August 28, 2012
I suppose I should have no qualms about DPP first vice-president Goodall Gondweâ€™s decision to live in the dream world by expressing optimism that the party would get back into government in 2014 based on its so-called attendance figures at its meetings as a basis.
Well, this is dubious because if attendance were a measure of which party would go into government, then John Tembo would be president today because the crowd that attended the last campaign rally he jointly addressed at Masintha Ground in Lilongwe with former president Bakili Muluzi in 2009, was exceedingly massive, something the MCP leader had never seen in his political career spanning decades.
The crowd was so overwhelming that Tembo and Muluzi, two consummate politicians by all standards, were for the first not so coherent. The battle had been won and what remained was to savour the victory on polling day, but they were shocked that Tembo even lost what he considered his stronghold, the Central Region.
The point I am trying toÂ make is that Gondweâ€™s assertion that crowds at DPP functions are a sign that Malawians are warming up to the party that made their lives hell on earth is misleading and has no scientific basis.
I can cut some slack for Gondwe and allow him to savour his dreams as DPP fights for two seats in Mzimba. He has a right to it.
But one thing I will not allow Gondwe to get away with is when, in his opportunistic exuberance to paint a rosy picture for DPP, he lies that the party is extremely strong and a lot of people are looking up to it.
He goes on to say DPP policies that made the country strong will not only continue but will be more vigorously followed by the party if elected again in 2014. He then says with a straight face that DPP has a vision of where the country should be going.
Now, this is false and blue murder and Gondwe should not be allowed to go scot-free because he is treading where angels fear.
He should be reminded that until fate flipped the script on Malawi in April and forced us all to face the consequences of political myopia after the passing of president Bingu wa Mutharika, DPP was the party in power.
It was then that the instruments of State and power were finally passed on to Joyce Banda despite DPPâ€™s sinister and highly treasonable machinations to rape our Constitution in daylight by trying to stop her from ascending to the high office of President.
If DPP has â€œthe vision of where the country should be going,â€ as Gondwe was shamefully telling Malawians in Mzimba, it had an amazing chance to do just that when it was in power but, as we all know, it failed miserably.
Instead it made a habit of making Malawians experience hell right here on mother earth. The country was going backwards and we all clearly saw that.
There was fuel crisis which took the over-incompetent DPP government four long years to deal with it. Is this vision?
The DPP administration dilly-dallied to devalue our currency and help bring forex back to our banks and our bureaux, the effects of which are still being felt today. Is that vision?
DPP churned out bad laws some of which have since been repealed. Is that what Gondwe means when he says this party knows where it wants to take Malawi to? Back to oppression? Is that what Gondwe means?
With DPP, the country was losing neighbours and development partners on a daily basis as the late Mutharika constantly vilified and hurled insults at them. Was this DPPâ€™s vision which Gondwe wants continued?
What about police utter brutality which saw 20 hapless Malawians gunned down in the streets on July 20 last year for protesting bad governance, economic mismanagement and dictatorial rule, among others? Does DPP want to continue its vision of killing people if voted into power in 2014?
And finally, does DPP consider it its vision worthy continuing when, during its rule some of us felt less Malawian simply because we opted not to agree with its policies and we were called chickens and tiankhwezule? What about the fact that this was used as a pretext to look for enemies behind every anthill, or worse, like Sancho Panza in Cervantesâ€™ classic tale, Don Quixote, for windmills to fight?
All this was spiced up with imaginary coups and all kinds of plots being hatched to bring about regime change. This way, DPP was able to deploy heavily armed police officers wearing menacingly ugly camouflage fatigues patrolling every corner of our cities looking for enemies who only existed in the imagination of those who ran government.
Those of us who chose to speak out about bad governance and the ugly face of dictatorship lived in constant fear of arrest and harassment from DPP hoodlums and spies. We could not have a quiet drink at our favourite watering holes after a hard dayâ€™s work without getting this sense that Big Brother was watching you and listening to your every word.
Is this the vision that Gondwe is talking about?
I have to say to Gondwe: Malawians are not stupid. They want to continue the way they have felt since the unfortunate death of Mutharika for the rest of their lives: Free human beings sleeping in peace and not afraid that they may be arrested for speaking against tyranny.
My final advice is that DPP should just be licking its wounds as it rots in political purgatory and resist from inflicting further damage on the national psyche with senseless statements like the one Gondwe made in Mzimba.
The good thing is we know how DPP can behave while in power. Cheating Malawians wonâ€™t work again.