In 1999, Malawi had a population of around 11 million people, with over 60% living in rural areas. The economy was mainly based on agriculture and subsistence farming, with some light industry. The country was heavily reliant on foreign aid and assistance to meet its economic needs. Foreign relations were mainly focused on the United Kingdom, with whom it had strong ties since independence in 1964. Politically, Malawi was a republic led by President Bakili Muluzi since 1994. In 1999, the country held its first multiparty elections since independence and Muluzi won in a landslide victory. This marked a major shift in the political landscape of Malawi and ushered in a new era of democracy for the nation. See ethnicityology for Malawi in the year of 2018.
Malawi. Visit Countryaah official website to get information about the capital city of Malawi. General elections were held in May. The ruling United Democratic Front (United Democratic Front, UDF) lost fine to an alliance between the Malawi Congress Party and the Alliance for Democracy Party (AFORD), but still gained its own majority after four partyless members moved to the UDF. The days following the election, unrest was raging in opposition-dominated areas, where cheating was felt. Among other things, as many as 168,000 potential voters were said to have not received any voting cards. The election accentuated the regional gaps that have emerged in Malawi, where the UDF dominates the southern country end while the Congress Party is strongest in the central parts and AFORD is the largest in the north.
- Also see Abbreviationfinder.org to see the acronym of MWI which stands for Malawi and other definitions of this 3-letter abbreviation.
In the presidential election, incumbent Prime Minister Bakili Muluzi won just over 52% over opposition alliance candidate Gwanda Chakwanda, who got just over 45% of the vote.
In October, President Muluzi was able to further enjoy the sweetness of the victory by officially marrying his bourgeois wife for twelve years, 21-year-old Patricia Fukila, in a religious ceremony. Opposition leaders rejected the large-scale party, which they claimed robbed the Treasury of about SEK 3 million.
After several years of delay, in February 2015, the courts began reviewing the death sentence, after the district court in 2007 declared the death penalty in violation of the constitution. 46 prisoners were immediately released while 5 others were sentenced to prison terms. Following the periodic review of human rights in the country, the government accepted 154 out of the 199 UN Human Rights Council recommendations. The rejected recommendations were mainly about the death penalty and the criminalization of sex between people of the same sex.
In February 2016, three Malawi Congress Party MPs were arrested: Jessie Kabwila. Ulemu Msungama and Peter Chankwantha. They were charged with statements on social media and subsequently released on bail. The arrests were contrary to the law granting parliamentarians immunity.
In March 2016, the government appointed a special attorney to assist in the handling of crime cases targeting albinos. At least 7 albinos were killed by criminal gangs in the country in 2016. Including 23-month-old Whitney Chilumpha and 9-year-old Harry Mokoshoni.
In July, students at the University of Malawi demonstrated a triple the tuition fee. At Chancellor College in Zomba, police stormed the college and fired tear gas at students seeking refuge in their rooms. A video footage showed police killing two female students. Later, 14 students at Malawi Polytechnic near Blantyre were arrested and charged with disturbing public order. They were later released on bail. Eleven students at Kamuzu College of Nursing were also arrested and charged with inciting violence. They were also released on bail.
The country was hit by drought in 2016 and in January 2017 reports of attacks by the African army worm in the area around Zomba. The pest can breed large areas of crops in no time.
Malawi is one of the poorest countries on Earth and its economic conditions place it among those with the most modest social development. From 2006 to 2009, however, it experienced economic growth annual rate of over 7% and has become an exporter of food, also thanks to the support of international investments. Alongside the products used for local consumption, the agriculture of Malawi produces tobacco (grown in small farms) and tea (on the contrary, in large plantations). The industrial base (linked to local raw materials, such as tobacco manufacturing) is limited and the influx of foreign investments is hampered by low local market demand and modest export opportunities. After a phase between the late 1980s and early 1990s, during which considerable progress had been made in agriculture and, in general, in economic productivity through modernization and liberalization interventions.