Tiwonge Chimbalanga and Steven Monjeza made their first public appearance Wednesday since being pardoned for holding a public engagement ceremony, and they praised President Bingu wa Mutharika for relieving them of their 14-year sentence.
According to Agence France-Presse, the couple issued a statement that said, "The president has demonstrated that he is a caring father, a considerate and tolerant president. We wish him good health in his everyday endeavours as he continues leading the country to respecting human rights and to economic prosperity."
Chimbalanga and Monjeza held a brief news conference in Lilongwe and asked that the public respect their privacy after what they called "the most stressful period in our lives," according to AFP.
Their pardon Saturday stemmed from a meeting between President Mutharika and U.N. secretary general Ban Ki-moon.