Proof of the pudding


This week, Africa buried one of its great sons in John Pombe Magufuli. Prior to his burial on Thursday in his home country Tanzania, the late president received a hearty send-off that attracted a total of 10 African leaders. Listening to the various guests paying tribute to Magufuli for his transformative leadership, I was forced to reminisce about an entry which I wrote on this very page nine months ago, ahead of the June 23 2020 presidential poll.

In that article, titled ‘We need a game changer like galagaza’ I intimated that if Malawi was to get back up on its feet and be a giant to reckon with across the African continent, regain the reputation as the food basket of the Sadc region, then we must choose somebody who is a workhorse, does not tolerate corruption tendencies, would take a hard line in checking nepotism and tribalism, would not reward non deserving and under-qualified cronies with posts in public institutions.

Well, thus far, it appears Malawians made the right call on that beautiful day, June 23 last year as President Lazarus Chakwera seems to tick all the boxes I have outlined above.


But they do say the proof of the pudding is in the eating and the Malawi nation eagerly anticipates such a time when we shall start counting, one by one, developmental projects that have been initiated by the Chakwera-led administration; new roads, buildings and the promise to create 1 million jobs for the youth. I am told that even at the Directorate of Road Traffic and Safety Services (DRTSS), some drivers of heavy goods vehicles are having to spend weeks without getting their licences renewed; all because the systems are awaiting direction on the promise that was made to scrap the costs associated with the renewal and upgrading processes.

We cannot continue to hide under the veil of the Covid-19 pandemic; yes it has destabilised a lot of things but still certain things have to kick into motion, just as was the case with the Affordable Inputs Programme (AIP), which has thus far, won the hearts of many in the way government has handled the programme.

My bad! I deviated a bit; I was talking about the befitting farewell that Africa accorded to Magufuli. One after the other, all the African leaders that were around, hailed the fallen leader as a rare breed. But it was the oratory skills of our very own President Chakwera that stole the show. This is part of his moving eulogy:


When they said laziness and sloth in public service cannot be cured, they did not see Magufuli coming.

When they said the cartels of corruption strangling Africa’s governments cannot be defeated, they did not see Magufuli coming.

When they said African States cannot become middle income economies within a single presidential term, they did not see Magufuli coming.

When they said infrastructural projects in Africa cannot be completed on time and on budget, they did not see Magufuli coming.

When they said the only way to pursue our development is to follow failed prescriptions of foreign financial institutions that have left Africa more impoverished and in debt than they found it, they did not see Magufuli coming.

Very colourful words and we must certainly hand it to our President for flying the Malawi flag high at the occasion. But now, Magufuli is gone, having done his part to uplift the economic development of his country and the onus is on his successor and indeed all African leaders on the continent, including our own President Chakwera, to replicate what Magufuli achieved.

As a leader, Chakwera must be angry enough to stimulate notable developmental changes in the country, which, in no doubt, would be a timely gesture that will placate smiles on the beautiful faces of Malawians amid all the dark and gloom we have experienced due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

I have repeatedly said that words should always be matched with action and most definitely, Malawians have huge expectations from the Tonse Alliance – led administration.

That leaky fuel barrel

As has become the tradition, we were all anxiously awaiting the Ombudsman to unpack her report, as promised, last Friday on the happenings at the Malawi Regulatory Authority (Mera) under the previous regime.

I will not bore you with the details but what I want to emphasise is that the findings of that report should be a lesson to those in authority today, not only at Mera but in all parastatals and other government institutions.

People should never be given positions as gratification by political masters. Again, it is not proper to abuse office through by-passing of set procedures and policies.

I hope this gives more ‘fuel’ to Ombudsman Martha Chizuma to unearth more rot (current or past) in other government ministries, departments and agencies.

Show More

Related Articles

Back to top button

Adblock Detected

Please consider supporting us by disabling your ad blocker