Author: malawinewsnow

Man held on to bag of flour to survive Lake Malawi boat disaster

RUMPHI (BBC News) –A 67-year-old man has said he escaped death by clinging to a bag of maize flour after the boat he was on capsized on Lake Malawi. Gracias Kondowe was among 54 passengers who police say survived after the boat overturned in stormy weather on Sunday. Five people drowned while 11 are still missing, police said. The boat was packed with worshippers returning from Easter celebrations when it capsized in the remote Rumphi district in northern Malawi. Mr Kondowe told Malawi’s privately owned Zodiac radio station that heavy winds buffeted the boat about 15 minutes into their...

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Gerald Phiri on a year’s contract as Malawi coach

BLANTYRE (Frank Kandu, BBC Sport) –The Football Association of Malawi (Fam) has appointed Gerald Phiri on a year’s contract to lead the national team. Fam says it will continue its search to for a foreign coach. The former international striker’s first task will be an Africa Nations Championship (CHAN) qualifier against Madagascar in April. “It is a big challenge and we have to sit down and focus very well and see what we can do,” he said. “We need to come up with a system which should help us win games because in the past we have been struggling.”...

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Malawi’s plans for major electoral reform are way overdue

ZOMBA (Jimmy Kainja, University of Malawi) – Malawi is set for a major overhaul of its winner-takes-all electoral system with far-reaching implications for the country, if ongoing efforts to reform the system bear fruit. Any changes in the voting system will represent the biggest overhaul of the country’s electoral system since it became a multiparty state in the mid 1990s. This followed the end of one-party dictatorship under Kamuzu Banda, the country’s first post-colonial leader and “president for life”. A special Malawi Law Commission was given the task of reforming the country’s electoral laws. Following a year of investigation,...

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Zuma is walking toward the door marked ‘dictatorship’ – plunges the knife ON South Africa’s democracy

CAPE TOWN (Richard Calland) South Africa has reached a crisis point in its political history that’s been looming on the horizon for more than a year. In the dark of night – literally – President Jacob Zuma demonstrated his ruthlessness by firing finance minister, Pravin Gordhan, amid a 20-person reshuffle of his government. The magnitude of what has happened shouldn’t be underestimated. The Save South Africa campaign, echoing the sentiments of the country’s progressive-minded constitutionalists, described Gordhan’s dismissal as “an outrage”. There are two major concerns. The first is the impact on the economy, the second is a political...

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Malawi urged to ban cheap potent alcohol destroying young lives

Four years ago, Malawian teenager Anthony had ambitions to become a doctor, but in his last year at school he was diagnosed with liver cirrhosis after becoming hooked on cheap, strong liquor. Campaigners in the southern African country say potent alcohol – ten times the strength of normal beer – is destroying young lives, potentially impacting the country’s development. They are calling for a complete ban on the liquor. “Back then I never thought of the consequences,” said Anthony who asked not to give his second name. “We used to sneak out with friends to go drinking since it...

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