Our Republic of Malawi, our responsibility

My fellow Malawians, let’s take some time to carefully think about what is going on in our Country at the moment. I know there are a lot of mixed emotions flaring around such as anger, excitement, worry, joy, well God knows what else people are feeling or going through depending on their positions and intentions on the matter.

Question is, what do we do about it as a whole, as a country, as victims, as people responsible?

I don’t want to waste much time so I will just go straight to explaining why I think we are all also responsible for this in one way or another. We are the ones who put these people where they are, we are supposed to be making sure that they are doing their job right, we are supposed to be watching them. Instead, it had to take God himself to show us what we should have been paying attention to in the first place.

We Malawians seem to act as if we were taken from lands far away from here and dropped off in this land called Malawi and someone is supposed to fix it all up nicely for us while providing minimal input. Even our Government institutions are poorly run to the point that most people complain about Government services. We have even gotten used to saying “Umadziwa paja za M’boma (something like don’t expect much from government)”.

Malawians unite in protests when things go wromg

Malawians unite in protests when things go wromg

For how long are we going to say this and not do something about it? Kodi bomali silathu, kapena mwina tikuchita kusungitsa kale? (Isn’t this our Government, or maybe someone is just keeping it for us?) I thought we have already been down that path and fought for our independence and freedom to govern ourselves. Free and independent we call ourselves, THE REPUBLIC OF MALAWI. Doesn’t that mean that the supreme power lies in us citizens since we are entitled to vote for officers and representatives responsible to us? If that is the case, how did we let this happen and what are we going to do about it? I myself included is responsible for this as I have been part of the team that just complains about matters while sitting back expecting someone else to do something about it, waiting for things to miraculously change while providing minimal input.

This country belongs to us all and as such, it’s all our responsibility to contribute to matters that affect this country, our home. My suggestion in this matter is that we need to make some serious changes if we expect any real progress. We need to first be able to accept making mistakes where necessary then dedicate the requirements to correcting these mistakes as individuals.

Secondly, we need to take the fact that this is our country and that we are the ones who can make it better seriously. I think we don’t take it seriously enough because if we did, we would be doing whatever it took to collectively improve it and not damage it. We need to have a mothers love for this country and stop looking at immediate benefits and start focusing on long term gains. Wouldn’t it be better for us to suffer now while setting up something for our children to build on, knowing that putting ourselves in harm way right now guarantees a better future for them? Where is this Country going to end up if we keep having a selfish mentality?

Thirdly, when electing the people to represent us, let us stop following the wrong incentives like money or political gains. Actually if I had to give any advice to the parties contesting in next year’s elections, it would be for the presidents of these parties to choose vice presidents and a team which has the leaders vision and not just someone who will boost their votes regardless of their vision for the country. The presidents also need to represent the people. We have been doing it the other way round for a while now and it doesn’t seem to be working. We can’t keep having the same recycled politicians who have perfected the current way of doing things.

We need people who really truly care about this country and its future. People who can come up with good policies and enforce them, policies which will serve and protect all the people regardless of their political affiliation, tribe or GPS location. We also need a strong opposition, one which can help check these policies and provide a balance, not just an opposition whose main and only objective is to oppose. This country belongs to both the government and the opposition. Why should we be wasting our resources and energy on things that damage this country in the long run? Kapenatu mwina tikadzaononga dzikoli tidzakapempha lina kwina? (Maybe after we mess up this country we will go beg for another one somewhere else?)

Another thing we need to change are the reasons for wanting to work for the government. We shouldn’t only be willing to work for the government because we think that even though the salary is not enough, but at least there are certain benefits such as travel allowances, retirement plans or easy access to loans from the banks. Instead, we need to join the government because we want to contribute something positive to our country and help get it somewhere.

We Malawians are lucky enough to have a good reputation abroad for being good hard honest workers. We need to start applying the same skills here at home and those who have been fortunate enough to learn something somewhere that would benefit us all should teach others these thing. Teaching each other mwa chikondi chathu chija cha chi Malawi (teaching each other with our traditional love) which unfortunately also seems to be slowly decreasing. I keep hearing that these days its every man for himself. I thought Malawi was also a God fearing nation, where or when has our God taught us some of these things which we have started believing in and applying to our daily lives?

We need to be very very careful, we can’t live like a nation that doesn’t believe in anything as doing so will lead us astray and to our own destruction. I am not making these suggestions as part of any political party or religious group, but as a citizen of this country who believes that as citizens, we are all equally responsible for our country and its future. We can’t keep sitting back watching while our country burns. If we expect any real changes and progress, we need to first individually make some changes. Only then can we start making some progress and seeing some real changes.

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