Mr. President, forgive and let go: Economist Kachaje tells Malawi leader Mutharika

I would like to humbly applaud the State President, Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika for allowing citizens of this country to ask him questions on issues of national interest.

Kachaje: President Mutharika should let it go

Having seen a promotional video clip on the program “Talk to The President” last week, I eagerly waited for days to watch my President respond to the questions people would raise.

Unfortunately, we had no power in our area due to the usual load shedding, so I had to listen to the program on radio.

Mr. President, I was happy to hear you say in that program with confidence that anywhere you have laid a foundation stone, there is construction taking place.

I and many Malawians can’t wait to see progress pictures of Mombera University and many other projects.

I was however disturbed to learn that Mr. President you still harbor deep bitterness against the Malawi Congress Party (MCP).

In your own words, Mr. President, you said, “As long as Peter Mutharika is alive, Malawi Congress Party will NEVER rule this country, because it’s a party of darkness, a bunch of murderers and I will never let them rule this country again. I am very bitter about this.”

Mr. President, watching the promotional video clip, I could tell that indeed you are still very bitter about what happened to your family more than four decades ago.

Mr. President, I can relate as my own direct uncle, the late Hardwick Adam Kachaje spent years at the infamous Dzereka prison. He was one of the Members of Parliament who were detained without trial for years after the 1964 cabinet crisis. He was not as lucky as you to have escaped the country and lived in America.

But Mr. President, I am proud to say that few years ago, my uncle died peacefully and a very free person not only because he witnessed the coming in of Multiparty democracy in 1994, but because he believed in Jesus Christ whose teachings call on us to forgive those who trespass against us.

I believe that to forgive is to set the captive free and to realize you were actually the captive.

Mr. President, I had the privilege to visit Robben Island, the notorious prison where the legendary leader, Nelson Mandela spent more than two decades of his life. Walking through that prison changed my life. Mandela had every right to hold bitterness and anger towards the whites in South Africa.

However, Mandela resolved that he would not let anger hold him prisoner but led his country into a healing process. He will forever remain a hero to both blacks and whites because he chose to let go of bitterness and walked the path of forgiveness and reconciliation.

Ahmed Kathrada, a former prisoner at Robben Island for 18 years and a very close ally to Nelson Mandela said; “While we will not forget the brutality of apartheid, we will not want Robben Island to be a monument of our hardship and suffering.

We would want it to be a triumph of the human spirit against the forces of evil. A triumph of wisdom and largeness of spirit against small minds and pettiness.

A triumph of courage and  determination over human frailty and weakness.” That is the spirit of great leaders, Mr. President. They do not let the past suffering become a monument, rather, a triumph of the human spirit against the forces of evil.

Six million Jews were mercilessly slaughtered in gas chambers in Germany and other countries such as Austria under the evil rule of Adolf Hitler. If there are people that can be allowed to hold bitterness on earth, it would be the Jews.

But they have chosen to move on and let the past be history. Today trade between Israel and German is booming. Israel exports to Germany are over US$1.5billion while its imports from Germany are nearly US$4billion.

They realize that the current leader of Germany is a lovely lady called Angela Merkel, not Adolf Hitler. Angela Merkel can no longer be said to represents a country of “darkness and murderers.”

Mr. President, during the 2014 tripartite elections, 1,904,399 Malawians wanted you to be their leader, while another 1,455,880 Malawians wanted the MCP you hate with passion to lead then under the new leadership of Dr. Lazarus Chakwera, a pastor who has spent decades preaching the gospel of love and forgiveness.

Mr. President, you are, therefore, not only a leader for the few Malawians who voted for you, but for everyone, including those who still love MCP and other political parties.

Mr. President, be a Statesman and lead our beautiful nation without bitterness. Don’t be the architect of hate speech.

Being a democratic nation, Mr. President, it is not up to you to decide whether MCP or any other party will rule this country again or not. That decision is the democratic right of the free Malawians, and not an executive decision of the President.

  • Henry Kachaje is a socio-economic development commentator, economic rights activist and entrepreneurial life coach and trainer based in Malawi’s Commercial City, Blantyre.
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The Patriot
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The Patriot

If the President is so bitter with MCP for “being a bunch of murderers” even though none of his family was murdered…..I wonder how the families of the July 21 Massacre victims, the families of Chasowa and Njaunju think about the DPP regime??

cipiliro
Guest
cipiliro

Good advice although seems has fallen into deaf ears. It it healthy for the head of state to harbor grudges and bitterness like that? Anyway to choose a president is in the hands of malawians not the head of state.

Kayira
Guest
Kayira

Those who forget their past are condemned to repeat it

AUBREN
Guest

Mr Kachaje your History should not be one sided. APM is crying for what the party did during its reign. If you can check the Jews still remembers the days of the Holocaust. On the other point, the parties which committed atrocities in the areas Kachaje mentioned were removed. We do not have the Nazi party and that showed forgiveness to the party? again a the people who killed the Jews were charged with crimes at international tribunals. Yet, here in Malawi nobody who committed such an activity was tried. In the case of South Africa, the Nationalist Party was… Read more »

Mwananyanian
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Mwananyanian

@AUBRIEN Well stated here. Indeed, it has been suggested, in the past, that in most countries MCP would (and should) have been abolished or even criminalized when democracy was introduced. And it’s proprietors taken to account in competent courts (in today’s environment, Kamuzu et al would be at the Hague facing the music): that failure will forever be a blotch on Malawians, and future generations will not judge us kindly on this matter. THAT WAS A BIG MISTAKE! Where is the accountability? And no wonder current MCPers, even those who are alive and were part of the “genocide”, have no… Read more »

AUBREN
Guest

Kachaje is missing a point on forgiveness, the president is not talking about killing someone here.

Sure
Guest
Sure

So why the president says as long as hes alive ? Thats bitterness .. as leader he was not to habour such hatred. More ove we have new MCP. Anthu amene mumayankhula zopusa kuku fufuzani ma banja anu sada zunzidweko olo pangono

MAPUYA MULUPALE
Guest
MAPUYA MULUPALE

ngati dpp ikutizuza pano makoponi kutipatsa koma feteleza osatipatsa .kudzaika mwala wa nseu mpaka pano nseu palibe. kuno ku lilongwe ku chibubu school tamanga tonkha .kwa kalumbu mseu watala kulibe mpaka kwa bisai .nde tivotere mbava ife kaya.

#DzukaniAmalawi
Guest
#DzukaniAmalawi

That’s liking drinking hoping that the other person dies; that’s what harbouring hatred do people. Hatred should never be in the psyche of a head of state….not at all. Its unhealthy for the president to carry such burdens. I can understand now why he is busy castigating and vilifying the opposition and his family (Callista Mutharika). Love conquers all and that’s what he preached at the just ended ceremony with the Ngonis. Practice what you preach if you’re to be believable.

Napoleone
Guest
Napoleone

Mr Kachanje, you have to know that someone can forgive, but cannot forget what the trauma they went through. We may portray ourselves as people who forgive because we believe in Forgiveness f those who transpasses against us, but everyday we have something that we remember. People grieve in different ways. All those that ent through the hard times of MCP era may not go on the same thought line as you. We still have issue of Chasowa, Njunju which is always on media, do we forget? Yes your uncle might be imprisoned and came out , but Mutharika’s father… Read more »

Cognitive Dissonace Theory
Guest
Cognitive Dissonace Theory

Who are these people who do not know the graves of their loved ones? Don’t exaggerate things.

Mwananyanian
Guest
Mwananyanian

@Cognitive …
Koma inu funso limeneli lanzeru eti?
Think again. Please.
Or go read or re-read the Malawi history during that dark era.

Eduardo
Guest
Eduardo

Thank you Napoleon for the master piece.

Martin
Guest
Martin

But all of you are contradicting yourselves because mcp was not an elephant trumping on everyone, but bad people in that party who gave it a bad name. Unfortunately those people are now in dpp together with the same president who is complaining, that means he forgot and forgave them. So is there any sense to hate the party but love the people who killed your father because they are killing someone’s father today on your behalf? I think the president is just stupid and he wants undeserving sympathy.

nachisale
Guest
nachisale

most of those people who were master minding killings in MCP are now is DPP. You talk of NTABA, DAUSI, MULUZI, HERNY MUSSSA and so on and so forth. Deal with them first.

wakudya
Guest
wakudya

powerful mr kachaje,,wish hd Malawi hd a leader who cn sit and think as u hv done,vengeance cant go with a leader,,its a shame to our country,,may the LORD help us to choose wisely in the fourth cmn elections

DAVIE C MAKAWA
Guest

graet piece mr kachaje

Ntengo wa Kesia
Guest
Ntengo wa Kesia

While the theme of forgiveness is thrust to the writer’s argument here, it should be pointed that it is democratic, in the broadest sense, to let every person deal with grief in the way they feel. And it should be emphasized there is no standard formula or Rx recipe; nor is there even an X+Y = Z. So we should let the President deal with his personal loss, during Kamuzu and MCP dictatorship in his own (personal) way, and within his own comfort zone; and as long he’s not criminalizing his feelings. As did Mr Kachaje’s uncle deal with his… Read more »

Gulukunyinda
Guest
Gulukunyinda

But he should not swear that as long he is alive MCP will not rule the country. He was voted by people and its the same people who will decide.

Cognitive Dissonace Theory
Guest
Cognitive Dissonace Theory

But the president is doing it publically and it is not even true that his father died because of MCP, Bingu told a different story, unless these two had different fathers.

Eduardo
Guest
Eduardo

Thank you Mtengo wa Keshia. You are a genius. Henry Kachaje is pro-MCP and he is always critical of the President.

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