Political collectiveness Malawi can it work?
By Analytical Rose - Sun Dec 07, 6:50 pm
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Malawi: As Malawians we know that our country is at it lowest ebb in terms of progress and development. In my humble assessment most of this is due to the fact that we are not very good managers. That is a personal opinion and I am very happy for an open debate on it. I have arrived at this conclusion because I have tried to understand how poor resources alone can be responsible for all the challenges we seem to be failing to deal with in Malawi.In actual fact I spend a lot of my time in the west and I get disillusioned when I realize that even the so called rich governments live on borrowed money and deficits and so in essence resources are indeed limited all round. I do however appreciate that in some parts of the world resources are better used than others and perhaps this is what makes the difference between developed and not developed in terms of economics.I have to realize that along with this comes an attitude that is broad enough to understand that if resources are somehow distributed so that all can access some of it to sustain their lives reasonably you move forward because everybody can contribute to that system and sustain it. However if those resources are concentrated in one sector of the population there is bound to be suffering and limitations while the rest of the nation is struggling to make ends meet.
In politics parties form an ideology about how they are going to best manage the nations resources to the best effect for everyone. We have already agreed that there is never enough to be extravagant about it but we also I am sure are going to agree that with good management what is available ought to be given it’s best management so that it looks after each one of the citizens of that country. By implication it means when a party forms it has an ideology, a set of policies and manifestos that governs that party. These defining lines are the pillars that distinguish one party form the other.This is then when I get into trouble when I am rationalizing non partisanship principles.When you hear of coalitions in politics, when you hear of inclusiveness in non partisan party politics how is it supposed to work? My problem with it is this; In the first place two parties are different so for them to work together one of three processes has to happen:
1) either one of those parties has an agenda to gain something from the original party- that is not coalition to me that is exploitation. This could be in the form internal information which will help the opposition weaken the incumbent side, it could be making themselves look current by associating with the incumbent but any of this does not render itself honest to the concept of the original ideology of the incumbent party, or indeed the other party for that matter.
2) or the one party that is working with the incumbent party is going to have to serve two masters.For example, APM has his policies and ideas on how to run the budding mining industry in Malawi but by virtue of giving this ministry to Atupele Muluzi, who has UDF ideologies on running Malawian resources, it allows for Atupele’s ideas. Yes I can see that this can be fantastic if Atupele was a super balanced man who saw everything objectively and run the ministry simply on what is reasonable. But we all agree that cannot really happen for the simple reason that he belongs to different party which has it’s own ideals and indeed has expectations from Atupele which are bound to be the ones the president has of his. How can you serve two masters at the same time?
3) The third possibility is that the incumbent is about to swallow the smaller party. In itself there are merits to this but one major problem is that we voted DPP into power, this was because we wanted DPP policies, we wanted the DPP manifesto and so to then merge when we have already got you in power is to renage on the voter and that is not acceptable. This is exactly what Joyce Banda did. The country had voted DPP into power. Simply because DPP’s leader died should have not given Joyce Banda the single handed power to turn Malawi into a PP led government. She got away with it because Malawians are docile and she has a combination of arrogance with a touch of naivety, but that was highly illegal it should have been stopped!
This is how I am left very confused with what and how the relationship like the one we are seeing between UDF and DPP can work. We must always remember the reason for forming a government is to look after the nation and if I can get some feed back on how such incompatible parties can work for the good of the country without compromising their own beliefs on how to serve the country I would like to hear it. I have no choice by the time I try to rationalize this but to conclude that unless I deeply misunderstand something, and I do think the working closely of two differing parties is a non starter. If it continues there must be something else outside political ideology holding the two parties together.Obama has tried it, it does not work for him, Cameron had to use it to survive politics but look how much he is struggling. Now these are established Democracies what more with a new fragile Malawi?
It is important at this stage of the argument to emphasis that I don’t expect enmity between the different parties NO! The recent stuff where they were making heavy whether of APM not greeting Chakwera at a public meeting is just childish stuff! There should be cordiality between party leaders indeed party embers, but agreeing to disagree how to tackle a problem is perfectly healthy and it should be encouraged. People should stick to their beliefs! I do fear sometimes if politicians in in Malawi are by and large driven by belief? or do they have belief which quickly gets messed up in office because of the enormity of the responsibility? or is it not there in the first place anyway and they get confused as soon as they find themselves overwhelmed?
I personally would like to know what is happening between UDF and DPP. This relationship needs to be defined clearly because these are two different parties. I did not vote for UDF I voted for DPP. If DPP have seen it in their wisdom to amalgamate with UDF at least give me the chance to understand why and how so I can either agree or disagree, and see whether I want to support thr new ideology or not. We call ourselves a Democracy and I expect democratic behavior in our incumbent regimes.
Those that argue that western governments function with collectiness need to know that these governments are fraught with problems but also they usually have no choice because of may be their weak position after a national vote. However if you observe how they are functioning it is usually decisive and difficult for their nations. A good example is the UK where if you look closely all that happens is that Cameron(Tory) shoves the hard jobs to Craig( Libral Democrats), so Craig is the one who struggles with is party’s expectations and yet Cameron does not come out a strong leader either! with all the internal conflicts.
I personally don’t think this coalitions or collectiveness can work for the better of the country they might work for the party or the individuals involved in the party for whatever reasons but I would like to say if I really wanted my Natural resources managed by UDF principles I would have voted Atupele but, I wanted them managed the DPP way and I really would like DPP to bear that in mind every single day. Incorporating Atupele was interesting but to get so involved with UDF is worrying and it needs to be revised seriously.
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