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E. Chilenje: Address to Africa Summit

Address to Africa Summit 2018, Cape Town, South Africa, Nov. 21–25, 2018


Thank you very much. Your Honors, Secretary General, Chiefs, Chief Mandela,

distinguished Participants, Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen,

First, allow me to thank UPF for inviting my delegation to be participants in this auspicious summit, where we are honoring the legacy of our own hero, the icon of Africa, Right Honorable Nelson Mandela—and also to contribute to this important topic of peace. 

Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen, you will all agree with me that peace is a fundamental principle for any development in any country. Malawi is known to be a peaceful country since independence, and we are a God-fearing country. We are a warm heart of Africa.

This is so because we believe that it is only peace that can develop our country. As a nation that always trusts and practices peace, we encourage everyone to live peacefully with anybody, in any season, be it in the political arena, be it in religion or culture. 

Next year on May 21, Malawi is going to go into tripartite elections, where Malawians are going to choose the president, members of Parliament and councilors. Right now the Malawi electoral body is encouraging peaceful messages during campaigns, as hate messages are the source of conflict in any country. 

It is for this reason that all the different political parties in our country are seeing to it that they are actually disseminating campaign messages that are always factual, and we are very sure that come May 21, 2019, after elections we are still going to be enjoying the same peace that we have in our country.

Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, you will agree with me that in most cases the aftermath of an election is very dangerous. When political parties don’t agree with the outcome of an election, this can be a cause of conflict in any country, and conflict is not healthy. Wherever there is war, it is the women and children who suffer. Therefore, it is very important as members of Parliament that we come up with deliberate efforts to create laws that can protect and encourage peace, that can protect our women and children.

For example, we are very sure that peace should normally start from our homes, our families. As members of Parliament in Malawi, we have just passed a law called the Marriage and Family Relations bill. This bill encourages peace in our families. Sometimes during divorce proceedings there are property grabbers who cause conflict. This bill protects the rights of women and children, saying that when the father or the husband dies, his property should only belong to his wife and the children. In other words, it is discouraging property grabbers. By so doing, it means we are promoting peace in respective families. 

Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen, as we remember and honor the legacy of Hon. Nelson Mandela, it has to be a lesson to all of us. From the speeches that we heard yesterday it is a known fact that Nelson Mandela was a promoter of peace, and he was a champion of forgiveness. Nelson Mandela was a leader who actually encouraged and promoted cooperation within countries and families in a peaceful manner. This is a legacy that we have to cherish and promote in our respective countries. 

Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen, allow me at this point in time to congratulate the nation of South Africa for actually remembering the son of South Africa, the icon of South Africa in the name of Nelson Mandela. This is something we have to emulate as a good example in our respective countries.

I know in any country we have sons and daughters who have contributed a lot. Let us do the same as what the South Africans are doing by remembering this icon, the son of South Africa who is the son of Africa. In so doing, we are going to train future leaders to become good leaders and leave a legacy that is going to be preached across our countries.

With these few remarks, I thank you all for your attention.



To go to the 2018 Africa Summit Schedule page, click here.