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Time for a revolution in Malawi

It appears that we Malawians strongly agree that the development of our country is not at par with our expectations. All our neighbouring economies are doing well while we are dwarfing. There is a sense of disillusionment in the economic development of the country. It would appear that several economic measures injected in the economy to kick start it are yet to start bearing fruits. This is at slightly over 50 years upon attaining independence.

It is the desire of every Malawian that this country develops and we take pride in having a home that is economically emancipated. Now Malawi has to keep focus on the next 50 years so that if, in case we have lost the past 50 years, then we should not lose the next 50.

We should no longer be a country that after a century of independence should still depend on donor support, struggling to feed its people and failing to diversify its trade portfolios.

Now is a time for a revolution never before imagined. This is not a call to arms. We have no human enemy to fight; our enemy is poverty and the abject impoverishment and misery it has brought on our people.

We do not need a coup de tat; we have striven for the democracy we attained and future generations have to be proud of such achievement and jealously safeguard it.

We do not need hatred or regionalist tendencies.

All we need is a radical thinking that can lead to the resuscitation of the economy of our county and uplifting the lives of our citizens, most of whom live below the poverty line.

This revolution has to start with an inner consciousness. Each and every person should firstly ask himself or herself what exactly he or she is doing in developing our distinguished motherland. Now is the time that we all become architects of change, bringing in new thinking that can move the country forward.

It is unthinkable that we expect change when all along we keep on solving problems with the solutions of the past, the very same solutions that have failed us.

We come from different constituencies. Almost each and every constituency has people who live either in the constituency or outside it. Talk of economists, engineers, accountants, medical doctors, professors in any fields, and all professionals too numerous to mention come from constituencies. Has it ever dawned on these professionals to contribute a little something to their communities as a development strategy?

These are people who cannot send their children to their rural homes during holidays on the basis that they will contact cholera or diarrhoea due to unsafe water. While the people in their communities walk 10 kilometres to draw a pail of water from an unsecure well, they flash chlorinated water in their water closet toilets.

It has to dawn on us all that our communities look to us as role models and their developmental side does not have to rest in the hands of a mere Member of Parliament. If just 10 top people in a constituency were to sink at least a borehole a year in their home constituency, what change could that make to our people? SIGNIFICANT.

It is time we develop a 50 year master plan. We have to be ready to sacrifice more to develop the energy sector. Why is it that when all other economies in Africa are moving forward we are stagnant? It is because they are ready for development and they took stock of their development requirements and then sought partners through all appropriate means to help.

While we are struggling with electricity in Malawi our colleagues are adding more power to their grid through renewable sources and are getting admirable support. A lot is happening in Africa in countries that have a master plan for development. Ghana was, as of June this year, slated to receive US$40 million funding from the Climate Investment Funds (CIF) to transform its renewable energy sector.

Tanzania’s mining industry is to receive US$45 million from the World Bank to expand its mining sector.

And Africa is getting more connected and we do not have to lose.

The Ethiopian Electric Power, the state-power generation agency is reported to have signed a US$120 million with China Electric Power and Equipment Technology Company to set up an Ethiopia-Kenya power transmission. It will be 1,045km long and carry 500 kilovolts.

Ethiopia again is building a US$5 billion Renaissance Dam. When completed, it will generate 6000 megawatts of electricity for both domestic use and exports. The most striking aspect of the project is that it is entirely funded by Ethiopia, without any foreign investment.

All the countries that have made it from poverty to stardom had to revolutionise their thinking.

Talk of China, Singapore, Malaysia, they had ever been under abject poverty and even worse as we are right now. We have an opportunity to move our country forward, to propel ourselves from the meshes of poverty into wealth.

First things first, we have to revolutionise our minds, we have to come to the situation where we hate corruption, we have to come to the situation where each and every public officer will put the interests of the state first than personal interests.

We bite the bullet now or never and take the significant steps to embark on developments that will transform Malawi in the next five years.

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