BLANTYRE-(MaraviPost)—Malawi President Lazarus Chakwera has on Tuesday received a rare and thunderous welcome from incumbent President of Zambia, Edgar Chagwa Lungu, and the opposition leader Hakainde Hechilema of the United Party for National Development.
Chakwera’s plane touched-down at the Kenneth Kaunda International Airport around 09:00 hours and was received by Foreign Affairs Minister Joseph Malanji, Lusaka Province Minister Bowman Lusambo and Service Chiefs before inspecting a Guard of Honour.
Upon arrival, Chakwera thanked the government of Zambia for giving him a warm reception.
“I am very grateful to my brother President Edgar Chagwa Lungu of Zambia for the warm reception he has given me on my visit today. I have been reaffirmed in my decision to do my first foreign trip here,” said Chakwera in a post on his facebook page.
Opposition leader Hechilema welcomed the Malawi leader by describing him as a rare breed of the current politics, who fought against the politics of divide and rule.
“We wish to extend our warmest welcome to His Excellence President Lazarus Chakwera of Republic of Malawi and his entourage to our country. President Chakwera belongs to a new generation of African Patriots and distinguished leaders who found themselves in unusual circumstances of a new struggle against tyrannical leaders, that hail from amongst Africans themselves.
“Leaders that fight and oppress their own people and use ethnicity to subjugate and divide the masses, for political expediency. President Chakwera belongs to a breed of African nationalists who are fast tracked as enemies of the state, simply because they chose to participate in the culture of democracy that ordinarily allows for divergent views,” wrote Hechilema on his official facebook page.
The opposition further said in his acceptance speech as President of the Republic of Malawi on 1st July 2020, President Chakwera addressed the profound paradox of African politics;
“for of what use is freedom from oppression if you are slave to starvation? Or freedom from colonialism if you are slave to tribalism? Of what use is freedom from tyranny if you are a slave to poverty?”.
He, therefore, said “Africa in general and Zambia in particular will now rely on distinguished statesmen like President Chakwera, who prior to being President, vigorously fought against dictatorship, discrimination, corruption and institutional impunity. Africans now depend on this African champion of democracy, to set aside African leaders’ usual diplomatic niceties and empty chatter, and truthfully speak on behalf of Africans’ daily struggles against despotic leaders that litter the continent, and the acute poverty and suffering they subject our people to, due to greed, corruption and mismanagement of public resources.”
The President said he singled out Zambia as the first country he visited since he was elected Head of State on June 28th, 2020 because of the strong historical background the two countries share.
The Malawi leader added that the economies of the two countries was high on the agenda in his engagement with President Lungu.
While in Zambia, Chakwera also laid wreaths at the burial site of the late Presidents of Zambia Levy Mwanawasa, Fredrick Chiluba and Michael Sata.