Media Council describes the death as a big loss
Malawi Human Rights Commission (MHRC) Chairperson Reverend Patrick Semphere, has succumbed to Covid-19.
MHRC Executive Secretary Habiba Osman, has confirmed in statement saying Reverend Semphere died this morning at Bwaila Hospital in Lilongwe.
But Osman could not clearly state if he has died from Covid-19.
However a family member Chimwemwe Mizaya, confirmed that the veteran media expert has died from the pandemic.
"He was diagnosed with Covid-19, and we are proceeding with burial ceremony this afternoon [Thursday] at Chimwanya Village just after Area 25C in Lilongwe,” disclosed Mizaya.
Former President Peter Mutharika appointed Semphere as the Chairperson of MHRC in 2020.
During his leadership at MHRC, he lobbied for more funds towards the implementation of the Access to Information (ATI) law.
He will also be remembered for having moderated the country's first ever presidential debates in 2019.
Between the years from 2007 to 2014, Reverend Semphere served as the Chairperson for the Media Council of Malawi (MCM).
Meanwhile, MCM has described his death as a big blow to the industry.
In a statement released on January 21 2021, signed by the Board Chairperson Wisdom Chimgwede and the Executive Director Moses Kaufa said Semphere who until his death was the trustee of the council will be remembered for his commitment, support and passion for media professionalism.
"His passing has left a mark on the hearts of many veteran journalists and those still in the media industry who have worked with him as well as those who have felt the impact of his work in a number of ways," reads the statement in part.
Reverend Semphere, who was also a pastor at Area 47 Word Alive Ministries International Church, is survived by a wife, three children and 7 siblings.