(Judge Mbadwa is hearing a case in which defectors a group of defectors are asking the court to recognise the role they play in Nyasaland’s active politics)
Judge Mbadwa: Mr Goal Changer, why should this court listen to you after you changed colour again to blue?
Goal Changer: My Lord, on behalf of progressive people as announced recently, we decided to join the ruling party to help in fostering development of the country. But My Lord, people have been calling us names ranging from gold diggers to political prostitutes.
Others are saying we are opportunists. Our names have been dragged through mud by jealous people, especially from the opposition and the media. They are saying we are defectors without any iota of integrity, but are we? Most of them think we have literally become chameleons at the rate at which we have changed party colours.
My Lord such statements are slanderous or defamatory. With colleagues such as Pitani Kutsatira enacting his customary obeisance for Mapuya as a regional curtsy in-chief, having done so for Amayi, and Baba before, ours is not yet a case of chickens coming home to roost but to develop Nyasaland and ourselves.
Well, different colours have to be embraced. I was once yellow during the reign of Chairman BM and I became blue before I turned orange under Amayi.
You saw how I had outlived my welcome in Amayi’s party, when I was caught openly courting the blue league of People’s Demagogic Party (PDP). I might be a certified chameleon, but I have just returned to where I belong, PDP.
PDP leadership has noted that it needs the likes of Felie Jambo, JB, Uncle Kain, Done Paul Yea, Pasta Gwinya and others as the country heads to the polls. We are talking about strategists here, My Lord.
Above all, it is not a crime to earn a steady income in the course of helping Mapuya realise projects whose foundation stones have just been planted in each and every village.
People who have questioned our noble act of defecting to the ruling party to serve government of the day need to be committed to prison. My Lord, this court should also interpret whether it is a crime under penal statutes to defect to the ruling party? They should not ask us why people don’t defect to the opposition en masse.
I can argue that no one even in the party we have joined can stand on a high moral ground to say that we are defectors because we are in principle joining a party of defectors. We have just come home! For your information, the ruling party is a culmination of the defection process of the highest order. It was born after its founder defected from the yellow party of chairman BM. Should we say those who followed the first leader of PDP from the yellow party are gold diggers?
We want this court to stop people describing us as toxic assets because parties that keep us crumble. No! no! no! We have all been in opposition at one time and in ruling party at the other. Therefore, the question of who is responsible for the downward spiral of the party cannot be attributed to the presence of two or three defectors. I rest my case.
Mbadwa: This court cannot commit to prison people for describing you defectors as opportunists or gold diggers because we might end up jailing everybody. This court encourages freedom of expression as a constitutional right and people are entitled to their opinions. If you have specific examples of people who have called you names, then bring your specific matter forward. After listening to your submission, this court has, however, decided to change the meaning of a defector to represent any member of a ruling party, or anyone who joins the ruling party to foster development (personal or State one) while a traitor is anyone who fails to join the ruling party or remains in opposition or works for the independent media.n