31 March 2020
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Chikondi Chimala

Chikondi Chimala

Dowa, August 22, 2019: National Association of Young People Living with HIV (y+) has established district structures and encourage young people living with HIV to come out in the open.

Speaking during a leadership meeting on Tuesday, Executive Chairperson, Violet Lindiwe Banda said that there aim is to is introduce its structures national wide and Dowa will be among the beneficiary districts.

She said the project is mostly focusing on the young people living with HIV in the district who are shy to come out and those that have stopped taking their treatment.

 “We are emphasizing on having strong youths and see those young people coming out despite being HIV positive and help others on the issues of adherence and how they should live a positive health life,” Executive Chairperson added.

She said that they have targets that are supposed to be achieved so the need to involve the young people to achieve these targets.

“We had 90:90 targets and now we have 95:95 which the UN AIDS settled cannot be achieved without involving the youths because they are also many of them living with HIV,” Banda said.

The Chairperson of the newly elected Y+ committee in Dowa, Charles Dyera said he is very pleased with the organization and is ready to work with his fellow members on the issue of HIV in the district.

“Dowa district has been waiting patiently for this day and we are very happy to have this here and we will reach out to other young people who are living with HIV,” he said.

The project is for three years and Global Fund through Action Aid pumped over K 50 million in it and it is a national wide exercise and Dowa as a district will benefit.

Mzuzu, July 3, 2019: National Oil Company of Malawi Limited (NOCMA) has pledged to help upgrade Mageza Junior Primary School of Mchengautuba in Mzuzu into a modern primary school.

The school, situated about two kilometers from NOCMA’s oil reverse depot in Mchengautuba West, is the least developed of the 41 primary schools in Mzuzu City Education Division, with no permanent structure for learners.

Making the pledge at Mageza Junior Primary School on Tuesday when the company donated 60 iron sheets and 30 bags of cement worth K1 million for classroom block construction, NOCMA Chief Executive Officer, Gift Dulla said his company was ready to support the school on condition that the community also takes a role.

“It is good to see members of this community mobilising themselves to mould bricks for the school block.

“As long as you continue playing your part as Mageza community, I can assure you that NOCMA will willingly help you in fulfilling your dream of developing the school.

“The reason why we say the community should play a role is because it will embrace ownership of the development because they too contributed to its existence,” he said.

Dulla then urged the community to refrain from practices and activities that may threaten security of fuel reserves in the area.

“While we exercise our corporate responsibility, let me take this as an opportunity to ask you as a community around the fuel reserves to be conscious in your daily activities.

“This is so because a slight disturbance on the oil reserves may cause an accident that may lead to loss of life,” he advised.

Acting District Education Manager for Mzuzu City, Harris Mzumara, concurred with Dulla saying community participation was key to long-lasting development.

He said it would be ungratefulness on the part of the community members if they misused building materials provided to them by NOCMA.

“After this donation, we do not expect these materials to be misappropriated. As a community, they know how they suffered for the past three years to acquire help.

“Now that NOCMA has come to aid them with iron sheets and bags of cement, it will be foolish on their part to misuse the materials,” he said.

Mageza Junior Primary School was established in 2015 upon request from community members after being concerned with high school dropout due to long distance to the nearest primary school.

The school, which has four classes of standard one up to four, has 231 learners and six teachers. It has three classroom blocks made of planks with no permanent building.

NOCMA, upon receiving a written request from the Mageza School Committee and Parents and Teachers’ Association, donated 60 iron sheets and 30 bags of cement for completion of a classroom block that the community is constructing.

Rumphi, April 14, 2019: Rumphi residents along Rumphi-Nyika- Chitipa Road project sites have been asked to guard the development against any form of abuse.

The call was made Friday during Health, Safety and Environment whistle stop meetings organized by Rumphi District Council, Police and the contractor, Mota Engil.

Social Safety Consultant, Davie Chilonga said upgrading of the road to bitumen standards costs tax payers a lot of money.

“This project has specific period. So if issues of theft of material creep in it will be costly for government. For example, if you steal diesel, construction machines and vehicles will not be able to work properly due to lack of fuel,” he observed.

Chilonga added that workers will experience delays in getting their pay as the contractor will be hunting for resources elsewhere to seal that gap, it will mean government would pay more for the prolonged period of the project.

“Overall, government will incur more expenses on one project which if there were no issues of theft of project materials, it would have used the resources for other areas that are in dire need of development,” he said.

Director of Public Works at Rumphi District Council, Allan Chitete warned that massive stealing of project materials would lead to a substandard work.

 ‘’We are repeatedly informing the masses in other development meetings in the areas concerned that they should not steal materials for the project, getting involved in promiscuous behavior and to protect minors from all forms of harm,” he explained.     

Acting Paramount Chief Chikulamayembe advised officials that when they are conducting awareness meetings they should involve both the construction workers and the community.

“There is need that when you are doing awareness meetings, you should take on board both the community members and the construction workers for these messages to get to the bottom,’’ Chilonga observed.

  Commenting on the Traditional Leader concerns on the matter, Chilonga told journalists later that the construction firm has delivered the similar messages to its workers and this is an ongoing activity at all projects sites in the district.

Monday, 03 December 2018 14:05

Quote For The Day

Our war is not on any person! We declare war on hunger! We declare war on disease! We declare war on poverty! We declare war on corruption - President Prof. Arthur Peter Mutharika

 

Sunday, 02 December 2018 14:25

Malawi to commemorate World Competition Day

Blantyre, November 29, 2018: The Competition and Fair Trading Commission (CFTC) will lead Malawian consumers, enterprises, institutions and the general public in commemorating World Competition Day on  December 5, 2018 at Gymkana Club in Zomba.

Speaking in an interview with the Malawi News Agency (Mana) on Tuesday, CFTC Spokesperson Angella Kachipapa said the function would be graced by the Minister of Industry, Trade and Tourism, Francis Kasaila.

Kachipapa said the commission will on this day highlight competition laws and regulations institutions need to take into consideration when conducting business.

“The commission decided to join the rest of the world in commemorating World Competition Day to sensitize the general public on restrictive business practices and uncompetitive business practices that affect consumers negatively, “said Kachipapa.

Malawi has been commemorating this day since 2014 under diverse themes and this year, the commemoration will be held under the theme ‘Innovation and Competition in the Malawi Economy’.

Kachipapa added that this year’s commemoration will offer a platform to deliberate upon the contemporary completion law challenges faced by innovation-led economy.

“It will provide a platform to allow meaningful and focused debate by stakeholders and the general public on challenges faced by the innovative led economy,” Kachipapa said.

Blantyre, October 20, 2018: One of the renowned education activists in the country has expressed concern with the contradiction between the pass rate and the pass margin in the just released Malawi Schools Certificate of Education (MSCE) results.

In interview with Malawi News Agency (Mana) on Friday in Blantyre, Dr. Steve Sharra an education activist said although there has been an increase in the pass rate percentage as compared to last year, this year’s results comprised less people that have passed with flying colours.

“When you look at Malawi National Examination Board (MANEB) breakdown, you will discover that there is no one who has scored an aggregate of six points and from six points to 10 points we only have 126 candidates. This tells us that despite the fact that there is an increase in the pass rate, less people have passed very well,” Sharra noted.

He commended MANEB for coming up with the breakdown of points in this year’s results, saying the development is a hallmark of transparency and accountability in the board’s dealings.

“This is the first time when MANEB has given us the real details of what the results look like, the breakdown gives us a clear picture of how the whole process was done,” Sharra added.

He observed that there has been a lot of murmuring on the social media among candidates who wrote the exams, claiming that the marks have not been awarded accordingly.

During a press briefing earlier this week, MANEB mentioned that the results of other 146 candidates have been withheld pending investigations.

According to MANEB, out of 93,469 female students who sat for the exams, only 54,325 passed.

Out of 103,817 male students who sat for the exams, only 70,430 passed, representing 58.12 per cent altogether.

Friday, 19 October 2018 07:36

NGO builds a secondary school in Dedza

Dedza, October 18, 2018: Against All odds Still Standing (AOS), a non-governmental organization is building an ultra-modern well equipped secondary school in Ntakataka Village Traditional Authority (T.A) Kachindamoto in Dedza District, Malawi News Agency has learnt.

Speaking in an interview, CEO and founder of AOS, Fikelephi Jackson said the building of the school is one of the ways of empowering girls and young women in education.

"Our goal is to empower girls and young women in three aspects; education, health and social wellbeing.

We are on a project to rebuild lives and restore hope and dignity of girls and young women who dropped out of school for marriage so that they can go back into school," she said.

Jackson explained that they are building the secondary school in Ntakataka Village after noticing that T.A. Kachindamoto has been active in ending girl child marriages and bringing them back to school.

"T.A. Kachindamoto has intervened into about 2, 000 child marriages and we want to leave a name behind for the job well done by her," said Jackson.

The CEO further said with time, they would also build a community college in the same area of Kachindamoto so that when girls in the area complete their secondary education they should pursue tertiary education at the college.

"The college will be named after T.A. Kachindamoto," added Jackson.

The organization’s objectives are to support and provide relief for victims, survivors and people who are vulnerable to domestic violence, abuse and discrimination.

 

Lilongwe, June 15: President Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika on Friday advised Universities across the country to prioritize research activities if they are to play a part in the development of the country.

Addressing the congregation during the graduation ceremony of Mzuzu University students at the Bingu Convention Centre (BICC) in Lilongwe, Mutharika who is also the Chancellor of the University of Malawi said government was committed to supporting all research activities that would bring about new innovations.

“For universities to compete at international level they need to be innovative enough to bring something new on the table and that is what the country is looking for,” he said.

He said this year’s budget allocation to education is a demonstration of government’s commitment to uplifting the country’s education system.
“The allocation for student’s loan facility has been raised from K4billion to K8billion which reflects 100 percent increase so that needier students should access education,” assured Mutharika.

Mutharika therefore called upon the graduates to repay their loans for other students to benefit.

He said government is committed to ensuring that Malawians access high quality and relevant education, adding that government would establish new public universities to increase university intake.

He revealed that Mombera university in Mzimba is making good progress as government is finalising efforts to identify a contractor for the project and construction work for the road that will lead to the university has commenced.

Aside from the research issue Mutharika advised the graduates to apply what they learned practically observing that education without its supporting actions was vain.

“We need educated people that not only rest on their knowledge but people who will be bold enough to change things in the country and help in its development,” Mutharika said.

He added: “The University is the highest place of learning and you will always be expected to be the best. Therefore, go and be the best in whatever you choose to do.”

He said Malawi needs labour force that is educated and the country’s education system must be good enough to instil relevant skills.

Chairman of Council for Mzuzu University, Dr. Fred Harawa commended government’s effort in developing tertiary education in the country.

He said so far government with its development partners is constructing different structures at Mzuzu University that will help enhance the education system.

Harawa however, lobbied for the speedy construction of the library at the university saying the one that they had was gutted down by fire in 2017.

“The University currently operates without a formal library and this has a negative impact on the academic life of the students,” he said.

On the graduation day Mzuzu University graduated 1,185 students and the President awarded K100,000 each to 15 students who graduated with first class degrees.

Mzuzu University opened its doors in 1999 with only 60 students currently the University enrols 5264 students in 37 programmes, which highlights a 900 percent increase.

Lilongwe, June 14: Malawi Human Rights Commission (MHRC) has expressed satisfaction with the goodwill shown by the Ministry of Information and Communications Technology (MoICT) in ensuring that implementation of Access to Information Act comes soon.

MHRC Commissioner, Benedicto Kondowe on Tuesday made the remarks on the sidelines of the orientation workshop for the media and Nongovernmental Organizations on ATI at Crossroads Hotel in Lilongwe.

“Our desire as a commission is that perhaps by July, the minister should appoint the commencement date because the law specifically reserves the appointment of the commencement date into the hands of the minister.

“And we are pleased that there is a lot of goodwill from the MoICT in ensuring that this act should be rolled out.

And we hope that if we are to comply with our roadmap; we should be able to ensure the commencement date from the minister as soon as possible,” said Kondowe.

Commissioner Kondowe said the workshop is one of the few preparatory activities that need to be conducted towards the commencement of the law. He said these preparatory activities, which need to be concluded by end of June 2018; are crucial as they will orient different stakeholders involved in the law before its actual implementation.

“In this case, we have this orientation for members representing targeted media houses and heads of nongovernmental organizations.

“The whole idea is to orient them on what the law entails and the various responsibilities and obligations which have been placed on each one of them,” said Kondowe.

In the ATI, the HRCM has been granted the powers to enforce and provide oversight function while the Ministry of Information and Communications Technology has been given the powers to provide policy direction.

In case of any impediments in beating the July target; Kondowe said the HRCM would continue working hand in hand with the MoICT in order to build a common understanding for the betterment of Malawians.

Director of Information, Gedion Munthali said government would have preferred to start implementing the ATI immediately after its enactment but room was given to cater for some other equally important technicalities.

These, he said include mapping; which requires bringing in all stakeholders involved in the implementation of the ATI, identifying Information holders in all the institutions, validation of the communication strategy by all stakeholders and raising awareness.

“This law intends to benefit everyone including government, the general public, organizations and even the media. As such, every concerned party needs to understand the ATI and what is happening.

“But as of now, works are progressing on very well and we are happy that we are now approaching the end of this work,” said Munthali.

Parliament enacted the ATI law in 2016 and was assented to by the Head of State Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika in February, 2017.

Lilongwe, June 13: District Commissioner (DC) for Lilongwe, Lawford Palani has cautioned members of District Elections Supervisory Team (DEST) to be non-partisan and avoid promoting any political party ahead of 2019 tripartite elections.

He said this on Tuesday during a meeting for DEST members which was conducted as part of preparations for voter registration exercise which Malawi Electoral commission (MEC) is expected to roll out in Lilongwe in July.

Palani said he would not tolerate members of DEST favoring any political party or candidate ahead of the 2019 polls saying the practice may lead to conflicts between parties and dent the image of the council.

“My duty as DC is to make sure that we help MEC conduct a free and fair election without any political party accusing anyone of favoritism".

"Let me urge each one of you to be non-partisan so that we contribute to a free and fair election and build our nation together,” the DC pointed out.

He urged collaboration between government sectors and the civil society to ensure a smooth electoral process.

“I will soon meet with the multiparty liaison committee and all civil society organizations who will be involved in the electoral processes to remind them that as a council we expect them to be professional and leave aside their personal interests ahead of the tripartite elections,” Palani stated.

Assistant District Registrar (ADR) for Lilongwe, Patricia Zindaba said her office is working hand in hand with MEC to provide all the information needed in the registration process.

“We will make sure that even those in the remotest areas are provided with the information needed so that every Malawian registers,” she said.

Zindaba explained that said her office is still registering people for National IDs at the DC’s office giving a chance to all those that did not register months ago.

Lilongwe has 19 Traditional Authorities and a total of 470 registration centres hence attracting so much attention from politicians and political parties.

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