Russia invites Lazarus Chakwera

Sam Kawale

By Wezzie Gausi

The government of Russia has extended an invitation to President Lazarus Chakwera to attend the Russia-Africa Summit and Russia-Africa Economic Summit in July this year.

Russia is currently embroiled in a war with Ukraine.


Ironically, last year, Chakwera described “acts of war by Russia against Ukraine” as “a disturbing and destabilising development”.

He indicated that, since Malawi’s national anthem is a prayer petitioning God for peace, he was praying for peace for the people of Russia and Ukraine and their lands.

“We also call on the Russian government to use its might and means to find a peaceful resolution to its grievances against Ukraine. We do this in recognition of the fact that Malawi’s peaceful posture towards other nations involves promoting peace between all nations,” he indicated.


In the latest development, Russian Ambassador to Malawi, Nikolai Krasilnikov, who represents Malawi and Zimbabwe and is based in Zimbabwe, said in Lilongwe Monday, during the official handover of 20,000 metric tonnes of fertiliser to Malawi, that Chakwera was welcome to summits that may result in African countries benefitting more from Russia.

Krasilnikov said Russia is committed to helping least developed countries in the world.

He said, through fora such as the two summits, Malawi will bolster its economic fortunes.

“President [Vladimir] Putin has extended this invitation to Chakwera so that Malawi should be one of the African countries that are to benefit from Russia.

“It is just that Russia has some sanctions that are making it difficult for the country to help needy countries in time. But we believe that the two fora will yield much for Africa,” Krasilnikov said.

Agriculture Minister Sam Kawale said the government has welcomed the invitation.

He said the nation values relationship-building with other nations, saying this helps boost economic growth.

“We value the bilateral relationship as we seek to implement the Malawi 2063 [vision]. The invitation to this meeting is just out of the goodwill that Russia has for Malawi.

“For the agriculture sector to grow, we need to learn from other nations. As you are aware, this country is an agro-based economy,” Kawale said.

Meanwhile, Uralchem Representative Dmitry Shornikov said they are hoping the fertiliser will be used for the intended purpose.

He said their company is committed to supporting the country’s agriculture sector.

“We believe that this partnership does not end anytime soon. We, as a company, are ready to help Malawi get fertiliser from us,” Shornikov said.

Russia has, of late, expanded its influence in Africa.

These engagements extend from deepening ties in North Africa to expanding its reach in the Central African Republic and the Sahel.

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