Mahatma Gandhi has no influence on Malawi, statue ‘mockery to sovereignty’ – Paper

A petition to stop Blantyre City Council (BCC) and the Indian Government from erecting a statue of Mahatma Gandhi, an Indian activist, at Ginnery Corner in Blantyre continues to dominate Malawi media and invoking “unnecessary emotions”.

The base to host the bust of Ghandi in Blantyre

The anti-Ghandi campaigners – who have todate mobilised about 3 000 signatures online – want the city council to take action and halt all work on the statue immediately.

They have threatened to hold protests if the city will not listen to the call to stop the construction.

As part of the detailed coverage in the leading daily newspaper The Nation carried editorial comment on the matter.  titled “Mahatma Ghandi statue mockery to sovereignty.”

The paper question the terms of  agreement between the governments of Malawi and India on the statue.

“Who signed on behalf of Malawians? Who authorised use of the public land for the Ghandi statue or bust as India High Commissioner  [Suresh Kumar Menon] is putting it?” queries the paper.

It said there are scores of Malawian heroes as as African freedom fighters, including South Africa’s anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela who are much closer home and deserve such honour.

“Surely, Ghandi has no influence on the Malawi nation,” the paper pointed out, criticising Malawi government that it went “too far” by accepting the Indian Government conditionality to put the Ghandi memorial in such a prime area, without consulting the citizenry.

“Malawi is an independent sovereign State with own icons deserving such honour. If the Ghandi statue is a conditionality for the convention centre project, that is undermining the  Malawian integrity and sovereignty,” reads the paper.

In the 1 300 word petition titled ‘Stop Erecting Racist Mahatma Gandhi’s Statue at Ginnery Corner’, anti-Ghandi campaigners  states that as citizens of Malawi born out of black African descent, they were appalled with Blantyre City Council’s decision to erect Gandhi’s statue in Blantyre.

Reads the petition in part: “When it comes to Gandhi, we cannot deny that he is of historical importance to India and to the world as a symbol of activism. However, Gandhi has a questionable background and character for Malawi to honour him with a statue.”

Gandhi, a globally revered civil right activist, was born in India in 1869 and died in 1948, but literature published after his death has depicted him as a racist.

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Hera
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Hera

Kutigulitsa kwa amwenyetu uku. kwinaku tiona amwenye akuvala nawo uniform za a police ndi asilikali. Mu parliament analiwa kale.

Ken Phiri
Guest
Ken Phiri

We don’t need statues we need development projects. Mahayana Gandhi, no doubt a powerful political figure for India…but not for Malawi

Please erect in that spot a statue of Masauko Chipembere , Chakufwa Chihana or Kanyama Chiume. These are relevant political figures for Malawi.

How many statues of Africans do they have in India? There are far more important British political figures who shaped the politics and development of Malawi. We should have thought about them. Not Mahatma Gandhi! Who is Mahatma Gandi in the politics of Malawi?

Nyondo
Guest

Sometimes Poverty makes someone stop thinking can Malawian in India do that? Malawi is worse as malawi our thinking is very sloppy

Bakha
Guest
Bakha

Dziko lomvetsa chisoni ndi lochititsa manyazi. This statue ibweretsa mavuto pa ubale was Malawi ndi India as people will protest and target its demolishing. Iyi ndi misala yoza kamba ka kuledzera ndi ndalama zakuba

Chamunorwa
Guest
Chamunorwa

I am at pains to understand the logic of BCC to erect a Statue of Mahatma Ghandi along the Highway and deliberately so close to the Muslim mosque or was it a coincidence. What kind of conditions are they, that in order for the Government of India to fund the building of a convention centre in Blantyre , they BCC must accept the erection of the statue at such a vantage point. Why didn’t they choose to erect the statue or bust as some smart arse wants to call it at the convention centre or better still call the convention… Read more »

Holly Tit
Guest
Holly Tit

Put up the statue. I will throw white paint on it then dump some feces on it. The reason I’ll first paint it white is so that you can see the feces clearly.

Mswachi
Guest
Mswachi

Re-colonisation of Africa. In particular my motherland. Cry my beloved country. Cry. We have come so low that even India, I mean India can colonise us in this day, time and age. Truly a “shit-hole” country.

Ndalema
Guest
Ndalema

Za u Maliseche zeni zeni !!

chiphika
Guest
chiphika

let us continue as we did with kamuzu building the statue in Lilongwe and his graveyard, the mpumulo wabata and others as long as we feel it good for our nation.

chiphika
Guest
chiphika

i have noted concerns raised but one point I would like to point out is that probably we Malawians have failed to honour our heros as Indians are doing. I hop if we can learn a lesson from our friends and start erecting for our heros. I have seen such statues being erected in many countries but too they have their own heros. we should not espect india or any other nations to give us money to elect a statues for our heroes. it seems we want our devepment parters to assist on each and every issue. let be proud… Read more »

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