“The name Manganya will not die. It will always be there,” Minister of Tourism, Culture and Wildlife Michael Usi said in Blantyre on Wednesday.
Manganya is a nickname that Usi is known for in the theatre circles.
This is a stage name that has put him in the limelight and is popular compared to Michael Usi in the country before he went into active politics.
Now minister, some quarters have had it that he stops acting and concentrate on his serious role of minister and also UTM Vice President.
Others have also played fun, picking some of his drama escapades in Tikuferanji soap which he was producing whilst holding a top position of Adventist Development Relief Agency (Adra) and thrown them on social media for discussions.
Manganya has left people in stitches with some of the roles that he has played in Tikuferanji and that is the immense talent that he holds.
His appointment as minister has since been welcomed by the creative industry with many feeling that this was now the time for the sector to grow having not been given serious attention as well as respect it deserves.
“To me he is fit to be minister of culture and looking at how he has started so far, I see a lot happening and I hope he continues like that,” actor and playwright Ashukile Mwakisulu said.
Manganya told leaders of associations during a consultation meeting that he has never stopped acting and that he will continue to do so.
“I am an artist and so why should I stop something which I love and I am in love with? Even President Lazarus Chakwera encouraged me to continue and so all I am telling the nation is that I am still in it,” he said.
Manganya also revealed that he will soon come up with episodes that people should brace to watch and appreciate his talent once again.
Apart from starring in Tikuferanji, Manganya has also produced movies such as Dr Manga and has also staged a number of plays.
“This is good that he wants to continue with his talent. Holding such high positions is not something that can stop him from doing what he loves. Before getting into politics he was an artist first and this is why he has also been given the task of uplifting the sector,” Frank Mbewe, an actor and playwright said.
Despite standing out as a comedian, Manganya has also shown the best of his talents as he has also produced songs.
Apart from offering entertainment to the people, Manganya has used art to help bring about change tackling various issues affecting people such as health through Tikuferanji.
While Manganya has stood out in the creative industry with Tikuferanji which is no longer airing at the moment, he has also produced works such as Manganya in Action which is a film, Living on Perfume which was produced in 2009.
Filmed on location in Malawi and Burundi, the film details the conditions in Malawian prisons and it also comments on politics and love throughout its episodes.
The film features an international cast of Australian, British, Malawian and Swedish actors.
For those who have followed Manganya, then they will also remember the film – Manganya the International Cook.
Manganya has also creatively used ceremonies to tackle issues.
“All I can say is that people should be ready to see me on stage shortly and we will bring a cast of the actors you know Make Sikono (Ruth Simika) and others,” he said.
I n Tikuferanji (Why we are dying) which is a series that enlightened people about HIV/Aids among others, Manganya worked with several actors including Simika, Jeremiah Mwaungulu, Bon Kalindo, Frank Yalu, Enifa Chiwaya and Margaret Chikwembeya.