Customs and traditions
According to Abbreviationfinder, in Malawi, respect for the elderly and hospitality towards strangers is important. You like to talk about personal things like family relationships, but avoid talking about HIV / ADIS. Eating with your hands is common, but you can ask for cutlery if you are above eating with your fingers.
Being presented properly is important. Colleagues are addressed as Mr, Mrs or Miss until a close relationship is established. One should ask if one can call the colleague by first name.
- Countryaah: Overview of the capital city of Malawi, including information about its population, economy, geography, history and map.
At a meeting, one should take the time, although it is not uncommon for a person to be delayed, especially if traveling by public transport. A person should be reminded to be punctual before an agreed meeting.
Employees are not often away from work to attend relatives and friends’ funerals.
Conversations are often initiated with questions about where you come from and how your family is doing. Discussions about the work are also common. There are some sensitive topics, such as HIV / AIDS. It can sometimes be difficult to get straight answers, and you can be asked the same thing several times from different starting points.
It is important to know that chichewa is a tonal language. For example, the word zikomo means “thank you” or “apologize” depending on how you pronounce it.
People are preferably at arm’s length when talking, and even further apart when talking to a person of the opposite sex. Eye contact is not necessary during a conversation, and you do not touch a person without being very familiar with it. Men who are friends can hold each other’s hands, go arm in arm or shake hands for a long time while they talk.
The upholstery is usually simple but beautiful. Women like to dress in chitenge, a colorful patterned fabric that, like a sarong, is wrapped around the chest or waist. Among men, the Madiba shirt is popular. This silk shirt in a bright and colorful batik pattern was often worn by South Africa’s former president Nelson Mandela, whose clan was named Madiba. Shoes are expensive, and in the villages, Malaysians usually walk barefoot.
Office employees dress formally. Jeans are not accepted in an office environment.
The most common everyday dish is nsima, a seasoned corn porridge served with meat or fish as well as peanuts, vegetables and a strong pepper sauce. You often eat sitting on the floor with the food in the middle. Malawians usually eat with their hands, which are first washed in a bowl of water. Both the hand wash and the meal are started by the oldest in the company. Anyone who is not used to eating with their hands may ask for a knife and fork.
Holidays and national symbol
According to Countryaah, in addition to Easter, Christmas and New Year’s Day, Chilembwe Day is celebrated on January 15 (after the Independent fighter John Chilembwe) and Martyrs Day on April 3 (in memory of 40 people who lost their lives in a revolt against British colonial power in 1959).
Malawi’s flag has three horizontal bands (one red, one black and one green) with a shining white sun in the middle. The sun will symbolize the country’s development since independence in 1964. Prior to 2010, the flag looked slightly different, with half a red sun in the black field.
Malawi’s geographical location, without its own sea coast, makes the country dependent on transport routes through neighboring countries. The railway network linking Malawi with Mozambique and its port cities Nacala and Beira is being refurbished.
There are plans to open an inland port in Nsanje with boat traffic to the sea via the Shire River and the Zambezi River.
The road network is relatively well developed, but the quality of the roads is uneven.
There are two international airports: one in the capital Lilongwe and one in Blantyre. In addition, there are two domestic airports.
Ex-President arrested for corruption
Former President Bakili Muluzi is arrested, accused of corruption. He is later released on bail.
The vice president is dismissed
Vice President Cassim Chilumpha is dismissed accused of failing to hold office, but a court has suspended the decision until further notice. In April, Chilumpha is arrested. He is charged with treason and conspiracy to murder President Mutharika. He is later released on bail but is placed on house arrest for a while.