POLYGAMY is just a selfish matter for men, newly-appointed World Bank alternative executive director Dr Denny Hamachila Kalyalya has observed.
Dr Kalyalya discourages men from marrying more than one wife as such old-age traditional norms amount to injustice to children who grow up in polygamous homes.
“My dad had more than one wife. This is one thing I would counsel men especially,” Dr Kalyalya says. “I think it’s a selfish matter for men because you are the only person who is at the centre here. Rarely do you think about the children. It’s not easy growing in an environment such as that. I would counsel fellow men that think twice, even three times before you decide to have such a family because you are not doing justice to your children. You think what you like, they also like. And it can be harsh in some of these homes. I learnt a lot from my father.”
Dr Kalyalya, who has traversed the country’s economic path in the last three decades rising from an economics student to a lecturer and eventually a senior Central banker, shares his profile below.
Question: Who is Dr Denny Kalyalya?
Answer: Dr Denny Kalyalya is a 53-year-old Zambian born on 1st August, 1957 in Monze in chief Choongo’s area, village Ng’andu. The fond name for the village is Majoni. Ng’andu is the official name but it was named after my father’s father who was nicknamed – a guard or a soldier. In Tonga, a guard is called mujoni. And he liked to wear long coats, so, it became like his name and that is what has stayed to today. Although after his demise, the village split because he was married to more than one wife. I actually did not know my actual birthday until much later after university. In fact, in my National Registration Card, it is just blank. So, when I tried to correct later, they said ‘no, the original record is showing this’. How I found out was that my dad was quite meticulous at keeping records… so one day we were just going through the things and we found… because he used to tell us that ‘I wrote somewhere because each child who was born I used to write in a small book’. So, we were anxious to know what is in that small book. As luck would have, we found it and there were it was 1st August, 1957.
I am the sixth born in a family of six. My fathers’ names were Luka Hamachila Ng’andu Kalyalya and my mother’s names are Mary Chzyuka Kalyalya. Our first born brother is Mr Leonard Kalyalya who is in the village, second born brother is Roy, the third born is the sister Molly, she is home with our mother. The fourth born is Joy Kalyalya who is a lecturer at Zambia Open University, then the sister I follow is Margaret.
I am married to Ada Mwale Kalyalya. I met this lady in 1983-84. We got married in 1985. We just celebrated our 25th anniversary although we did not have a function because scheduling became quite a challenge for our children. Our first born is a boy and our second born is a boy. They were both born in the US. The first born Machila Tabile Kalyalya who was named after my dad was born on 11th of June 1987 and he is at University of Namibia doing computer science. The second born is Kafumu Mwele Kalyalya, he is at American University at Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates. He is doing civil engineering and the third born is Kafumu who was born in 1988. They just have one and a half years difference.