Mutharika weds partner in colourful ceremony

Comment on this story


IOL Mutharika

AFP

Malawi's newly elected President Peter Mutharika married his long-term partner. File picture: Amos Gumulira

Blantyre - Malawi's newly elected President Peter Mutharika married his long-term partner in a colourful ceremony before local dignitaries in a jam-packed Blantyre church on Saturday.

Dressed in a silver grey suit, the smiling 74-year-old exchanged rings and vows with former lawmaker Gertrude Maseko, 54, telling the new First Lady that he was giving her the ring as a “symbol of everlasting love.”

Mutharika has been a widower for three decades since the death of his first wife. He has three children from that marriage.

The president had wanted the wedding to be private and insisted the costs were to borne by the family and no state resources apart from security would be used.

The wedding was in contrast to that staged by his late brother and former president, Bingu wa Mutharika, who used millions of dollars from state coffers for his marriage to Calista Chimombo in 2010.

Scores of Malawians, watched over by police who mounted a tight security operation, had gathered shortly after dawn outside the small but historic Protestant church built by missionaries in the early 1900s.

The bride, wearing a white wedding dress and holding a bouquet of white and yellow flowers, promised to be a “loving, faithful and dutiful wife until God shall separate us by death.”

The couple abandoned plans to travel in an open-top car through Blantyre to the presidential palace because of a persistent drizzle.

“Going through the city in an open-top car would have been fantastic,” said Mary Phiri, who came to the church around 7.00 am to witness the ceremony, which was also broadcast live on state television.

About 6000 villagers and dignitaries will be treated to a reception feast with traditional dancing at Mutharika's village in southern Malawi, 40 kilometres from Blantyre, the commercial capital.

Mutharika, the leader of the Democratic Progressive Party, won May 20 elections, defeating incumbent Joyce Banda. - Sapa-AFP


sign up
 
 

Comment Guidelines



  1. Please read our comment guidelines.
  2. Login and register, if you haven’ t already.
  3. Write your comment in the block below and click (Post As)
  4. Has a comment offended you? Hover your mouse over the comment and wait until a small triangle appears on the right-hand side. Click triangle () and select "Flag as inappropriate". Our moderators will take action if need be.

     

Join us on

IOL-Social networks IOL-Social networks IOL-Social networks IOL-Social networks

Business Directory