By 8:30am on 25 August 2020. Namadingo, and his Namartist Management Team were already at the proposed site for Mahatma Ghandi statue in readiness to raise funds for musician William Kachigamba who needed 3 million Kwacha for cancer treatment in neighbouring Zambia.
Sadly, by 11:00am Blantyre City Council-BCC had not yet granted him permission (clearance) for the course despite informing them in writing 4 days earlier. Time was running out, and while we sat in the van thinking of the way forward, I envisaged frustation in Namadingo’s eyes which had turned very red; he was about to drop a tear.
He then turned to Peter Mazunda, and said: “Uncle P! William needs help and we have to do anything for him to receive medical treatment and live healthy. If we don’t get this permit from BCC today, let’s make a way to do this whether in Mzuzu or Lilongwe tomorrow but we cannot fail him.”
Without hesitation, Peter instructed me to draft a letter for him to either Lilongwe City Council or Mzuzu City Council seeking for permission on the same, and as I was about to start typing the letter the heart and zeal Namadingo had showed at that hour amazed me-He was no longer himself.
Immediately I reminisced how in 2017 upon achieving a mark as the first Malawian solo musician to fill BICC to brim. Namadingo and Peter came up with a fundraising initiative dubbed “1 Man, 1 Guitar and 1 Cameraman” that was aimed at raising 1 Million Kwacha for the Children’s Cancer Ward at the Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital in 40 days.
The two creatives ended up travelling far and wide in the country singing in bars, offices, business premises, homes and producing videos to raise the funds. In 40 days, they had managed to raise 15 million instead of the planned 1 million Kwacha.
Three years later despite the delays caused by BCC in granting him permission, Namadingo did it again with the support of people of all social classes and ages.
Truth be told, despite his flaws, the man is a true philanthropist and deserves to be Malawi’s Cancer Ambassador, because not once but twice has he been involved in a successful cancer related fundraising activity.
Glory to the heavens, city lords gave the required permit and the event took place; the desire Namadingo harboured for William to get medical treatment and live will surely be met courtesy of people’s goodwill in being part of the solution. Long live Namadingo the walking statue of humanity, and the whole Namartists management team.