07:40 pm - Monday 19 November 2018

Do we as a nation understand the grave consequencies of corruption and inefficencies

By Analytical Rose - Fri Oct 11, 9:26 pm

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Malawi: The hot topic at this time in Malawi is corruption and new facets of how deeply entrenched this corruption is in our nation as whole are coming out on a daily basis and it is shocking. As I read these stories, I can’t help wondering if we as a nation really do understand the grave consequencies of handling our affairs like this.I have tried to understand what is at the basis of this gross irresponsibly selfish behaviour by people trusted with very responsible positions?

Let me explain myself. By the way, when they use the word donation it really is not a donation because the money is a debt basically.A debt is money you are expected to pay back. So lets use a very simplistic scenario, whereby one borrows 1000 Malawi Kwacha to pay fees for children with a view to paying back when they get their own money. Then instead of paying the fees the money is used for chibuku. So at the end of this process not only are you in debt but you still have not paid your child’s fee and they end up being asked to leave school . The chibuku you bought the money with has now finished because it is a perishable and if you really like chibuku you will have to find more money to buy yet another lot of chibuku and the whole cycle repeats itself!!! this is what I have finally understood to be Malawi’s problem. Malawians, i.e. Leaders and citizens at large need to understand that part of being independent, part of becoming a democracy means that people have to learn to understand why and how things are done because those systems are their life line.



Lets upgrade the scenario a little; if the minister of health diverts money, whatever its source is, in Malawi it is likely to be a donor’s contribution; the part of medical care which it was meant to address is not going to happen, so if it’s buying pethidine (strong pain killer)for labouring women for example, that pethidine will not be available in the hospital. Because the money has been squandered it means even the wife of the squanderer comes into labour into this hospital they will not have the very necessary drug of pethidine for their labour. So lets reflect here, what has actually happened is that by the minister being irresponsible and diverting the money,services have gone down and as you can see his own family has been affected.

In other words its not clever to try and swindle the govenment because the consequences of doing that will affect the whole country and even the squanderor will be affected! This means that at some point very soon Malawians need to start thinking a lot more inclusively than they are doing now or their nation will sink faster than they can imagine.I used to think that after 50 years of independence we remain poor because we have no idea about management, well this is true but we also are very narrow minded about how to improve our lives. We need to learn that you can improve your life much more effectively by being broad based and less selfish and greedy.The latter two are very short term methods but a broad based supporting way of moving forward is much longer lasting.

I am fairly old and so these principles were taught to me by a different Malawi to the Malawi we live in now. I fear that our young ones may have missed out on these messages because all they have for role models are these people we are reading about in the news papers lately. So how do we set about reversing this?

First fo all Leadership needs to be honest, transparent and exemplary.

Schools need to have a section where these values are taught and taught well so that the child qualifies with an understanding of the impotrtance of the other person to themselcves

Finally I do think there is scope for Malawian schools to teach umunthu. Because Malawi is now changing to a money based society, less time is spent on building up the character of the child like it was, children are left to gadgets which are not necessarily constructive! so you get a rise in rapes, robbery, lack of sensitivity towards each other as human beings in the country. Simple ettiquette, ulemu is no longer there! the very fabric of our society is being fragmented and because of the corruption as described  above people feel like they have to join the band wagon; you even hear the president using phrases like ” Ino ndi nthawi yathu ife” you know the minute you become a president you are a president of all people in Malawi and so it cannot be that at any time its your time No! at all times it is about a serious look at how to improve life for all Malawians regardless of what party you belong to. The picture in Malawi now is this

Rising poverty

Rising crime

Rising division amongst regions, tribes, parties

None of this helps the country; all it does is fragment the nation, confuse the issue, the most vulnerable of our society are the ones that suffer first! even the ones that squander the money through misappropriations, it does not even last long and no it does not meet all their needs, they still at some point need the national services to help them with one or the other of their challenges.

Fellow countrymen and ladies please lets learn to look after systems so they look afater us,lets learn to love thy neighbour genuinely because in so doing we end up loving ourselves.If we love our country we will be the beneficiaries of our sound polocies, if we behave irresponsibly we will be the ones to pay for the same ineeficeincy behaviour we are displaying. As a Malawian I beg you to think about this very calmly and seriously. It is important, vital to our survival.


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