We have lost a true statesman — Chakwera mourns John Tembo

John Tembo has died

President Lazarus Chakwera has described former leader of opposition John Tembo as a pillar in the history of Malawian politics.

Tembo has died aged 91 this morning in Lilongwe.

In a Facebook post this afternoon, Chakwera said Tembo, who served a Member of Parliament for 50 years and also held various roles including as Minister of Finance and Reserve Bank of Malawi Governor, played a pivotal role in the establishment and governance of numerous successful institutions in the country.

“His wisdom transcended generations and his unwavering passion for our nation was evident.

“We will therefore remember Tembo not only as political stalwart but also as a source of inspiration and a repository of knowledge,” said Chakwera.

He also hailed Tembo for facilitating a democratic transfer of power in the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) in 2013 when Tembo left his position as MCP president and Chakwera replaced him.

Speaking to the local media, former President Bakili Muluzi said Malawians should emulate Tembo’s dedication to work and his loyalty.

Also mourning Tembo’s death, long-time political associate, Joseph Njobvuyalema, said the death of Tembo has robbed the country of an icon, a mentor, and an advisor.

Hilda Manjankhosi who served the MCP as leader of the Lilongwe Women’s League for many years, said Tembo anchored the MCP after the death of its leader of many years, Ngwazi Dr Hastings Kamuzu Banda.

Commenting on his father’s death, John Tembo Junior said the love his father had for Malawi was unmatched.

“It’s a big loss, he always wanted the best for Malawi, a mentor but always stood for what he believed in,” Tembo Junior told MBC.