PRESIDENT Joyce has told traditional birth attendants (TBAs) to stop offering delivery services for expectant women.
Banda issued the ban when she laid a foundation stone for a maternity holding shelter at Mulanje Hospital.
Malawi Health Equity Network (MHEN) has since commended the president for the decision.
In her speech at the function,Banda said the TBAs can only function as a "referral point" and not as delivery service personnel.
"Traditional Birth Attendants (TBAs) must stop giving delivery services. What we need to do is that traditional birth attendants can have a good role to play. Because they are experienced they can be referral point," she said.
She said it is disheartening that Malawi is ranked second among countries with a high maternal mortality rate.
"Please do not allow women to die in villages, our chiefs have power to make decrees in villages.
I do not want to usurp the work the Ministry of Health is doing but we know that in Africa the rate of maternal deaths is first in Sierra Leone then here in Malawi; that is how embarrassing it is.
"My political will is that I must take the lead so that we change these figures. People even laugh at us thinking we are at war and they mock me asking whether we are shooting women only," she said.
Banda said she launched the Presidential Initiative on Safe Motherhood in April as a starting point of her mission and had pledged that the initiative will build 130 maternity holding shelters across the country and that it will train 50 nurses to alleviate the problem of lack of nurses.
"I was told that two women had miscarriages because they had to walk a long distance. It is painful that nine months of pregnancy should go in vain.
"I have decided there should be holding shelters so that pregnant women should come two weeks before the day of delivery.
She made a call to men, especially newly married ones, to take care of their expectant wives and also called on parents not to force their children into early marriages.
The holding shelters will be built in two months and will start operating in August. The shelter in Mulanje is being built by Standard Bank.
Executive Director for MHEN Martha Kwataine said TBAs have done more harm than good in the field of maternal mortality in Malawi.
"There have been several researches whose results have shown that traditional birth attendants have made cases on maternal death high because they are not properly equipped. We tried to train them so that they should handle referral cases but they did not comply," she said.
Previously, government had a policy that banned TBAs but it was overturned by the late president Bingu wa Mutharika about two years ago.
The unbanning was received with mixed reactions among activists on safe motherhood in Malawi.