History of the Malawi National Anthem

History of the Malawi National Anthem

A few months before independence, a competition was held to find the national anthem with a 100-pounds cash prize.

Composed by Micheal Sauka, the ‘Mulungu dalitsani Malawi’ song won and was declared the official national anthem in 1964.

The opening lines ‘Oh God bless our land of Malawi’ showers blessings upon the nation.

A prayer against hunger, disease and envy.

As the anthem continues, it celebrates Malawi’s natural beauty.

Its hills, rich soil, lakes and valleys.

The last verse is a plea for unity in order to build Malawi.

In times of peace and war, by both men and women.

There are two versions of the song, an original in Chichewa and a translation in English.

Chichewa Lyrics

Mulungu dalitsani Malawi, Mumsunge mm’tendere.
Gonjetsani adani onse, Njala, nthenda, nsanje.
Luzitsani mitima yathu, Kuti tisaope.
Mdalitse mtsogoleli nafe, Ndi mayi Malawi.

Malawi ndziko lokongola, Lachonde ndi ufulu.
Nyanja ndi mphepo ya m’mapiri, Ndithudi tadala.
Zigwa, mapiri, nthaka, dzinthu, N’mphatso zaulere.
Nkhalango madambo abwino.
Ngwokoma Malawi.

O ufulu tigwirizane, Kukweza Malawi.
Ndi chikondi, Khama, kumvera, Timutumikire.
Pa nkhondo nkana pa mtendere, Cholinga n’chimodzi.
Mayi, bamboo, tidzipereke, Pokweza Malawi.

English Lyrics

Oh God bless our land of Malawi, keep it a land of peace.
Put down each and every enemy, hunger, disease and envy.
Join together, all our hearts as one, that we be free from fear.
Bless our leader, each and every one, and mother Malawi.

Our own Malawi, this land so fair fertile and brave and free.
With its lakes, refreshing mountain air, how greatly blest are we.
Hills and valleys, soil so rich and rare.
Give us a bounty fee.
Wood and forest, plains so broad and fair, all- beauteous Malawi.

Freedom ever, let us all unite to build up Malawi.
With our love, our zeal and loyalty, bringing our best to her.
In time of war, or in time of peace, one purpose and one goal.
Men and women serving selflessly in building Malawi.