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Media fratenity mourns Llyod Zawanda

Hundreds of people led by former president, Bakili Muluzi, Wednesday flocked to Chitawira Township in Blantyre to escort the body of veteran journalist, Llyod Zawanda, who died on Tuesday.

Zawanda, who until his death was Group Station Manager for Joy Media Group, died on Tuesday night at Blantyre Adventist Hospital (BAH), after he was discovered in a coma in his bedroom in the morning. He was rushed to Chitawira Private Hospital where he was referred to BAH.

He will be buried today at his home Gideon Village, Traditional Authority Chilowamatambe in Kasungu.

Joy Media Group Deputy Board Chairperson, Anthony Kasunda, said the death of Zawanda is a big blow to the group.

“I do not have the right words to describe what type of person he was. His death has been so sudden and a big shock to us his workmates, friends in the media and everyone else who has gathered here to see him off to his final resting place.

“He was one dedicated man I have ever worked with in my entire life. He always made sure his juniors learnt from his vast knowledge in media-related issues,” he said.

One of his workmates, Wesysylas Chirwa, described Zawanda as one of the best bosses he has ever worked with, saying he owes his growth in his career to him.

“The works of his hands will forever be in my heart. He taught me a lot and to me he was more than a boss. I don’t know how we are going to pick up the pieces of our broken hearts to move on without Zawanda. He was a good person and I will greatly miss him,” he said.

In a statement issued yesterday, Media Institute of Southern Africa (Misa-Malawi Chapter) Chairperson, Tereza Ndanga, said Misa is shocked and deeply saddened by the sudden death of Zawanda.

“MISA Malawi joins Malawians in general and the media fraternity, in particular, in mourning Zawanda. He has departed at a time the media sector in Malawi needed his skills and untiring professional guidance.

“Zawanda was a dedicated Misa Malawi member and a pillar of media freedom and freedom of expression. His untiring guidance and support to Misa and the sector at large will forever be missed,” reads the statement.

St Columba Church Elder, Ian Nankhuni, said Zawanda always found time in his busy schedule to attend church services and activities.

“Ironically, today’s cottage service was supposed to be here at Zawanda’s residence. I spoke with him over the weekend to confirm the venue and he said all was in order. Little did we know that this would be the meeting that we would have here,” Nankhuni said.

Before joining Joy Media Group, Zawanda worked for different institutions including the Malawi News Agency.

Zawanda, who died at the age of 62, is survived by three children.

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