Why do Malawians tolerate suffering?

The answer to the above question is anybody’s guess.

President Mutharika with leader of opposiiton Lazarous chakwera after opening parliament

President Mutharika with leader of opposiiton Lazarous Chakwera :DPP government is flip-flopping

During the three decades of dictatorship under Dr Kamuzu Banda, Malawians went through a lot of suffering due to various atrocities. Anyone perceived to have crossed Dr Banda’s path, would face all manner of punishments. Unfortunately, people had to suffer in silence because there was no freedom of expression. One had to look over the shoulder before making any comment on government.

To be fair to Dr Banda, people might have accommodated the suffering because he showed a lot of patriotism in his quest to prove that he was capable of governing the country. He made sure that among other things, hospitals had medicines all the time, the civil service was well-disciplined and paid on time, education was of very high standard, people had enough food all the time, agriculture was booming as fertiliser and chemicals were at affordable prices and there was security for people and their property.

The situation is different now. A catalogue of maladministration in the democratic rule has deprived Malawians of acceptable standards of life. People are literally in the jaws of poverty and life is becoming unbearable.

Surprisingly, despite the freedom of speech, most people still prefer to suffer in silence. Simply put, this is fear of the unknown. People seem to be so brainwashed to believe in empty promises and assurances by government. Imagine, nowadays going to a government hospital is just a formality as one is likely not to be treated due to lack of medicines.

Interestingly, even the President was quoted in the newspapers saying it was news to him that hospitals have run out of medicines. For goodness sake, if the President is not aware of shortages of medicines, then whose job is it to know? If the President knows nothing, then people become helpless and hopeless.

Currently, the commercial city of Blantyre is hit by long spells of dry taps. This has now turned into a perennial problem. What is the government doing and for how long will people continue to suffer? The main problem with this government is that its priorities seem to be upside down. Does it make sense to spend K300 million on Independence celebrations instead of fixing water problems once and for all?

With all due respect, the Peter Mutharika administration is flip-flopping. The idea of laying a foundation stone here and there or launching this report and that plan while so many outstanding problems remain unsolved cannot take this country anywhere. It is now just going round in circles as it spirals downwards.

Meanwhile, the ball is in every Malawian’s court. This is not the time to take a back seat and wait while gruesome murders are taking place. Indeed, it is spine-chilling when one hears about bodies being found without heads, let alone private parts. The ripple effect of this is that people cannot go out to work in their fields for fear of their lives.

This is not the time to ask about what activists such as Billy Mayaya or Livingstonia Synod are saying.

Activists and other commentators need everyone’s support. It is on record that time and again activists have petitioned government on various issues. The outcome of such petitions is very obscure. Most likely, the petitions are gathering dust in some government office.

nFreedom of speech is the voice of reason for everyone. Therefore, tolerating suffering should be a thing of the past. Malawians have to wake up for our country not to be perpetually used as an example of a poorly run state.

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21 thoughts on “Why do Malawians tolerate suffering?”

  1. Chinyanga says:

    Am extremely conviced to the best of my knowledge that malawi runs on herself without a leader(s)

  2. Public Pensioner says:

    We had a professional civil service during the one party dictatorship, This has now turned into a tribal circus for obvious reasons-theft and plunder of public resources for clan gain. Unless we re-establish a professional civil service, it is hard to see a turn around our national fortunes.

  3. Tikupepesa says:

    Q: Why do Malawians tolerate suffering?

    A: Because only a minority people from one part of the country stand up to such rampant misuse of our resources and daylight theft of our wealth. The rest have been well brainwashed that ALL they need is a leader from among them.

  4. jimbo says:

    Someone said ‘People get the government/leaders they deserve’. This is certainly true of Malawians. They moan and complain about the DPP getting into government through the back door (i.e. stealing the election), and they continue to moan and complain that the DPP is doing nothing to solve the country’s problems. What is needed is ACTION! Malawians don’t have to put up with this useless government any longer. With a concerted effort – demonstrations, civil disobedience, protests – they should be able to unseat APM and his useless ministers and call for a new election. Of course they must not get involved in violence of any kind or they will give the government an excuse to respond with violence. Peaceful protest is what is needed but it must be well organised and determined.

  5. A Bazza says:

    This government will not change anything for the better.

  6. Paul Mapanga says:

    and people claim Kamuzu was bad in these times were living and suffering i would say dictatorship is better because with democracy we always end up chosing leaders that dont deliver

  7. Zagwa says:

    Nice article which should be our war chant! We have been taken for a ride for too long! If you were seen to be suffering with us maybe we would understand. But we look at the motorcades of the president and the vice president who we know came in through rigging, we are getting angrier by the day. You so very much wanted to rule so don’t tell us that you inherited empty coffers!

  8. Lost Soldier says:

    Ambuye che Pitala. Apatu game yafoila

  9. Charombanthu says:

    My immediate response to this question of why Malawians tolerate suffering is that it is because “Malawians are not patriotic” – we do not love our country. We have allowed or tolerated mediocrity to be entrenched in our midst without questioning, let alone criticising it, in the name of loyalty to those entrusted to lead us i.e. blind loyalty. Even when our chosen leaders stray, instead of criticising them for their wrongs, we have opted to bury our heads in the sand and treat everything as “business as usual”. We are all human beings and as they say “to err is human”. I believe that as a nation, let us point out the wrongs that our entrusted leaders are perpetrating and praise them for the good deeds and likewise, let those entrusted in the leadership roles, including the citizen No.1, acknowledge when they stray and celebrate together with everyone when they score points. Paul Kagame has transformed Rwanda in the last 20 years (since the genocide ended in 1994) beyond anyone’s belief. We have to change our mindset. Period.

  10. RICARDO says:

    The muthalika family doesn’t give a dammn abt pipo but money n them selves

  11. Jesus reigns says:

    Malawi, why not to impeach this president of yours? Why will you suffer and die jst becoz this one man? Fear will bring you Malawians into a deep trouble . Wake up and say no to that situation, impeach, impeach, and impeach him.

  12. Jelbin mk" remember says:

    People in Malawi di express themselves especially Malawians from the north but what do we see in reaction to that? Name callings Atumbuka nzdiidzikonda asiyeni asova

  13. becks says:

    Too much talk without action will take us nowhere. Nobody seems ready to challenge this docile government.

  14. Dwambazi says:

    We have no one to blame but ourselves. We as Malawians are the enablers to the sorry situation we have found ourselves in. We have relinguished all our power as a people to a few vagabonds, who because of our inability to protest the in humane situation Malawians are facing, they have quickly driven this country into trenches of despair. Polytechnic students appropriately protested last week but instead of joining them we all looked the other way.
    Our neighbor Zambia (45 minute flight , only 5-6 hour drive) is developing at an impressive rate, the Zambian Kwacha is appreciating while development in Malawi is non-existent. Malawi Kwacha is depreciating during the tobacco season ( something that has never happened before). Health care system is at its worst and education system is in shambles.

    Where are the Orton Chirwas, Vera Chirwas, Kanyame Chiumyes, Rose Chibambos, John Chilembwes, the Chisizas, the Chipemberes of today. Where are the brave men and women? Where is the voice of reason.??? How can we accept the status quo??? How can we be silenced with money??? Where is our moral campus????.

    We all need to wake up from our deep slumber, we need a revolution folks and I’m in.

  15. mtumbuka1 says:

    Mutharika and his dpp must take full responsibility for whatever is happening in that useless country. I see some dpp bootlickers shifting the blame to cashgate but you know pretty well who the architects of cashgate are. You have been having useless leaders since time in memorial who failed to turn around that country. Kamuzu tried his best but after him came mbuzi one after the other and alot more mbuzi awaits to jump on the band wagon. You have a president sleeping at the state house, kwacha is a big joke today but you have an old man calling himself an economist in Goodall gondwe who passed his sale date but there are no calls to fire the bustard. Malawians love some small glories i.e. The manipulated figures of Goodall gondwe which when they point east, Goodall says they are pointing west. Simply put Malawi is a failed state with it’s un educated masses. That is why some of us left the useless country and won’t come back!

  16. Alufeyo says:

    APM knows that there are no medicines in our hospitals and he knows that Feston Kaupa and Dr Moses Chisale are corruptly destroying CMST but nothing can be done since the two are funding Ben Phiri. The level of corruption at CMST is mind bonggling. Kaupa and Chisale are daily collecting millions from Victoria pharmacies and some company called Angels…….with the full knowledge of APM and Mkondiwa. Yes lets start paying for hospital services but again lets clean up CMST. I dare APM to just visit CMST wharehouses he will be disappointed with millions of littes of unwanted spirit which was bought just to share money. There is no planning always buying on emergencies. Zomba mafia which even JB couldnt tolerate.

  17. Analisiti wamkulu says:

    Loads are of them are plain stupid.

  18. Bola Kwimuka. says:

    The problem does not lie in Prof APM and Dr SC Chilima. The problem is in the systems they inherited and continue to implement. They have this fear that if changed, they will be unpopular. We need to start all over again. We need total revamp starting from the way we think, the way we work. Education, health, security, energy, infrastructure (road network being part of it)….Trade etc. It really doesn’t matter whether it is APM, Dr Laz or Kamlepo at the appex…if we don’t change these, we will be worse with each regime coming in.

  19. Bola Kwimuka. says:

    With due respect to my sister Emily Mkamanga, (NyaUnthali)…I would disagree with you on a few points.
    Point 1… FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION!…one has to know what they would like to express freely. With the high rate of illiteracy in Malawi,does the majority of Malawians know anything? And those who are in the know, have you not seen for yourself how freely they have expressed themselves by freely dipping their filthy hands into government coffers (Cashgate) without an ounce of guilty conscious? Giving Malawians any freedoms equals and amounts to giving a mad man a loaded gun. Do you need any more evidence? And even the few cases brought to courts of law….haven’t you seen how justice is manipulated? ….should you anymore wonder why there was development, infrastructural and otherwise, during Kamuzu’ era? Sometimes discipline, like loyalty, obedience, let alone unity must be forced to make headway.
    2…FREE MEDICAL
    15 million people waiting for free medical consultation and free medication. I bet…you can only find that in heaven, and ie, if you you trust and obey while still in this life. Not even oil rich Qatar can afford that. Do you think poorest Malawi, with almost zero resources can, with tax collections? Add to it subsidized fertilizer. …alas! We just total revamp of the whole system. No government, even if you vote a new one, can afford that. Even if you give this task to Obama. We just need debate and graduate from that.
    We are also so lazy as a people! Too lazy in fact to bail ourselves out of this mess. Kuba ndi kupempha has become our speciality…the future looks even more worrisome. The caliber of our graduates….kaput, let alone the standard of teachers right from primary school to secondary school….my foot! We need to revamp the whole education system right from Primary school to secondary. We just have to start again. My suggestion is we have to have 3 levels…junior primary school with strict monitoring, mid/ senior Primary and then Secondary school……then tertiary….we can debate. Refine aphunzitsi. Instill strict discipline at all levels. Human rights without responsibility equals future turmoi..

    I will agree with you. …security is at its lowest. You need to visit just one Police station to know we have lost direction. You will be shocked with the amount of katangale taking place. Officers asking for suspects to pay MONEY for bail and other services. The COMMANDER IN CHIEF, and INSPECTOR GENERAL must be taken to task.

  20. Sayimoni Bayisikolo says:

    We have misinterpreted docility and stupidity for respect.During Kamuzu Banda times we were brainwashed that Kamuzu Banda was the messiah who saved us from the fangs of the colonialists as if he fought singlehandedly to chase away the colonialists.During my primary days we had an myp teachers who used to sing us that everything belongs to Kamuzu and anybody was not supposed to mention the name of Kamuzu anyhow fearing of being picked by the ruthless short wearing police who were ready to clobber you with their baton sticks before asking and leaving you in one of the filthy prisons without having any justice applied on you.Somehow oppressive it was,but people had discipline than this time.A civil servant never dared to touch a single penny even if you were let to sleep on a sack of billion kwachas knowing that you will never see a day light in your life time as baton sticks will be raining on your head like a doll all the way to prisons to eat nsima with some countable bean seeds full of salt.Malawians grew with that forced patriotism and loyalty of the dog.The Mbc on the only state radio sponsored station kept reminding us that they was only one Kamuzu in Malawi and only choice of songs was of his Mbumba from Chitipa to Nsanje reminded repeatedly by the die hards like Ungapake Tembos,Gwandangulube Chakuambas and others that Kamuzu is saviour who saved from the jaws of the colonialists.Despite being in multiparty era alot of Malawians are still are in fear and slumber having still psychological impact on them.They can’t distinguish between fear and respect.No wonder they have been exploited by their fellow Malawians and including foreigners because Malawians cannot stand up tall and challenge some one if things are going wrong.Tili ndi ka Chichewa kobowa kokuti” ndi nthawi yawo”as if it is right to trample on us like door mats.Its time Malawians walked tall and kept their heads up and challenged the authority when things go wrong.Malawi is sinking on daily basis.The situation in villages is pathetic including in towns.People have been reduced living like animals.Life has become very unaffordable to every Malawian.They are no jobs in Malawi.The economy is shambles.All the public funds has shared by the cashgate people and the crooked politicians.This Pitala mbyofo mbyofo nyapaphi wamutharika has totally failed Malawians.The only thing remaining on him is being reminding us of him about his professorship now and then as if that alone will put food on tables of Malawians.

  21. khalupa says:

    Auto pilot things…..sucks.
    Kaya saona iwowo mxiew.

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