09 July 2020
So, there is a new Cabinet. So, there is a new government. So, Lazarus Chakwera made that step to show he is the executive head of our Republic. He did indicate that time was rife to get to the realities of life: That it is not necessarily about handclapping that will get us moving as a nation.
In Martin Luther King Jnr tones, sandwiched with Abraham Lincoln intonations, Chakwera told us one basic thing. That basic thing was that he was only nine when this country was attaining independence. Basically, he told all of us that he is the last of a generation that should be retired by now.
Well and good.
In his word, the rubble must be cleared in all forms. The question now is: How do we clear the rubble in all the areas that he mentioned? The first thing that he did indicate is to get into place a new generation of leaders. It is a question of who is really that youthful voice. It matters, for us, that while we are clearing that rubble, the real old and tired guard must rest in peace.
Chakwera did indicate that he will be meeting Leader of Opposition in Parliament Kondwani Nankhumwa over time. How the aficionado in the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) will allow that remains to be seen. Nankhumwa commands respect from both sides of the House and certainly, his meeting with the Chakwera-Chilima leadership will benefit all of us. By the way, isn’t he the one who told the then President Peter Mutharika that if things don’t go right, retirement in peace is necessary?
To meet or not to meet between the ruling and opposing leaders is well and good. As long as it is for the Malawian out there, a Cabinet that is reminiscent of the representation of a national cake is most important.
But then, can that Cabinet be brought to reality? The very spirit that may have got Chakwera to think of a 40 percent women representation Cabinet was good, but there are other forces that tie him not to functionalise the servant leadership he wants to activate.
The thing is simple and easy. The new government has not so simple a task. They just have to deliver, on taxes and policies they promised.
It is a government we cannot smile at to shift goals to the next election.
It is a matter of little consequence to be in opposition for 26 of our 56 years as an independent nation and repeat the things that have kept us back to be pitted the poorest of the poor on earth. It is no matter that as an opposition party, the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) Chakwera has led since 2013 has, finally, goes into power and to repeat the same mistakes that have kept us back.
It was a campaign song from Chakwera and folks that this nation should not be run as a personal fiefdom. It was a rallying call that the Republic is not a family affair. And now, here we are, a Cabinet list has a man and his wife, Sidik and Abida making it tops. Then, you have someone and his sister, Ken Kandodo and Khumbize Chiponda, also getting the top jobs. That is the stinging reality that campaign songs become.
So, we get back to where we started.
While we are at it, it is in agreement that the born free generation should be at the helm. Time is ripe the same names we heard over and over again should be sent to the political cupboard.
We are now spared of hearing that Nicholas Dausi is back in the fold as minister of whatever. We now rest in peace, knowing that Henry Mussa, Francis Mphepo and Heatherwick Ntaba are nowhere near the running of the affairs of the Republic.