Zwexadaboz: ‘Many a mickle makes a muckle!’

“Whom then, do I call educated? First, those who control circumstances instead of being mastered by them, those who meet all occasion manfully and act in accordance with intelligent thinking, those who are honourable in all dealings, who treat good-naturedly persons and things that are disagreeable; and furthermore those who hold their pleasures under control AND are not overcome by misfortune; finally those who are not spoiled by success.” – SOCRATES

 In this modern age unseemly life and untoward era, nothing in nature is truer and more realistic because many a mickle makes a muckle or in other words many a little makes a mickle. This is to say that too many little mistakes can be dangerous. In fact, too many little mistakes, be it deliberate or accidental, can be very dangerous and toxic.Zwex

Me thinks that Malawi as a country and Malawians and as its occupants, we are living dangerously on the cliff-hangers – and we do not want to learn from our mistakes ­– it looks like nobody gives a monkey that many a little makes a mickle.

When I thought about it, for a moment, my mind went off and my head had absolutely gone off at a complete tangent, trying to work out, however, many puckles there must be in the firm. Then, the old ‘saws’ about thrift and frugality in line with corruption and embezzlement of public funds came to mind with a stinging prickling: ‘Many a mickle makes a muckle’ and that ‘There’s many a slip between cup and lip.’ Could it be a case of many citizens making a puckle in a pickled country?

I’ve often heard so many times that many things can come between mouth and morsel and in the same vein; I strongly believe that when it comes to corruption, many things between the cup of dishonesty and the edge of the lip of greed.

Why do people steal especially those in high offices of authority? Why it that these days it is the most is educated who are thieves – both petty and serious criminals? Why has education become part of the modern-day organised crime?

Sometimes, however, the simplest of questions can prove the most difficult to answer. Why, for example, is an educated thief very dangerous? We don’t have to scratch too deeply to realise that ‘educated thieves’ are the enemies of progress and that it is a concept laden with emotion and that trying to understand what makes these educated thieves very dangerous to mankind is a matter of intense debate, both within our society and within our country.

The educated occupy a unique place in our complicated social systems and we trust them to the bone. The country needs the educated lot to move forward but in Malawi and of course many African countries and beyond, if truth be told, it is the most educated people who are the worst thieves. Our skyrocketing level of corruption is perpetrated not by the uneducated, uncivilized compatriots, it is those smart, witty gentlemen and ladies of letters who are causing havoc.

Uneducated brutes will only be petty thieves and will only rob people for survival while on the other hand, wicked as it may sound, the educated criminals who in most cases commit organised crimes are toxic criminals who do not steal to survive but make sure that the whole country is poor as they become stinking rich and bask in the glory of life and cut above the rest.

Both criminals in the infamous American scandal, Watergate, the villainous Italian Bank Job, The Field-York scandal and recently the Malawian Cashgate, multi-billion public funds theft tittle-tattle are educated and organised thieves and in my opinion both the Chiradzulo serial murders and the now disturbing and mind-boggling senseless killing of people with albinism   is the work of some educated fellows who are using the ‘uneducated and illogical bastards’ to commit the atrocious ritual murders on their behalf.

Thieves are born and not made. Thieves will be thieves and education will never help bandits be better and well-cultured. Education will only mould thieves into smart criminals and jackasses.  I think it is time we start vetting the people we want to educate as a country – tikungophunzitsa mbava – how that can be done, I have no idea and it’s beyond my comprehension.

The world is today in great danger because of the educated. Mbuli siziyambitsa nkhondo, mbuli siziba ma billion kapena mankhwala m’zipatala, mbuli sizitha kuomba mfuti….

It is the educated criminals who are stealing money meant for the poor, it is the educated people who are stealing medicines from our hospitals and it is without an iota of reasonable doubt that it is the educated and the educated alone who are responsible for all our miseries.

The educated, I believe, in the vulgar, superficial way of my understanding the word, are the devils’ Christians. But to throw aside these polished and too current counterfeits for something as valuable as humanity and sterling.

‘Civility is free’

It is my dream that the educated should be gentle in everything, at least in everything that depends on them. They ought, therefore to be mild, judicious, calm, even temperate – not hasty in judgement, not exorbitant in ambition, not overbearing, not proud, not rapacious and not oppressive; for these things are contrary to the concept of being educated and civility.

Not all the educated are wise.

Greek great philosopher, Socrates summed it up with wisdom when he aptly said: “Whom then, do I call educated? First, those who control circumstances instead of being mastered by them, those who meet all occasion manfully and act in accordance with intelligent thinking, those who are honourable in all dealings, who treat good-naturedly persons and things that are disagreeable; and furthermore those who hold their pleasures under control AND are not overcome by misfortune; finally those who are not spoiled by success.”

Civility costs nothing, my grandfather once told me and, he also often warned me that hasty climbers have sudden falls. I didn’t get what he meant by then but now it makes sense.

I believe that every man and woman needs to have two educations – that which is given to him, and the other, which he gives himself. Of the two kinds, the latter is by far the most valuable. Indeed, all that is worthy, in a human being, they must work out and conquer for themselves; they must work out to conquer for themselves. It is that; that I now believe, which constitutes our real and best nourishment. What we are merely taught seldom nourishes the mind that we teach ourselves.

It is every parent’s dream for their children to be educated and become noble citizens and not criminals. These days, it’s poignant to note that the educated steal more than the illiterate. In fact, some people are even buying higher qualifications like Ph.D.’s. Search me! Dr this, Dr that – featuring a bogus Ph.D  which is conferred without a thesis.

Growing up, I have always regarded women in the highest esteem and I have for eternity considered the women folk to be in the clear and very innocent of course I have heard so many times that ‘Mfiti yayikazi imakhala youma moyo’ but I just took it as mere village rhetoric and that it was all ‘porkies’ if not utter nonsense.

But the latest trends have me think otherwise. One beautiful educated woman, a top-ranking government official, Mrs. Theresa Senzani is currently under lock and key doing the time for pilfering and thieving government money. Then, there are those Savala ladies, Esnath Ndovi and several others who have also been accused of having ‘long hands.’

What is happening with our beloved women?

‘Caesar’s wife’ 

Recently, the news has been awash with the arrest of the country’s former top female cop and deputy High Commissioner to the African Union, Doreen Mwalwanda – Kapanga who is being accused of embezzling huge sums of government money.

I am not here to discuss whether she is innocent or guilty but I know for a fact that being a top female most educated cop, the first female University of Malawi graduate to join police, rose through the file and ranks  and became the Deputy Police chief I and the readers just wanna know the truth, nothing more. ‘Pati biii pali minga!’

Madam Doreen Mwalawanda was also once arrested and interdicted for being suspected to have stolen government money from the police – it must be known that I am not judging her here, I am only stating the obvious facts – and I think, Doreen Mwalwanda – Kapanga like Caesars wife must be above suspicion.

I am only trying to find out the truth and not necessarily commenting on the matter that is before the courts and I want to know why a suspected criminal was appointed High Commissioner? Who appointed her? On what basis? Mustn’t people’s records, criminal or otherwise be a guiding principle when appointing people to offices of highest authority?

In a nutshell, the story goes; Julius replied (thus according to Plutarch) when asked why he had divorced his wife, Pompeia. He considered his honour and position compromised since she was indirectly associated with Publius Clodius’ trial for sacrilege.

It is, to say the least, a very great misfortune that persons employed in the most important departments should have separate interests from the public whom they profess to serve.

Caesar’s wife ought not to be suspected, she ought to be above suspicion. Caesar himself ought to be so too. Diplomats and senior government officials are like candidates for the church and Caesar’s wife. Not only they; but all their relations, must be above suspicion. Doreen Mwalwanda – Kapanga as the historic first most educated woman join the Malawi Police must not be suspected, not once and for the second time, she is the country’s role model, a pacesetter and a trendsetter and she ought to be above suspicion.

Public servants i.e. doctors, lawyers and judges, nurses et al, ought to bear in mind the maxim of one Caligula’s more lucid predecessors; Caesar’s wife must be above suspicion; and so should Caesars. Doreen ought to be above suspicion and so is the person who appointed her as deputy special envoy to the AU amid her soiled curriculum Vitae from her law enforcing job.

Whether she is innocent or guilty before the law, we at the ‘Court of Public Opinion’ believe that  Doreen Mwalwanda – Kapanga has no excuse to be accused of embezzling public funds, not once but twice. She ought to be above suspicion, like Caesars wife. Like Caesar’s wife knows that a lot is at stake and making any slight mistakes couldn’t only be embarrassing.

Oh by the way, where are the radical women rights’ activists? Can’t they say something to condemn their own; at the rate that we are going, our prisons will soon be filled to the brim by our own mothers, sisters, aunties and nieces. Azimayi akuba masiku ano!

 It doesn’t matter if a cat is black or white, as long as it catches mice.

Until next week, So long, Zwex!

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Sol Invictus
Sol Invictus
6 years ago

What a cruel game you are playing with us, Mr Makossa. First you shovel together a great pile of dung, mickles, pickles, muckles, puckles, and other offal of the Scottish literary pig-pen. Then you hide your pearls of wisdom within this steaming, reaking dung-heap, leaving us spadeless and gloveless to separate the treasure from the turds.

6 years ago

If Richard Kunje was alive he could have sued Peter Makossa for plagiarizing Zwexadaboz!

The Analyst
The Analyst
6 years ago

O……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..O Peter, I know you are a great writer (this piece, even the previous one; can testify); but a thing or two . . . . . . Your writing is just a lot, just as the previous one. In this article, for instance; are three main issues; related but different . . . 1. How more dangerous is an educated thief, than otherwise 2. How, after mismanaging funds in one govt dept, a thiief is merely transfered to another dept, as a punishment. 3. The mushrooming of women thieves. . . . Looking at these topics, there is a… Read more »

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