April 7 2022
It is apparent that the government of President Lazarus Chakwera is downspiralling at a supersonic speed. While Malawians are suffering under the weight of high cost of living, the Tonse Alliance administration sinks to the base by making arrests of journalists in the line of duty.
The arrest of journalist director of the Platform for Investigative Journalism (PIJ) Gregory Gondwe is the new low the Chakwera government can sink. The arrest is proof enough that their claim to encourage freedom of the press is just paying lip-service.
What is even worrying is that the government confiscated computers and phones at PIJ. Much as the gadgets were returned, no one knows what happened to the gadgets when they were in government’s hands. This is not a mere attack only on Gondwe and PIJ’s privacy but also an attack on the Fourth arm of the government, the media.
Gagging and muzzling the press is a very archaic way to run things.
One can feel for the people of Neno. Who will save the people of Neno where the road is concerned?
The other day, Vice-President Saulos Chilima was supposed to meet stakeholders from Neno as part of the reforms the Tonse Alliance administration is implementing. Due to the bad road, the stakeholders had to go to Mwanza for the meeting with the Veep.
That is cause for worry. This road has been in very bad shape for ages such that it is a paracetamol-coaxing endeavour to travel on it.
What is strange is that during the campaign the road was used as bait. Chilima missed an opportunity to travel down this road to appreciate the bad state in which it is.
It is a fact that Neno is one of the districts in the country that is highly productive. Much of the Irish potatoes in the commercial capital Blantyre comes from Neno. It is, indeed, also a fact that Neno was once a thriving wheat producing district, but how do farmers transport their produce to the market?
The residents, at one point, presented to Parliament a petition over the road. Shall we wait for the Neno residents to put on sackcloth as their Chitipa counterparts did?
While we are at it, Nation on Sunday reported that Chilima had included a bloated 41-member delegation to the United States of America. At the time, the Office of the Vice-President never responded to questions on the matter. When the story came out, the office went to town to say only 15 people from the office were accompanying the Veep.
It is clear that we still have a long way to go in terms of governance. The administration is still hanging on to most of the things Malawians wanted to change when they voted against the Democratic Progressive Party government.
As it is, the future is not even promising, not only for the administration, but also the way theft, fraud and corruption are becoming institutionalised. The vices are becoming a cultural norm in the Malawi society.
What is most disheartening is the fact that there is no hope even in the youth that things will change soon.
If you think this is just a puff of hot air, look at the ages of the people arrested for heinous crimes. Just off the head, the four suspects of siphoning millions from the Chingeni tollgate and the lad who allegedly broke into a police station and stole a gun and ammunition have not yet attained 30 years. Shame.
We have conspired to compete in doing the wrong things for our society.