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How to lose elections

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The DPP administration is in a panic and nervous mode.

It knows that the past four years have not been rosy for Malawians and the party is doing all it can so that it should not upset them.

That is why the Water Boards can secretly raise water tariffs and as soon as The Daily Times reports it, it will be reversed with a promise that the consumers will be reimbursed.

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The Ministry of Information and Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority (Macra) can decide to obey the law by ordering all of us to register our mobiles sim cards but as soon as the DPP administration sees citizens grumbling on Facebook about how tired they are with lining up again and again, it will suspend it until such a time it deems Malawians to have bought into it.

The Blantyre City Council can decide to do the right thing by putting up a 60-day notice that illegal settlers will be evicted but as soon government gets wind of it, it will order the council to shelve such plans for fear of upsetting Blantyre residents in the run up to next year’s elections.

Such is the nervousness and desperation of the administration that I can imagine that, if it was in its power, it would suspend the Penal Code for fear of losing the votes of all criminals during next year’s elections.

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But the DPP administration should not be this nervous, which to me is the surest way of losing an election after losing focus on the real things that matter to Malawians.

And the things that matter to Malawians are many. Malawians do not want to live in a country that is called perpetually corrupt. Malawians want to live in a country that is fair and just, with equal opportunities for all without regard to tribe, region, race, gender, religion, political affiliation, the list is endless.

Malawians do not want to live in a country of poverty where the majority cannot afford basic needs. They want to live in a country with provisions such as water and electricity.

If the DPP wants to win next year’s election, the surest way of losing it is subjecting Malawians to blackouts for four years now.

If DPP wants to win elections, the surest way of tumbling down is to engage in crookedness of trying to share up K4 billion of taxpayers’ money to reward political loyalty, thereby prompting calls for demonstration by CSOs as they have announced this week.

Against advice from experts who said no country has ever lived on electricity from generators as it is unsustainable, it was only in January when President Peter Mutharika commissioned them at a ceremony in Blantyre with a promise that they signalled the end of blackouts.

What was not said during the function is the fact that consumers have been made to folk out a good 25 percent increase in the bills they pay to Escom just to fund the fuel guzzling generators.

Malawians are a meek lot and the country did not see any picketing or mass demonstrations over the unprecedented increase in tariffs but quietly groaned under the heavy yoke of bills that come their way every month.

This was in the hope and premise that all will be well and they will go to bed with power in their homes and will wake up in the same manner.

But Alas! This is not the case and the blackouts are back with the vengeance of the capricious gods.

Now, this is the surest way of losing elections that the DPP should truly be afraid of. What is being projected to the voters is an administration that is clueless at managing the welfare of Malawians.

Asked on what the matter is, Egenco shamelessly says it is rain that is not bringing enough water volumes in the Southern Region.

When probed further where the hell the generators are, which were meant to ameliorate the situation, Egenco is incoherent and clueless.

But how long shall we use rain or lack of it as an excuse for not generating enough power for everyone?

Ministry of Finance Goodall Gondwe was very emphatic in his mid-term review of the budget that the financial blue print is off track because Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) had under-collected from the private sector whose productivity was low in the first half of the year and blackouts were the main cause.

Gondwe gave himself false hopes that in the second half, MRA would improve collection as there would be energy for companies to operate full time to create wealth for the taxman to levy his dues from.

This, of course, was just good old Goodall dreaming in colour and he has the incompetence of his own government to blame for failure to sort out the energy crisis once and for all.

This is a surest way to lose an election which the opposition could have, by now, capitalized on.

Put into the mix the K4 billion scandal, then perhaps the DPP has really some worrying to do.

Where is the energy plan for MCP, PP or UDF that can give hope to Malawians that if they were voted into power, blackouts would be a thing of past?

It is clear DPP wants to lose next year’s elections on account of failure to solve the energy crisis.

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