Tuesday, February 9, 2010

African chiefs to review customs to fight AIDS

All chiefs from Chewa tribe in Malawi, Zambia and Mozambique are expected to gather at a meeting aimed at reviewing their customs which dispose people to high infections of HIV and AIDS. Former vice President of Malawi, Dr. Justin Malewezi disclosed.
“The king of chewa, Kalonga Gawaundi has recently give a directive to all chewa chiefs to review all Chewa customs, to see which ones dispose people to high infections and then to see ways and means of either adjusting those customs or even abandon them,” Malewezi said.

Dr. Malewezi who is also Gawaundi’s ambassador in Malawi said all the major tribes have got their practices but the chewa are probably the ones that have many intricate and sometimes difficult customs to understand.

“Most of the customs are involved in the initiation process and this might also be the case in a few other tribes but for the Chewa kingdom indeed through these initiation rights it can bring the girls and boys to the position where they can be infected,” said Malewezi.

He, however say, through changing the new curricular of customs, they shall bring in messages that can protect the young people from infections.

The directive from the King to discuss which customs to be adjusted is expected to get financial support from National AIDS Commission (NAC).

It is believed that Chinamwali dance, in which young women dance half naked especially during the annual ceremony of kulamba is expected to be reviewed as well, according to one chief who pleaded anonymity.

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