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‘Uplift war veterans living standards’

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Vice President Saulosi Chilima has inaugurated this year’s Poppy Week with a call to Malawians to financially support the country’s war veterans to uplift their living standards.

Chilima made the call Tuesday, when he presided over the launch of the week at his official residence in Lilongwe.

He said Poppy Week gives people the opportunity to reflect on the sacrifice made by ex- service men who fought for peace and freedom in Malawi and the world at large.

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“As Commander-in-Chief of the MDF [Malawi Defence Force] and Patron of Velom [Veterans and Ex-Services League of Malawi], President Lazarus Chakwera has assured me that he will give you all his support and provide guidance where necessary. Let me also take this opportunity to appeal to all organisations and all Malawians of goodwill to contribute towards this noble cause by purchasing the poppies that will be circulating throughout the country. This is one way we, as Malawians, can express our commitment to support the ideals of Velom and the war veterans in particular,” he said.

Velom Chairperson Brigadier Kalumon (retired) called on the government to introduce a law that protects retired MDF personnel.

“Currently, there are no laws that protect retired Malawi Defence Force personnel. We are calling on the government to emulate countries that have deliberate laws that support retired soldiers,” he said.

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Chilima contributed K1 million to the cause of promoting war veterans’ welfare.

During the week, people remember members of the Kings African Riffles, who died on duty during the first and second world wars, which were fought between 1915 and 1945.

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