Veteran politician and statesman Robson Watayachanga Chirwa has died.
The family spokesperson, Mayor Chirwa, said the veteran politician had died of hypertension.
“He died today at his son’s hospital –Lilongwe Private Clinic – at Area 10. We are greatly saddened with his death because over the years, this man has been a pillar and a source of wisdom to the family,” said Chirwa.
The Malawi Congress Party (MCP) president and Leader of Opposition Lazarus Chakwera said he was “deeply shocked” by the death of Chirwa.
“The gentle giant has fallen. We, in the MCP, are deeply shocked. This nation will never produce such a great and selfless politician. We mourn him deeply,” said Chakwera.
Chirwa was born in 1931 at Luwerezi in Mzimba. After his advanced primary score at Luwerezi and Loudon Mission (now Embangweni), he got selected to Dedza Secondary School where he qualified for his full secondary school certificate.
He then enrolled for a teaching course. Later, he was posted to Livingstonia Mission in Rumphi where he taught at a secondary school.
Chirwa also studied at the University of New Castle Upon Tyne in the United Kingdom.
And upon return, government appointed him to serve as the Regional Education Officer for the South based in Blantyre before attaching him to Malawi High Commission in London as an Education Attaché.
He returned to his home where people recommended that he serve as their Parliamentary Representative thereby joining politics “by accident”.
And while serving as Legislator for Mzimba South East, former president late Kamuzu Banda appointed him Minister of Transport and Communication in 1976.
He also served in different portfolios such as Regional Minister for the North, Minister of Trade and Industry, Minister Without Portfolio (Minister of State in the President’s Office) and Administrative Secretary of the MCP.
During the 2013 Independence Celebrations, former president Joyce Banda honoured Chirwa with an award in the Grand Achievers Category, appreciating his good service and good conduct to the nation.
The fallen politician is survived by a wife, six children and grandchildren.
The family spokesperson indicated that the family had not yet agreed on the funeral arrangements save for the burial place, which is Yoram Chirwa Village in traditional authority Mabulabo in Mzimba.