Malawi. A sentence of 14 years in prison with hard work for a gay couple was met with outrage in the outside world. The two men, who were arrested in December 2009 after announcing their engagement, were found guilty of gross indecency and unnatural behavior. Probably because of the harsh criticism from key donors, President Mutharika decided a week later to pardon the men. The President has previously spoken contemptuously of homosexuality.
According to COUNTRYAAH, Malawi has a population of 18.14 million (2018). The president’s decision to change the country’s flag at short notice caused a lot of criticism within the country. The former black-red-green flag with a half, red rising sun in the black field was replaced by a red-black-green flag with a full, white sun in the middle. The president justified the change with the fact that the country cannot be at dawn for almost half a century after independence. The fully brilliant sun should represent the progress that has been made, the president said, but received criticism for the change of flag costing unnecessarily much money and should have been preceded by a public debate and preferably a referendum. The answer was that prosecution will be brought against those who hoist the old flag. See DIGOPAUL for map and location of Malawi.
In October, a vessel transport route was opened along the Shire and Zambezi rivers from Nsanje in southern Malawi to the port city of Chinde in Mozambique, a distance of 24 km. According to softwareleverage, the new transport opportunities are expected to greatly facilitate Malawi’s trade and save billions of dollars each year.