Prisoners Perform

On Saturday, we all made our way to Nanzikambe Arts Cafe to watch a performance by current prisoners from Chichiri and Zomba prison.  Effie Makepeace has worked with prisoners in Chichiri for the past three years, running drama workshops which help prisoners to express their emotions and kep active during the days, months and years they spend incarcerated in inhumane and degrading conditions.  Nanzikambe Arts Development Organization ( was the perfect place to display the hard work of Effie and the prisoners.   Nanzikambe, meaning Chameleon in Continue reading →

And Crocodiles Are Hungry At Night

On 25 September 1987 Jack Mapanje, a Malawian University lecturer and poet was arrested without charge, under a direct order from Ngwazi Dr H. Kamuzu Banda.  He was detained in Mikuyu prison without trial for 3 years, 7 months,16 days and more than 12 hours.  The Africa Centre, in collaboration with Nanzikambe Arts and Bilimankhwe Arts, are running a production of “And Crocodiles Are Hungry At Night”, adapted from the memoirs of Dr Mapanje.  Nine actors travelled from Malawi to bring to life the injustice Continue reading →

Tadala’s Story

I have just heard from Peter Magombo, a lawyer at Blantyre Legal Aid Department who has been fundamental in getting the applications and submissions produced by CCPS interns filed and presented in Court, that a young girl wrongly accused of murdering her child has been acquitted.    I was first introduced to Tadala Major, when I was asked by one of the paralegals at CHREAA to interview her, as they suspected she had been the victim of a gross injustice.  Mac and I interviewed Tadala Continue reading →

Malawi’s new president – Joyce Banda

Five days after leaving Blantyre, reports started to surface in UK News over speculation that President Bingu had died.  On 5 April, BBC Africa reported that he had been flown to South Africa for medical treatment after suffering a heart attack, whilst reported that President Bingu wa Mutharika had died.  I immediately contacted friends based in Blantyre and Lilongwe who confirmed the Malawi Democrat’s report; a friend of a friend had been working in Kamuzu Central Hospital in Lilongwe and claimed Bingu had already died before Continue reading →

Justice delayed is Justice denied

The Strike Since my arrival in Malawi almost three months ago, all 200 courts, from the Supreme Court to the Magistrate’s Courts, have remained closed.  After negotiations in 2005, Parliament promised the court staff a salary increase of 50%, to come into effect in 2006.  However, as six years have passed without any sign of the approved pay rise, the court staff understandably felt there was no alternative other than to go on strike.  Negotiations with the Judicial Services Commission have been ongoing since January, Continue reading →