When President Bingu wa Mutharika was all comfy in Lusaka, Zambia working as an international civil servant, the Public Affairs Committee (PAC) was at the forefront here trying to wrestle this country from the vice-grip of the dictatorship of the Malawi Congress Party.
Late Alhaji Shaibu Itimu and Reverend Emmanuel Chimkwita Phiri were permanent fixtures on the front pages of our newspapers. We had plenty of newspapers then and the civilized Hastings Kamuzu Banda, who had been president for 31 years, never stopped anybody at Capital Hill
from reading these papers, by the way. Anyway, the papers carried stories of PAC’s efforts in demolishing the dictatorship once and for all.
Now PAC is back to the fore to fight a new kind of battle. For Mutharika, who ascended to the seat of power wearing the coat of a democrat, has now become a dictator of the worst type. He has become insensitive to the suffering of Malawians, and he does not care about Malawi at all. All he cares about is the accumulation of a lot of wealth, building private palaces in his village, and spending government funds to help his brother succeed him. We have sold this country to the Mutharikas for their self-enrichment.
We cannot continue to suffer like this. Dziko ndi lathu ili (This country is ours). We need to rescue it from the hands of those that do not wish Malawi well. Being president is not just about stuffing a lot
of money in your pockets and paying your wife a salary for doing nothing when all around you there is no medicine in hospitals, fuel shortages are never ending, airlines are discontinuing flights to
Malawi due to incapability to remit forex to the airline headquarters, etc. Clearly Mutharika has failed to rule this country.
Which is why when PAC says he has to resign, I agree. We cannot continue like this. As John Kapito said, this economy is on ‘autopilot’. The guys we mandated to run it are busy partying, flying to Addis Ababa to sleep in a hotel that charges $9,000 per night, holidaying in Hong Kong for God-knows-how-many-dollars, and building private palaces and dams.
We still have two years before we can kick them out through the ballot, whether or not the younger Mutharika will make good his threat to resort to witchcraft to prevent us from voting against him. But two years sometimes sounds like twenty years, given the suffering we are going through every day.
The President will flash the coup card after reading this article I know. He does not know we long stopped taking his coup allegations seriously. Going by the four coup unsubstantiated allegations since he took office, Roy Commsy would have been President in his place today, which is how laughable his allegations sometimes are. They are still struggling to bring to an end the Cassim Chilumpha case that started in January 2007. Reminds me of William Shakespeare’s Macbeth: ‘To be
thus is nothing but to be safely thus,’ – words he said when he was seeing enemies real or imagined around him.