Trending: Madonna’s David in Malawian attire with Swahili words on it

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American pop star Madonna last week shared on Instagram a picture of her oldest adopted child from Malawi, David Banda, in the country’s traditional attire.

The Pop star promised to keep David tethered to his Malawian roots having adopted him in 2006. She is beyond any reasonable doubt walking the talk.

David - Madonna

David on Madonna’s Instagram.

The image captioned “be proud of who you are and where you come from”, shows the 11 year old in Chitenje made outfit with Swahili words on it. He stands next to a picture of his biological father Yohane Banda, foster mother Madonna, and a relative from Malawi.

The Swahili words reads “Mambo Mazuri” meaning good things/beautiful things.

These are the only visible words as others are hidden in the cloth’s caves.

Swahili is a language widely spoken in East Africa, in countries like Tanzania, Kenya and Uganda. It is therefore alien to Malawi.

Taking into consideration the fact that language is one of the major cultural values, Chichewa or any of the local languages would have carried more weight on the Malawian outfit.

Some Malawians have likened the attire to that of the Maasai of East Africa in terms of style.

Others say it’s totally Malawian, save for he language.

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40 Comments

  1. A few people have remarked on David Banda’s costume; yet they are only expressing colonial mentality. First, for a very long long time in the history of a people who are now called Malawians and those of many other African regions; including Tanzania and Kenya wore like the way David Banda has done. Thats typical African. You mean to be traditional, David should have garbed like a modern Malawian; which is either colonial or global. Second, Malawians are not different from Tanzanians or Kenyans or Ugandans. The people in the three countries, plus those of East, Central and Southern Africa are called Bantus, and the languages spoken in these areas are Bantu dialects; linguists will tell you. The Swahili dialect is spoken in parts of Northern Malawi. David Banda has a bigger picture of Africa being one and you want him to bring that one down to a colonial view of divided Africa. Moreerover, Malawian history shows that the country over history has been filled up by people ethnic groups from various parts of Africa; including present day Tanzania, Mozambique, Zambia, Republic of Congo, Uganda, Zimbabwe, South Africa; and other smaller migrations into the area presently known as Malawi. All the people of these regions wore like David has done before they adopted the colonial outfit. Spare David and Madona.

    • Dont lie bro , the fabricted clothe is not an African attire at least if he put on nyanda which is believed to be African attire made from animal skins and balk of the trees

    • You only need to review your history of the development of attire in the region I have referred to. Bulk of tree comes much earlier in history although it continued being used into the early 20th Century by those who could not afford cloth. It seems the quality of cloth matters to you more than the fashion. The way David is wearing was the way cloth was worne. It was wrapped around the waist when at work or travelling. Even in the early part of the history of modern Malawi and for those who choose today still wear the cloth like that, Beads were mainly worn by women over cloth. So where do I lie. You want prehistoric.

    • Are you sure we have identity cos what I know is that you can not tell who is & not Malawian by our dressing. We are so artificial in everything & atleast David is dressed more of African/Malawian as you find this with the Ngonis, Chewas & others.

  2. Which country? As far as I know Malawi has no traditional attire, we always copy from elsewhere, starting from music, dressing, dramas, etc Malawi has cultures with no roots.

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