President Lazarus Chakwera has emphasised that the history of Malawi and Kenya can never be separated as the two nations have a lot of similarities that go way back to the struggle for independence.
He was speaking Wednesday at Wanguru Stadium in Kirinyaga County, Kenya, during Mashujaa Day Celebrations, which celebrates people who fought for Kenya’s freedom.
“It is no accident that, within less than five years of Kenya and Malawi gaining their independence, the founding father of Kenya hosted the founding father of Malawi here in Kenya in a joyous October like this one. Even today, it is no accident that when my government was deciding which road in Malawi’s capital to upgrade to a multi-lane highway before any other, the obvious choice was the Kenyatta Drive,” Chakwera said in his address.
He added that his presence at the event symbolised a renewal of brotherhood in the struggles the two countries face and share
And, on Tuesday, Chakwera met with United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) Executive Director Maimuna Mohd Sharif to kick-start his official visit to Kenya.
He underlined his desire for Malawi to make strides in sustainable urbanisation through the creation of smart cities.
“I was resolute about sustainable urbanisation to take effect in Malawi, where the need for smart cities and improving lives of Malawians via sustainable housing projects is urgent. We discussed working together in creating a conducive environment for the private sector to lead investment projects in housing and not leaving behind rural growth centres,” the Malawi leader said.
He added that the UN-Habitat team was impressed with Malawi’s 2063 agenda and the country’s aspirations that hinge on wealth and job creation as well as food security.
“I have no doubt in my mind that partnering UN-Habitat will help in the transformation agenda of rural growth centres in respect to sustainable housing,” he said.
In recent years, housing issues have posed a challenge to people in the country, in the face of growing urbanisation in major towns and cities.
As part of Public Sector Reforms, in 2016, Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority also embarked on a smart cities initiative to mitigate problems that are generated mainly by the country’s growing urban population. The initiative was piloted in Blantyre city.
Stephen Dakalira is a seasoned Journalist who works as Times Group’s Online and Digital Executive Editor. He is also the Assistant Editor of The Sunday Times Newspaper, and author of Full Circle column which appears in Malawi News; all of these under the Times Group stable.
He has previously worked in key positions for some of Malawi’s key media institutions such as Malawi News Agency, Capital FM Radio and Star Radio (Now Timveni Radio).