Tiwonge Chimbalanga, popularly known as ‘Aunt Tiwo, arrived in Blantyre yesterday (Thursday) around 11:20AM, immediately drawing attention to himself as he disembarked from an Axa Executive Coach near Blantyre Post Office.
Chimbalanga was clad in traditional wear. From afar, the short he wore looked like a skirt; however, at close range, one came to grips with the fact that it was a long short, which ostensibly matched well with the colourful top.
Aunt Tiwo, whose lips were dressed with red, said he was happy to be in Blantyre at last, and said he hoped people would not mock “me for what I am”.
“I am here in Blantyre at last. And I happy to be here, and to be what I am. Nothing, not even mocking people, will ever change me,” said Chimbalanga in a brief interview with Zachimalawi.
He then rushed to a waiting Toyota Prado, brown in colour, hugged the driver warmly for some 40 seconds, and jumped into the vehicle.
Meanwhile, Blantyre Post Office came to a stand-still as people jostled to have a look at ‘Aunt’ Tiwo. Others, however, laughed mockingly, as Chimbalanga wriggled his waist, and walked towards the Toyota Prado unperturbed.
“With time, these people will realize how wrong they were all this wrong. I don’t see the problem with me; actually, I don’t understand them- why they just can’t mind their own business,” said Chimbalanga as he rushed towards the vehicle, promising to grant Zachimalawi an exclusive two-hours interview once “my spirits are down”.
‘Aunt Tiwo’ spoke to Zachimalawi for only four minutes.
Chimbalanga came into the limelight along with Steven Monjeza when they organised Malawi's ever same-sex engagement.
They were later convicted to 14 years imprisonment by Resident Magistrate Nyakwawa Usiwausiwa of Blantyre Magistrates' Court.
Malawi's Head of State and Government, Bingu wa Mutharika, later pardoned the two after succumbing to pressure from the international community. Mutharika effected the decision after meeting United Nations Secretary General Ban-Ki-moon.