Chakwera attends Cyclone Freddy memorial service

By Alex Chitwere

Mulanje, March 27: President Lazarus Chakwera on Wednesday joined the clergy and Malawians in a service of worship, commemorating one year since Tropical Cyclone Freddy hit most parts of the southern region.

The service, held at Mulanje Stadium in Mulanje, one of the districts heavily affected by the effects of cyclone, was conducted under the theme: ‘Malawi: a resilient nation towards recovery.’

Chakwera said it was important to hold the event to honour the lives that were lost as a result of the tropical cyclone, acknowledging that some of the victims were productive people who supported their families.

“There is need to honour them by being productive. There are others that have the urge to ignite internal fights but we need to realize that it is better to unite as one because when things like these happen, they affect all of us,” said Chakwera.

Minister of Natural Resources and Climate Change, Michael Usi said that in conducting the memorial service, it was a learning curve for Malawians to realize the need to honour the fallen heroes and also give hope to the survivors.

In his remarks, Paramount Chief Kaduya called for continued support for people in the affected areas on their road to recovery, saying dry spells experienced this year pose a major threat to the process.

“We have been receiving assistance through the Department of Disaster Management Affairs, but I must say that we will need more because most people will not harvest enough food because of the dry spells,” Kaduya said.

During the sermon moderated by Reverend Anderson Juma, a candle lighting ceremony preceded preaching by Right Reverend Bizwick Nkhoma, General Secretary of the Church of Central Africa Presbyterian General Synod and Sheikh Swalley Chilundu of Muslim Association of Malawi.

There were also performances by the Ndirande Anglican Voices, Ethel Kamwendo Banda and Mulanje Muslim women, among others.

Tropical Cyclone Freddy hit some parts of the southern region in Malawi in March 2023, causing havoc and leading to loss of property and lives while several others had various degrees of injuries.

Some of the notable figures who graced the event included Archbishop Thomas Luke Msusa of Blantyre Archdiocese, Enlightened Christian Gathering Leader Prophet Shepherd Bushiri, Public Affairs Committee Chairperson Fr. Patrick Thawale and Malawi Council of Churches Chairperson Rev. Billy Gama.

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