Queen Elizabeth: Chakwera makes embarrassing mistake

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Malawi President Lazarus Chakwera has made an embarrassing mistake in his condolence message to the United Kingdom (UK) after the death of Queen Elizabeth II.

On 8 September 2022, Chakwera issued a statement condoling the ‘Royal Family and Government of Great Britain’. However, Chakwera’s condolence letter disregards decorum.

“On behalf of the people and Government of Malawi, the First Lady and I express our deepest condolences to the British Royal Family and the people and Government of Great Britain on the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, who was also Queen of Malawi between 1964 and 1966 as Malawi was transitioning into a Republic,” wrote President Chakwera.

The condolence, shared on the president’s official Facebook page and Twitter account as well as shared by both State House and Malawi Government social media pages, contains an embarrassing mistake by Head of the State in the Commonwealth of Nations which Queen Elizabeth II headed until her death last Thursday.

Queen Elizabeth II was Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, a sovereign country commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain. The UK comprises England, Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland.

However, while the UK is also referred to as Britain, it is not the same as Great Britain, a territorial land that only comprises England, Wales and Scotland. Great Britain does not include Northern Ireland. Together with other British Isles archipelago, the Great Britain and Northern Ireland form the United Kingdom.

The British government, headed by a Prime Minister, runs the UK by appointment of the King or Queen of the British royal family. The King or Queen is the official head of state of the UK.

In this regard, it has been noted that Malawi President Chakwera has disregarded official decorum as he condoles the Great Britain instead of the United Kingdom.

Chakwera, currently on a 3 week-long trip to the UN General Assembly (UNGA) in the United States, is yet to correct his mistake.

The President will not attend the Queen’s funeral this coming Monday as he has delegated former President Joyce Banda to represent him.

Meanwhile, foreign dignitaries attending the funeral have been banned from using private jets while flying into the UK. The leaders have been ordered to fly commercial and are required to use a bus allocated to them while in London instead of using privately hired vehicles.

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