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Stiff-necked fools

He, that being often

reproved hardeneth his

neck, will suddenly

be destroyed and

that without remedy

-Proverbs 29 vs–

AT the dawn of the 1990s Malawi found itself on the precipice of chaos.

That was the time some valiant Malawians thought enough was enough and decided to put their napes on the guillotine by shaking the foundations of a system that had ruled the country with an iron fist for 30 years. Men died. Others fled. Others remained. In the end, a system that had turned Malawians’ lives into a dress rehearsal of hell fell. It took people’s sacrifice and deep affection for the country to give up their luxuries and even their lives to see change.

Somehow, for some of us who profess some religion believed that the halo of God hovered over those who fought for our liberties.

There must be something special about Malawi which I believe comes from some benevolent superpower. Every time we are in a crisis that would otherwise turn this country into a pile of sad memories, we somehow come out and still remain a country.

Divinity has given this country so many opportunities and, sadly, we have been ungrateful and seem unrepentant. We always make one mistake after the next.

After replacing the one party rule, multiparty democracy came in with the flamboyant Bakili Muluzi leading the United Democratic Front (UDF). What had promised to be an era of freshness and new liberties degenerated into a lost decade. Hope turned into hopelessness and jubilation became discontentment. Suddenly, morals went North, education standards ran South, health service provision went West and financial prudence jumped East. It was a period of total mayhem which left most Malawians with dark-spotted knees after hours of supplication to rid the nation of another catastrophic leadership. Divinity has its own time.

After a desperate war to remain in power, which would have meant a prolonged period of suffering for Malawians, God saved Malawi by using Muluzi’s own lieutenants to defeat his Third Term and Open Term bills. God save Malawi.

Furious Muluzi picked an outsider, Bingu wa Mutharika, who he campaigned for relentlessly. Muluzi’s scheme was that once Bingu gets into power, the former will still puppeteer the successor. Bingu who looked timid all along, shocked the world when he sold Muluzi a dummy to slid Democratic Progressive Party through the key hole of deception to government.

Bingu became the country’s saviour and Malawi became a country again. Things started moving and Muluzi’s 10-year term was a far cry to Bingu’s two years of office. That is why Bingu won the 2009 elections with over 50 percent of votes.

Things changed around 2009 when Bingu lost his bearing. He started thinking that all plush jobs are a preserve of the Lhomwe, he believed there is no soul strutting the face of the earth who was sharper than him and developed some unexplainable paranoia and started seeing everyone outside his cabal as his enemy. Fuel and forex crises followed, international relations soured and he let loose of his party thugs to terrorise perceived dissidents. God intervened on April 5 when he plucked Mutharika from our midst. What would have followed would have been a crisis but we sailed through.

We are now, as a nation, in times when God has intervened in our affairs. After the 2019 May elections results, it was clear, even from the percentages of the vote the phantom winner got, that majority of Malawians refused this government. To cut the story short, the Constitutional Court vindicated many when it nullified the presidential elections results. Suddenly there is peace.

What remains now is for the leaders to know that God has so many issues to attend to such as the war in Syria, Coronavirus and Al shabaab. He has given Malawi so many chances to free itself and if we miss this one, we are damned.

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