It’s Loose Cannon’s first newlog for 2016 and I start by wishing you all my readers a happy new year.
Maybe due to the positive work attitude that they generally displayed during the Theba days, Malawians earned the accolade of being hard working people in South Africa. Malawians were the much-sought-after commodity for anyone looking for manual labour that side because they generally worked hard and usually without complaining much about low pay.
That was, however, long time ago, and that accolade has either disappeared or is fast receding in the distance. It is a different story now. Malawi is now earning a reputation as a bastion of jealous and envy – the National Anthem really proclaims who we are.
Laziness is becoming legendary and backbiting is the favourite pastime. People rarely and barely engage in any productive work. They are always looking for aid or freebies.
Malawi is currently going through various social and economic challenges. Much as the DPP government says challenges are universal and not particularly unique to Malawi, one would insist that a lot of the problems that the country is currently experiencing are as a result of our lack of focus on real issues.
Some problems are so peculiar and particular to Malawi that it would be impossible to say we imported them from Tanzania, Zambia or Mozambique. President Peter Mutharika and his Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), find themselves in a position of presiding over an economy that is deemed to be the poorest in the world.
More disheartening is the fact that the countries that we are competing with for space at the end of the queue, are mostly war-ravaged, some of them just newly created and smarting from some spine-breaking internal squabbles.
It is during crisis times like these that true leadership is exhibited. True leadership is about having a clear vision that is clearly aimed at taking the people to the promised land of social, economic and political harmony; a land in which everyone is equal under the law; where freedom to carry out social and economic enterprises abounds.
Leadership is about making the people, or everybody else see that vision as the leader sees it. It is about making everybody a stakeholder in the quest to attain that vision. A true and transformational leader takes the people with him on a path towards a journey to achieve a shared vision.
If the Peter Mutharika government has a vision to emancipate this country from its socioeconomic quagmire, then we have not heard about it. Malawi need to listen to the ‘game-changer’ action plan.
What is evident from DPP government’s action is the continuous fire-fighting and scheming to deal with its political enemies – real and perceived – using state machinery.
The leadership we are talking about is virtually absent, and everyone including people close to Mutharika, are busy going about their business. They are so focused on plundering and making for a rainy day that the national agenda and everything else has taken a back seat. The DPP government is practically failing to provide the most basic of social services.
The President may have a good plan but most of his lieutenants are anonymous in delivering.
Water and electricity shortages have become legendary; corruption is still rampant, there is rising insecurity and crime not to mention the impending hunger. Hospitals have now joined their prison compatriots in dishing out only a single meal a day amidst a collapsing economy.
Despite continuous assurances by Mutharika and his DPP government that things will be okay, there seem to be no progress in as far as taking Malawians out of this economic question is concerned. Our situation is becoming a true depiction of Alice in Wonderland. Malawi finds itself in a vast wonderland where everybody is lost.
Our President appears to be lost and the people that are advising him appear to be lost also. The saddest part is that APM doesn’t seem to know that he is lost and still goes about wondering like nothing is happening.
The other sad part is that citizens themselves have become complacent in this collective mediocrity. As citizens we have become acutely passive that we have become the proverbial ball to be kicked about by self-serving politicians.
Day in day out, Malawi is becoming a useless talk shop where the people kill days just by talking things that don’t mean anything in the end. We have become a pond of narrow-minded people. Do we wonder why we are taken advantage of by an inept government?
True and progressive countries are moving in the right direction by holding politicians and their government to account. The people are demanding the required constitutional order and fixing areas that hinder good governance.
Zambia has just adopted a constitution order that will require a President to be elected by 51+ 1% of voters. Now that is what we call progress. But instead of making any progress, Malawians are busy talking about gays. Government is busy shadow-boxing with Joyce Banda in the media for purely conspicuous objectives. We are busy talking about how much a car that the President will be using as a motor home is worth, and how some pastor has turned into a snake.
Visiting social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter , Instragram, Snapshot or Skype; Malawians are so obsessed with outdoing each other on who has the best hairdo, the coolest selfie; the best designer suit and who is better in beau this and that. This is hardly the discourse that would help take Malawi out of its social and economic ills. There is need for a revolution in terms of paradigm shift if we are interested to change the status quo.
Dzuka Malawi! Dzuka! Sokole Sokole!!!
Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :
“Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.” – JF Kennedy