There are many in this world that have, in their lifetime, accumulated a lot of wealth through a hard day’s work and truly, just like the good book tells us that man shall earn by the sweat of thy brow (hope I got that right), these are the unsung heroes that our country needs to celebrate in this lifetime, while a majority of them are still alive and kicking.I am talking about dear sons and daughters of the land whose great deeds have created echos both far and wide such that it would take us the entire day if we were to start regurgitating all the good they have done and the difference they have made in society ( and yes, it could be even at family level). It is admirable that some of them have bequeathed inheritance to siblings and kinsmen and their philanthropic works are impacting positively in lives of fellow country folk.
And then there are those ‘overnight billionaires’ who happen to ‘stumble’ upon a tonne of fortune, either through sheer luck or crooked means. There is a huge difference between the two in that, usually, those who have earned it through crooked means tend to make a lot of noise and their greedy souls would largely display that ‘give me more’ placard readily on their forehead. This is the lot that would want every potion of the national pie to go to their kinsmen; be they undeserving, unqualified, underaged and whatever else you can think of. Those that have rightly earned their keep would seldom walk around ‘with their noses in the air’ like the women of Israel (can we have some Church up in here!) and even those that they have bequeathed the inheritance to are humble enough to keep a head over their shoulders and not the other way round.
But not many have inherited treasures (meaning physical) to last a lifetime; which is why we all must give our best shot at every available opportunity to ensure that we make something of our lives and, directly or indirectly, make a difference in the lives of those that depend upon us.
And so, come the morning of Tuesday, June 9,2020, thousands upon thousands of the country’s youths in all the country’s three regions trooped out, school certificates in hand, to have a go at landing jobs within the Ministry of Health (nothing fancy; just ordinary Ward Clerks, Health Surveillance Assistants etc) through what were branded ‘walk in’ interviews. What that fool (whoever it was that came up with such a warped idea) did not take into consideration is the fact that there is a huge number of youths who are on the unemployment list, some of them even highly qualified, and would do anything just to have a chance of undergoing a job interview and therefore as a potential employer, the government ought to have thoroughly planned for this recruitment process through shortlisting, selection (probably a better way of sieving candidates) than adopting a ‘one size fits all’ kind of approach.
Through someone else’s carelessness, 118 innocent job seekers not only endured their worst nightmare as they jostled and withstood police teargas, but sadly, they ended up in hospital beds after sustaining injuries of various degrees. And on the morning after, the line minister had the cheek to say they had learnt their lesson and would instead conduct the interviews separately. How about this, mister minister; if you and your people had been serious about the whole recruitment exercise in the first place, then those innocent people would not have been lying on hospital beds as was the case on Tuesday. And to think that those that eventually waited for the ‘interviews’ waited till night and it was all for nothing! Somebody somewhere needs to get their priorities straight.
It is downright wrong for anyone, government for that matter, to be playing on people’s emotions, particularly now as we approach the crucial Presidential election, by dangling job ‘opportunities’ when in actual fact you know that the country’s unemployment problem is much bigger than some 1000 job openings somewhere.
This is a lesson for all aspiring for public office; we need more than one window of job opening to get by…empower us so that we can create own wealth and possibly create jobs for millions of others or better yet, re-organise how things are done in public service so that the youth can sing a better tune. Let me stop there because some words are better left unsaid.
Stephen Dakalira is a seasoned Journalist who works as Times Group’s Online and Digital Executive Editor. He is also the Assistant Editor of The Sunday Times Newspaper, and author of Full Circle column which appears in Malawi News; all of these under the Times Group stable.
He has previously worked in key positions for some of Malawi’s key media institutions such as Malawi News Agency, Capital FM Radio and Star Radio (Now Timveni Radio).