Magistrate Nyakwawa Usiwa Usiwa, in delivering Tuesday’s judgment in a small courtroom in Blantyre, the country’s commercial capital, was similarly stern. He referred to the crime as “buggery,” using language from when Malawi was a British colony and the current law was written.
He found both men guilty of “carnal knowledge” that was “against the order of nature.” He said the two had been “living together as husband and wife,” which “transgresses the Malawian recognized standards of propriety.”
As the judgment was translated for them from English into Chichewa, the defendants barely flinched. Then they were hastened out of a back door, escaping a taunting crowd that already was celebrating their conviction.