How we met:
MIKE MUGALA, Lusaka
MIYOBA Sumaili could not believe it when Angela Mbewe agreed to his marriage proposal twelve years ago.
Miyoba met Angela at Africa Directions Recreation Centre in Mtendere township in 2002, when they were attending a Zambia card-making workshop. Upon setting his eyes on her, he was struck by her beauty and started to develop interest in her.
“She looked beautiful and made my heart beat. I did not hesitate to greet her. She was close to my friend, Joseph Mubanga, so I confided in him and told him that I liked Angela and wanted a relationship with her,” he said.
It took Miyoba two weeks to tell Angela that he liked her from the first time the two greeted. From there, he started making frequent visits to her home with the support of his friend, Joseph.
Though Angela was hesitant to accept his proposal because she had just completed her secondary education and wanted to go to college, Miyoba did not give up his pursuit.
As a way of winning her heart, Miyoba told Angela that he was willing to take her to college when they got married. The pair traditionally got married in 2004 and the same year, she went to pursue a career in teaching at Copperbelt Secondary Teachers’ College (COSETCO) in Kitwe.
Miyoba gave Angela his Automated Teller Machine (ATM) card and started depositing his monthly salary as a way of showing commitment and fulfilling his promise.
“Most of the family members and friends started laughing at me when I gave my ATM card to my wife. They told me that she was going to leave me for another man when she completes her teaching course, but that did not bother me because I trusted and loved so much,” he said.
Now with five children and 12 years in marriage, Miyoba has learnt that good communication and understanding are vital in marriage.
He observed that every marriage has its own problems but a couple must be willing to sit down together and discuss.
Miyoba said people must not publicise their marital problems to their friends because this can contribute to breaking a marriage.
“Marriage is something that is fun and nice, it makes a man complete. I feel like part of my body is missing whenever my wife is not around. Love conquers everything, I don’t believe that marriage is a ‘shipikisha club’ as purported by some people,” he explained.
Miyoba has described his wife as a caring, loving, kind, and responsible woman and he loves his family.
He noted that some of the marriages break down because couples rush into them.
Miyoba is of the view that the advancement in technology has negatively impacted on some marriages.
“Young people getting married nowadays have lost respect for elders and behave as if they know everything. Respect for elders plays a huge role in upholding a marriage. People must take keen interest in knowing their partner’s background before they go into marriage,” he said.
Angela did have an idea that Miyoba was interested in her the first time they met.
She only began to have an idea after he started visiting her home once every week.
She hesitated to accept his proposal as she thought he was not serious.
“I thought he was joking when he said he was interested in me. I only accepted him the fourth time. I only started liking him when we got close and it was from here that my love for him began to grow,” Angela narrated.
Angela said some of her friends were against her relationship with Miyoba, but she did not give up her love for him.
Experience has told her that it is always important for people in a relationship to adjust and understand what their partner wants.
Angela said though it is somehow challenging to live with someone you have never grown up with, people must know the strengths and weaknesses of their partner.
“No marriage is the same. People must not compare their marriage to that of their friend but learn to resolve their own affairs. Material things are not important in marriage, people must love and embrace their partner for a marriage to work,” she said.
She has advised women to always play their roles in marriage and not live everything to their maids, despite their social status.
Angela has described her husband as her pillar and source of strength in times of difficulty.
“I would like to thank my husband for the support that he has offered to me. He took me to school and I now have a degree in secondary teaching. Men must always support their wives so that they become financially independent,” she said.
The couple lives in Kamwala. Miyoba is an actor and head for administration and logistics at Africa Directions while Angela is a teacher at Arakan Girls’ Secondary School.