouted in awe as she displayed her art and skill: “Sister! Sister!” She was Beatrice…

January 2, 2020 The Malawi Human Rights Commission (MHRC) announced last week its investigations into the Msundwe saga revealed that 13 women were raped, one girl defiled and three under-18 women were sexually assaulted. The police acts are shameful, to say the least, given the fact that the men in uniform are supposed to protect…

December 26 2019 So, December is drawing on a close to end the year 2019. Phew! There is no better feeling of hope than when the prospect of entering a new year. January 1 presents high prospects of being better people. Every new year, bad people think about how they can be good people and…

December 19 2019 So, the Public Affairs Committee (PAC) on Wednesday ushered in a new executive! The election saw Monsignor Dr Patrick Thawale taking over from Reverend Felix Chingota to lead a new committee for the quasi-religious body. Established in 1992 by the religious community and other pressure groups to enter into dialogue with Kamuzu…

December 12, 2019 It would appear Malawians had an early Christmas gift when Malawi Congress Party (MCP) president Lazarus Chakwera said on Wednesday he was ready to meet Peter Mutharika to try and resolve the current political impasse the country is facing. That came out after he met the leadership of the Public Affairs Committee…

December 5 2019 So, as I write this entry, the expectation is that the hearing of the presidential election challenge case would be concluded on December 6. Judge Healey Potani, leading the five judges hearing the case, said in a previous session that after hearing is concluded, they would have 45 days to present their…

Earlier this year, the International Food Policy Research Institute (Ifpri) said Malawi has the highest maize price volatility compared to other sub-Saharan countries like Ethiopia, Kenya, Mozambique, Rwanda and South Africa, among others. You dispute that at your own peril. Primarily, Ifpri says that the volatility is the result of lack of transparency on the…

I find Symon Vuwa Kaunda to be one of those really interesting politicians. He is one such politician who appears to be courting disaster. Yet, Vuwa somehow finds his way out, the way Harry Houdini cheated death. Figure this: In February last year, Vuwa was an adviser to President Peter Mutharika. One day, as he…

Earlier this year, the International Food Policy Research Institute (Ifpri) said Malawi has the highest maize price volatility compared to other sub-Saharan countries like Ethiopia, Kenya, Mozambique, Rwanda and South Africa, among others. You dispute that at your own peril. Primarily, Ifpri says that the volatility is the result of lack of transparency on the…

The wave of violence that ensued in Liwonde demonstrates how much out of hand the intolerance is getting. It is bad that religious bigotry and animosity have grown to levels that we will all live to regret. Reports indicated that Muslims and Christians engaged in a bloody fight over a decision by the education administration…

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