Lilongwe

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Lilongwe
Parliament Building of Malawi.jpg
K.a.r-.clocktower-in-lilongwe.jpg
Lilongwe Area 2.jpg
Parliament of Malawi, King's African Rifles War Memorial, Old Town
Lilongwe is located in Malawi
Lilongwe
Lilongwe
Location of Lilongwe
Coordinates: 13°59′S 33°47′E / 13.983°S 33.783°E / -13.983; 33.783Coordinates: 13°59′S 33°47′E / 13.983°S 33.783°E / -13.983; 33.783
Country  Malawi
Region Central Region
District Lilongwe
Government
 • Mayor Willie Chipondera[1]
Elevation 1,050 m (3,440 ft)
Population (2015)National Statistical Office of Malawi
 • Total 1,077,116
 • Density 1,479/km2 (3,830/sq mi)
Time zone CAT (UTC+2)
Climate Cwa
Website www.llcitycouncil.org/

Lilongwe is the largest and capital city of Malawi with an estimated population of 1,077,116 for 2015. The city is located in the central region of Malawi, near the borders with Mozambique and Zambia and is an important economic site and transportation hub for the central Malawi.[2] It is named after the Lilongwe River.

History[edit]

Lilongwe had existed for centuries as a small fishing village on the banks of the Lilongwe River. During British Colonial Rule, the settlement became an administrative center due to its strategic location. Formally founded in 1906[3] as a trading post, Lilongwe was officially recognized as a town in 1947.[4] After gaining independence, it increasingly developed into an important trading center in Malawi's central region. Its growth was encouraged when the country's former head of state, Hastings Kamuzu Banda, established it as Malawi's new capital city in 1975.[5] The last government offices have been relocated to Lilongwe in 2005.[6] The city's population is increasing rapidly, with an annual growth rate of 4.3%.[2]

Politics[edit]

Local Government[edit]

Lilongwe is governed by Lilongwe City Council, which is dominated by governing DPP.[1] Members of the national parliament and the council's wards vote the Mayor, currently Willie Chipondera.

National Government[edit]

Lilongwe is the seat of Malawi's Government and the parliament.

Geography[edit]

Topography[edit]

Lilongwe is located on a plateau in Central Malawi, forming part of the East African Rift Valley situated at an altitude of 1,050 m (3,440 ft) above sea level, along Lilongwe River. The region is dominated by Monadnock mountains.

Climate[edit]

Lilongwe features a humid subtropical climate that borders on a subtropical highland climate (Köppen: Cwa), with pleasantly warm summers and mild winters. Due to the altitude, temperatures are lower than would be expected for a city located in the tropics. Lilongwe features a short wet season that runs from December to March and a lengthy dry season that covers much of the remainder of the year, particularly June and July which are cooler than the rest of the year. However, the city sees heavy downpours during its rainy season, seeing around 200 millimetres (7.9 in) of rain in a month during the wettest months.

Climate data for Lilongwe
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 32
(90)
31
(88)
31
(88)
30
(86)
31
(88)
29
(84)
28
(82)
31
(88)
33
(91)
35
(95)
36
(97)
33
(91)
36
(97)
Average high °C (°F) 26
(79)
26
(79)
26
(79)
26
(79)
25
(77)
23
(73)
23
(73)
25
(77)
27
(81)
30
(86)
30
(86)
27
(81)
26
(79)
Daily mean °C (°F) 21
(70)
21
(70)
21
(70)
19
(66)
17
(63)
15
(59)
14
(57)
16
(61)
19
(66)
22
(72)
23
(73)
22
(72)
19
(66)
Average low °C (°F) 17
(63)
17
(63)
16
(61)
13
(55)
10
(50)
7
(45)
6
(43)
7
(45)
11
(52)
14
(57)
16
(61)
17
(63)
12
(54)
Record low °C (°F) 12
(54)
11
(52)
10
(50)
4
(39)
2
(36)
−1
(30)
−3
(27)
−1
(30)
1
(34)
8
(46)
11
(52)
10
(50)
−3
(27)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 200
(7.87)
210
(8.27)
130
(5.12)
30
(1.18)
n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a 70
(2.76)
170
(6.69)
850
(33.46)
Source: Weatherbase[7]

Demographics[edit]

Year Population[2]
1966 19,425
1977 98,718
1987 223,318
1998 440,471
2008 674,448
2015 1,077,116
2020 1,324,314

Divisions[edit]

The City Centre of Lilongwe

Lilongwe is divided into a New and Old City. The former hosts hotels, embassies, governmental institutions and offices while the latter has markets, bus stations, cafes and restaurants. The modern shops of the City are contrasted by the street and walled markets of Old Town.[5] Residential areas are numbered form 1 to 50, instead of having names. Lower numbers are located around the Old Town, higher numbers are usually found near the City Center.

Areas 1 and 2 are located at the centre of city according to the city development plan. Area 1 is commonly known as Falls Estate. Area 2 is mostly a commercial area with many old shops selling clothes, hardware of many different types, food etc. It also has a residential part which is dominated by the Asian community most of whom also own shops at commercial part of Area 2 which is commonly called Bwalo la Njovu (Elephant's ground). To the north west of Area 2, there is Area 3 which is a low density area with many colonial type housing. It used to be home to the earlier European settlers but nowadays most of the houses are occupied by the native blacks. Area 3 also has the Lilongwe Hotel. Close to Area 3, is Area 9, a modern low density area with a combination of the well to do Asians, expatriates, and high earning natives. Within the Area, there is Civo stadium which used to be the biggest in Lilongwe and second biggest in Malawi. A new and bigger stadium is under construction in Area 48. Crossroads, a small shopping mall which also has the Crossroads Hotel, a 4 star hotel,is also located within Area 9. The other well known areas are Area 6 (medium density), areas 10, 11, 12 (all low density and home to expatriates, politicians and other high class citizens. The Capital hotel is located within area 11), Areas 14, 15 and 18 (medium density), Areas 22,23,24,25 (all high density. All but Area 25 are located to the south of Area 2), Area 30 (where the national police headquarters and police housing are), Area 33 (a ministry of health area with the biggest central hospital in central region, Kamuzu central hospital located there. The area also has the Kamuzu College of Nursing, Malawi School of Health Sciences, The College of Medicine Lilongwe campus and a number of houses for staff working in these institutions. The Central Medical Stores although physically located in Area 2 is close to Area 33 and just across the road from both the Central Hospital and Nursing college), Area 36 (high density), Areas 43 and 44 (low density. The Kamuzu Palace, home to the state president of Malawi is in Area 44), Area 47 (medium density and with many modern housing units and a newly opened Gateway Mall. Another mall, the City Mall is also physically located in Area 47. The area also has the African Bible College offering bachelors and master's degrees), and finally Area 49 (high density). Area 48 is a small area which currently only has the new stadium and some high class lodges).

Other areas are not commonly known by their numbers. These are Biwi, Nchesi, Kawale, Chilinde (Area 21), Likuni, Chinsapo, Lumbadzi and Kanengo. Other areas are Mtandire, Mtsiliza, Mgona, Phwetekele and Kauma

Economy[edit]

See also: Economy of Malawi

While Blantyre is the commercial Capital of Malawi, Lilongwe's economy is dominated by the government and public institutions. Kanengo District in the north of the city is the main industrial area, where food processing, tobacco storage and sales, maize storage and other light industries take place. Finance, banking, retail trade, construction, transport, public administration, tourism, and tobacco manufacturing are the main economic activities in the city. 76 percent of Lilongwe's population live in informal settlements, while poverty stands at 25 percent and unemployment at 16 percent.[6] The civil service employs about 27 percent of all formal workers, while 40 percent work in the private sector and 2 percent are self-employed.[2]

Society and culture[edit]

A craft market in Lilongwe

Leisure and Entertainment[edit]

  • The Lilongwe Golf Club is situated in Old Town, being the only 18-hole golf course in the country. The club also hosts an Olympic-size swimming pool.[8]
  • The Lilongwe Wildlife Center is situated between Old Town and the city center, and serves as a wildlife sanctuary and popular place of excursion for the city's residents.[9]
  • The Umunthu Theatre regularly hosts plays, comedy, bands, film and club nights.[10] A variety of bars and night clubs offer opportunities for live music and parties.[11]

Food[edit]

See also: Malawian cuisine

Due in part to the growth of the expatriate community and the increasing importance of tourism, the number of international restaurants has risen very rapidly over recent years. The city now offers a rich and internationalized diversity of cuisine, such as Chinese, Korean, Italian, and Indian food.[12] Fast-food is also popular, Steers having several branches in the city.

Youth centres[edit]

There are several youth centres in this town. The city assembly runs the Lilongwe community ground located close to police unit south east of the main bus terminal. The youth centre is surrounded by a wall 10 metres high. Local teams and youth use the facilities to play basketball, football, karate, boxing, volleyball, and many other games.[citation needed]

Another major youth centre is Don Bosco Youth Centre located at Area 23, on the outskirts of the town. It is run by the Salesians of Don Bosco. Young people come to this place to play and pray. In addition to the good grounds and courts that it has, there is a technical school that holds over 600 young people who train in different trades.[13]

Transportation[edit]

Lilongwe to Johannesburg bus

Airport[edit]

Lilongwe's Kamuzu International Airport (LLW) fields regular flights to Johannesburg, Addis Ababa, Nairobi, Lusaka and domestic services to Blantyre. The airport is located to the north of Lilongwe, approximately 20 kilometers from the City Centre.[14] The Airport serves as a hub for Malawian Airlines. Kamuzu International Airport replaced Lilongwe's old airport, 6 kilometers west of the City, in 1977. The old airport is occasionally used by Malawi Defense Forces.

Buses[edit]

There are regular bus services from Lilongwe to Blantyre, Zomba, Kasungu and Mzuzu.[15] Regular services connect Lilongwe with cities in neighboring countries, such as Johannesburg, Harare and Dar-es-salaam.

Rail[edit]

There is a rail service to Lilongwe. To the west the line runs towards Zambia, and to the east to Salima.[16]

Education[edit]

There are 38 private and 66 public primary schools with a total of 103,602 pupils as well as 29 secondary schools with 30,795 students in Lilongwe.[2] Lilongwe is also an educational centre of Malawi. The city is home to many Educational Institutions, including:

Sports[edit]

See also: Sports in Malawi

A new national stadium with a capacity of 40,000 is currently being constructed with the help of a $70 million loan form the Government of the People's Republic of China.[21]

Silver Strikers F.C., Blue Eagles, CIVO United, EPAC United, and Kamuzu Barracks are all playing in the Malawi Premier Division.

Sister Cities[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "DPP councillor elected Mayor of Lilongwe: Willie Chipondera, deputy Kwame Bandawe". Malawi Nyasa Times - Malawi breaking news in Malawi. 
  2. ^ a b c d e http://www.zaragoza.es/contenidos/medioambiente/onu//issue06/1136-eng.pdf
  3. ^ "Lilongwe Malawi - Travel Guide - Tourist Information". wawamalawi.com. 
  4. ^ "Lilongwe". expertafrica.com. 
  5. ^ a b http://www.malawitourism.com/pages/attractions/the_attraction.asp?AttractionsID=13
  6. ^ a b "Malawi Reports: Urban Profiles of Blantyre, Lilongwe, Mzuzu and Zomba". UrbanAfrica.Net. 
  7. ^ Lilongwe Climate Normals, accessed 2 December 2012
  8. ^ http://www.lilongwegolfclub.com/
  9. ^ "Lilongwe Wildlife Trust". Lilongwe Wildlife Trust. 
  10. ^ "Umunthu Theatre". Retrieved February 17, 2015. 
  11. ^ "Entertainment in Lilongwe". Lonely Planet. Retrieved February 17, 2015. 
  12. ^ Lonely Planet http://www.lonelyplanet.com/malawi/lilongwe/restaurants. Retrieved February 17, 2015.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  13. ^ "Don Bosco Youth Technical Institute - Lilongwe". dbc-malawi.org. 2012. Retrieved 5 April 2012. 
  14. ^ "(LLW) Lilongwe International Airport". flightstats.com. 
  15. ^ "Getting there & away". Lilongwe. Lonely Planet. Retrieved 7 May 2013. 
  16. ^ "(Malawi Rail Map)" (PDF). Railroad Development Corporation. Retrieved 24 September 2014. 
  17. ^ Super User. "Bunda - Home". luanar.mw. 
  18. ^ "MIM - Contact Us". mim.co.mw. 
  19. ^ http://www.kcn.unima.mw/index.php/submit-an-article/programmes/70-welcome-to-kamuzu-college-of-nursing
  20. ^ "Lilongwe Technical College". unicon.net. 
  21. ^ "Malawi, China sign loan agreement to construct new stadium". Malawi Nyasa Times - Malawi breaking news in Malawi. 
  22. ^ "Taipei City Council". tcc.gov.tw. 
  23. ^ http://allafrica.com/stories/200408200493.html
  • Gerke, W.J.C. & Viljoen, Charl J. Master Plan for Lilongwe the Capital City of Malawi (Johannesburg: Swan Publishing, 1968)

External links[edit]

Lilongwe travel guide from Wikivoyage