My forgotten valentine—Mulanje West MP Patricia Kaliati— otherwise known as ‘Akweni’, never ceases to thrill my world and probably that’s why she will always have a special place in my heart (I hope my anjira bwana Kaliati won’t get mad with me).
A few days ago, I recalled how the charismatic Nkando lady—as the then government spokesperson— played down criticism that was levelled against the late president Bingu wa Mutharika to buy a state-of-the-art Mercedes Benz Maybach at a time the country was battling a severe economic squeeze.
Akweni’s reaction in her deep Lhomwe accent was as interesting as they will ever come: “Iye ndi pulezidenti wa dziko ndiye mukafuna azikwera bulu?”—now this was the ‘Iron Lady’ at her best.
And then there was this other time during a public function, when she did not give a damn and proclaimed: “Azimayi nthawi zina azibambowa timatowaputa dala tokha, nanga zoona munthu ukugona ndi mamunako utavala andiloko [underwear]?
There was even a time when she joked that she would take me along banks of Thuchila River so that we could have a picnic and then scrub each other’s back, saying “Tikanyulane kunsana my dear!” She has always left me with a host of memories.
Now at a time when I thought she was playing a low profile and preoccupied with selling mapeyala and zinanazi at Nkando Trading Centre, my valentine came out of her shell and surprised me by buying over 10 Big Bullets and Mighty Wanderers replica jerseys at Parliament last week.
I am sure the intention is to distribute the jerseys to fans of the two teams in her constituency, but what I was delighted with was her gesture to assist towards the cause.
I hope my valentine’s move will give other MPs food for thought to emulate her gesture. In an ideal situation, this move could have been initiated by MPs who have been associated with sports such as John Zingale, Kezzie Musukwa, Yusuf Matumula and Jerome Waluza, not only towards football, but other sporting disciplines as well.
You indeed deserve a scrub on the back, my darling Pat and more importantly a long kiss (khisi in Lhomwe) kuti mtswaaaa!!!!
Glory be to God! Uloliwe.. uloliwe wayidudula hi..nang’esiza! [the train is pushing!]