March 3 - Martyrs Day in Malawi

Posted on March 3, 2018

The people of Malawi, in Africa, were ruled over for decades by Britain. The Brits called the land the British Central Africa Protectorate but soon renamed it Nyasaland. And then, willy-nilly, with no thought to what the African peoples themselves thought, the British government smushed together Nyasaland with Northern and Southern Rhodesia (regions that are now the independent nations of Zambia and Zimbabwe). The new, lumped-together political unit was the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland, but it was often called the Central African Federation.

People in all the various regions of the CAF resented the smushing and the lumping together. And, by the way, they resented colonial rule, anyway! The motivation to become their own rulers was sky high -

- And then the British government pounced on the "dissidents," the rebels, the Malawians who wanted to be free. In 1959 the British declared a state of emergency, and 51 Malawians were killed, many more were wounded, and more than a thousand were arrested.

It is these people - the dead and the survivors - who are honored today.

Unfortunately, Malawi struggles with huge problems. Most people live in the countryside, and there is little economic activity other than small-scale farming. Healthcare is less available there than in most nations, and health problems are huge. 

Hopefully the nation will be able to diversify, build tourism and industry, and make improvements. 

Here are some Malawian scenes that show how much tourists are missing by not visiting Malawi!

Lake Malawi is spectacular:

Mount Mulanje and other natural spots offer a lot of wonderful scenery:

And, of course, the animals:

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