Last Thursday we were so angry that we could have ripped apart a live elephant and eaten it raw. Like we always do in such moments of rage, we decided to seek the comfort of our dear brothers and sisters in rural areas. We drove away from Blantyre, the City of Mediocrity, the city without water, the city whose mayor is interested more in personal political image building than in providing critical services to the residents. Blantyre is also the official opulent blue-envelope-dishing home of President Professor Emeritus Dr Arthur Peter Mutharika who literally sleeps at Sanjika Hill and remotely looks down at his supporters, the people that sent him to Sanjika go without water for months.
Never in the 50 year history of this great federal republic have we had such silent, unreactive leadership at such critical times. Never. Ever?
Vice-President Saulos Kalus Chilima has not been seen in public, in newspapers and on TV where he appeared almost daily before we last saw his forlorn face at the funeral of the Michael King Cobra Sata in Zambia. Chilima used to make a lot of promises about reforms in our federal republican mentality, worth ethic and the size of the civil service. He argued that government needed to function like a business and the people should follow the results based logical framework (logframe).
Just where is Saulos Klaus Chilima? Does he still have a mouth or political reality has caught up with him and swallowed his untested political dream? Or the owners of the DPP have told him to slow tempo down?
So, we decided to go to Ntcheu to look for the Saulos Klaus Chilima of yester months to ask him a few questions. We planned to search for him at Nsipe. We planned to ask all the chiefs around the area before going to Bubuwa, Dete, Chokazinga, Kuthakonansi and Champiti. We vowed to search until we found him. For the first time, Abiti Joyce Befu, MG 66, decided to drive. And we were pleased.
“We need to drive to Mudi,” MG 66 suggested.
“What for?” I wondered.
“To look for the Vice-President, our Saulos Kalausi Chilima,” Abiti went on matter-of-factly.
“It’s Saulos Klaus, not Kalausi,” Native Authority Mandela corrected.
“You expect to find the Vice-President at Mudi dam?” Sheikh Jean Philippe asked, mockingly, adding, “How do you expect to find the Vice-President and the Second Lady there when the dam cannot even hold water?”
Native Authority Mandela and I laughed like Siamese twins.
“I meant Mudi Residence,” Abiti clarified.
“He can’t be there. Members of the Executive are running away from their official urban area homes. Ukitiukiti abandoned his official residence in Lilongwe and went into hiding. Claus Chilima does not go Mudi Residence anymore,” Sheikh Jean-Philippe said.
“Why does he not go there?” Native Authority Mandela.
“Robbers were courageous enough to test the waters. One pitch-dark night they scaled the walls of Mudi Residence to steal while in Lilongwe they drilled a hole into the perimeter fence of Ukitiukiti’s residence,” I said.
“So why did they relocate instead of just beefing up their security?” Native Authority Mandela asked.
“It’s an acknowledgement that the policing system has collapsed. In Mzuzu, you must have heard, robbers disarmed and beat up police officers on night patrol,” Sheikh Jean-Philippe said.
“Things fall apart…” Native Authority Mandela started.
“The centre cannot hold…” I finished.
“By the way, where is the leader of the Opposition? President Bingu wa Mutharika is credited with having done something in his first five years as president because of Baba,” MG 66 reminded.
“Baba?” Jean-Philippe wondered.
“Baba John Zenus Ungapake Tembo, as leader of the opposition, made Bingu wa Mutharika and his minority government sweat to convince Malawians that they were performers. Remember this “Section 65 number 1; Budget No. 2″. This sent shivers into Mutharika. This time around we expected the Reverend Dr Lazarus Chakwera to put pressure on the presidency and breathe some life into this lifeless government to deliver basic services such as water and security,” MG 66 said.
“Let sleeping Lazarus Chakwera lie. He is busy addressing rallies in Ntchisi, Dowa, Kasungu, where people already believe in his leadership skills. He should come down to Blantyre, Chikwawa, Thyolo, and Mulanje to show Malawians he is worth to be a national leader,” Native Authority Mandela concluded.