The most senior Tumbuka chief has a message for women who display their breasts and men who ogle at them: not in my area!

Speaking at this year’s Gonapamuhanya cultural festival, the Tumbuka paramount chief expressed anger at young women who, as he put it, walk in the streets almost naked.

“BaPresident, bana basungwana bavwalenge nga mba Malawi. Mwana angawoneskanga mabele kwa banthu yayi,” said Chikulamayembe when he spoke in Tumbuka which roughly translates: “Madam President, girls should dress like Malawians. They should not display their breasts.”

“A woman’s nakedness should be covered as much as possible. Bana bithu bakwenda nkhuli mu mseu (our children walk in the streets naked). And they think it is part of civilisation,” fumed the traditional leader.

The Gonapamuhanya cultural festival is a commemoration of the Chikulamayembe chieftaincy. The event is named after Gonapamuhanya, who was the first Chikulamayembe.

Chikulamayembe is the most senior traditional authority among the Tumbuka of Malawi and Zambia.

Chikulamayembe has been promoting preservation of culture and have even gone to secondary schools to deliver the message.

He often says culture is dynamic and that the dynamism makes it feeble, hence there is great need to handle it with care.

At some point, he deplored deteriorating dress code after he saw some girls spotting what is known as bare-backs and leggings, both of which he said are too revealing.

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