We on the streets are not surprised that Malawi has dropped on the ladder on governance in Africa to position 18 out of 54 African states as measured by the Mo Ibrahim Index.
The Mo Ibrahim Index of African Governance (IIAG)‚ is a monitor of overall governance performance in African countries. Its report was made public on Monday and it shows that overall, Malawi showed ‘warning signs’ in all aspects of governance.
“Malawi registers an overall governance stagnation over the decade at an annual average trend of 0.00, but had declined in the last five years with an annual average trend of 0.23,” reads the report released in Dakar, Senegal.
It was under the leadership of Joyce Banda in 2013 when Malawi achieved its highest category score when it was ranked 16th out of 52 nations and our worst performance was in 2009 during the Bingu wa Mutharika’s rule when it was on position 23 out of 53 nations.
Since power returned to the Mutharikas, the country’s governance has been poor and it will even be worse sooner than later.
Yes, governance in Malawi, under the watch of Bingu’s brother, Peter Mutharika, is on a downward trajectory yet our colleagues are improving their democratic spaces. Take a look at Seychelles‚ Namibia and Tunisia, all these countries occupy the top tier positions in terms of overall performance this year.
While South Africa—of course with Jacob Zumba in the driving seat— remains in the top 10 most deteriorated countries over the past decade along with Libya‚ Madagascar‚ Mali and the Central African Republic.
But how is the index measured, you may ask? IIAG collates 17 years’ data for 54 African states‚ using criteria such as security‚ human rights‚ economic stability‚ just laws‚ free elections‚ corruption‚ infrastructure‚ poverty‚ health and education. And before you cadets dismiss it, the index is deemed to be the most comprehensive collection of data on African governance.
We on the streets believe such reports give us Malawians the more reason we should demand better from our leaders. As the index shows, this country is heading for disaster.
There is so much poor governance in all aspects of our lives. The police is in such a mess, parastatals are crumbling, government departments such the Department of Road Traffic and Safety Services (DRTSS) and Immigration need a quick fix before they totally fail, while public hospitals are slowly turning into death zones. Nepotism is so entrenched that our search for an equal society seems perhaps futile.
But as we all know society having too much inequality is doomed. That is why, unless we Malawians radically reduce the horrendous inequalities afflicting us, our country is heading to certain doom.
But what needs to be done?
To alleviate poverty, which is a direct result of inequality, we on the streets say, Malawi must have sustained economic growth. Economic growth is important with regard to alleviating poverty; however, poverty is primarily a problem of distribution.
If this DPP administration can make distribution fair and just, it will in fact contribute to economic growth and lowering poverty rates. But as we all know, DPP is greedy, so the solution is to demand for better leaders who will have the courage to redistribute what we have, to achieve both economic growth and poverty reduction.
Word on the street is that perhaps it’s time for government to establish at least a legally guaranteed and protected minimum standard of living for all Malawians. Perhaps, it’s time we should use the state to govern and regulate greed, because, if it is not governed and regulated, greed—as DPP has shown us—destroys society.
Perhaps it’s also time we should get rid of poor leaders, once and for all.
Kicks of a dying horse
News that APM meet People’s Party members of Parliament (MPs) on Sunday clearly shows that the President is too desperate to retan power in 2019 that he is ready to drink his own vomit.
The meeting also signifies the great desperation that is in DPP to increase power through hook or crook. Malawians know how for the past three years of failure, this government has blamed PP for the many problems facing the country.
For APM and his DPP to ask PP to dinner shows how ill-intentioned the ruling party is. APM is hell-bent on using and dumping PP.
It’s sad that JB is watching in the comfort of her home in South Africa as DPP violates her party.