Newest Malawian bloggers join global online conversations

It is no longer a secret that more Malawians are increasingly turning to the blogosphere for self-expression, information sharing, and commentary on a variety of Malawi related issues. This round-up will cover the newest entries into blogosphere with posts on politics, banking, health, city's cleanliness, racism, sms perils and personal reflections.

Politics And Urban Cleaning

As has been the case so far, Malawians are talking more and more about politics. In his latest post, Dictatorship haunts Malawian Politics, a media student, Pearson Nkhoma, looks at how and why it is easier to be a dictator in Malawi, a country where majority of its population was born during the authoritarian rule between 1964 to 1994:

Reading in the daily papers of Monday and Tuesday, one is left with one conclusion, “dictatorship is the only common principle that is practiced and shared in our political parties”. Malawi is flooded by undemocratic authoritarian dictatorial political parties. The leaders don’t see the importance of consulting the local people on issues that directly affect the locals.

Our political cohorts don’t have the capacity and time to consult local people; this is why they impose persons to represent us. Bingu wa Mutharika, the DPP Presidential candidate 2009 general elections, has just imposed a governor on Kasungu people and Bakili Muluzi, UDF presidential candidate for the same elections, has also imposed a shadow MP, Philip Bwanali, on the people of Thyolo for 2009 elections. Further more, it is alleged that AFORD imposed Loveness Gondwe as President for the party on its supporters.

Edwin Mulenga, a fresh graduate from the University of Malawi, lives and works in Malawi's biggest commercial city Blantyre from where he appreciates the clean-up program, “Operation Dongosolo”, which authorities initiated. Reading his post titled Cleaner and Safer Town, one gets the impression that every city user now is happy after a job well done:

One couldn't make out the beauty of our small cities because of the crowdiness, noises unnecessary traffic jam etc. Something had to be done, and Operation Dongosolo was one thing much anticipated by people who love their places. There were fears that chaos would break out due to vendors resistance to move to their allocated places. Luckily enough it was the Malawi Defence Force which was sent to ensure smooth allocation. Which vendor, I say, would have stood up to resist the armoured soldiers, clad in bush-like clothes? And just how clean and promising our towns look!

Poor Online Bank Service

UK-based Malawian blogger George Ng'ambi has no kind words for the banking sector in Malawi, which he describes as exploitative at most for its poor online service. With some banking knowlegde, George looks at the advantages of online banking and challenges Malawi Governemnt to sort out the mess. He writes specifically about National Bank of Malawi:

Do Malawians really have to pay K400 per month for the online service to the bank? Koma abale ma bank kuba!!!! (Brethren, this is theft). Where is their Corporate Social Responsibility? While most banks are encouraging this paper free service as a “Green” innitiative, its sad that our banks do not want to cut on unnecessary paper work by imposing prohibitive charges.The bank needs customers to use the online service more than customers themselves need the service. It reduces customers waiting time which reflects well on the bank. Reduces labour costs in the long-term whilst keeping stationery costs to a minimum, amongst other benefits. Therefore they should bear the cost than push it to non-suspecting customers… The Malawi government through its regulatory Authorities (Ministry of Finance and Reserve bank) is quiet over this fraudulent practice.

More Sinners In The City?

An ambitious Malawian preacher and a PhD theological student in South Africa, Peter Qeko Jere, is angry with the churches in Malawi and feels they are missing a point. He says most churches are not mission-focussed now:

In Malawi today, churches are so much busy trying to solve their internal squables and can not move forward in terms of development. Finances are spent on programs to do with problems solving process. Evangelism is not done at all. You hardly hear of any crusade in the districts as it used to being when some of us were growing up. Those days were fantastic because preachers of the word could have crusades like in all the districts. These days big crusades are done in cities may be these places have more sinners than the poor districts.

Blogger Bothered By Racism And Tribalism

Brian Kapito confesses that he is bothered the racism and tribalism which are big issues all over the world. In a country which has over 15 different tribes, he feels it is important for people to treat one another with respect. People from other nations form a special category in Malawi and that is he dwells on in his post adding it annoying and disturbing being on the receiving end of tribalism/racism. He asks Why?:

I must confess I have not always had sincere feelings towards Malawians of Indian origin, or Asians of Indian origin (help me out here!), anyway you get the drift, because I feel they look down upon local people (lets make as much money out of these people attitude before they know all we did was import these cheap shoes from China but price them on the Italian model), hoard goods, underpay and ill treat the Malawian employee, with statements like ‘ngati ntchito siufuna, basi tilemba wina’ or ‘dziko wanu, ndalama wathu’ (take or leave the job, we can recruit someone else, yes the land is yours but money belongs to us) being rather common, and there is no effort on their part to integrate!

Andekuche Chanthunya writes poetically about Malawi's politics on the blog A progressive Youth. In one poem titled FRUSTRATED EXILE, he writes:

Had you been there
You would have believed
We were eager for change.

But dear Brother
You came too late, too slow
To catch up with our pace

Will you rid off your ignorance?
To understand better
Its not just good governance
But POVERTY as well.

Malaria Killing Malawians

A Global Health Fellow at Havard University, journalist Kondwani Munthali, runs a blog, Kondwani Munthali -Malawi: Journey through issues that affect Malawi, Africa and the developing World with focus on Health, Education, Youth and Socio-political governance. His latest post discusses the reaction by the Tobacco Association of Malawi on the use of DDT in houses as a malaria control measure which he describes as shocking. He argues that it is Malaria and not Aids which kills the country:

In Malawi, malaria is endemic meaning that everyone is at risk of suffering from malaria. Closer to seventy –percent of our hospital beds are occupied by malaria patients. It has dire socio-economic consequences than any other disease.Malaria has become regarded as both a disease of poverty and a cause of poverty, as it accounts for a large loss of labor productivity. Local and international political commitments have been made to address the challenges that African nations must overcome to control epidemic and endemic malaria. The Roll Back Malaria (RBM) global partnership established in 1998 by the WHO has found strong support.

Tips on Cell phone use

Rather late than never, Mzuzu-based Patrick Achitabwino is an equally new blogger and in his earlier post on The SMS, he discusses the challenges of using a mobile phone:

Men, you can never be clever with these gadgets called cell phones. Nokia what, Motorolla what, they all come in different names, with a highly unimaginable power to break marriages at a lightening speed. Not even marriages built on the granite foundations of church oaths have the power to withstand the breaking power of mobile phones.

On a ligher note, female blogger Mercy Gondwe says she is now back to posting after fellow blogger wrote about her laziness:

Hahaha. Laziness is now over. I have been told to stop being lazy and start updating my blog. I certainly have been lazy but I will try as much as possible to keep on blogging. Blogging is fun; it has linked me with my old school mates. I enjoy reading what people write about themselves especially the crazy diaries.

2 comments

  • I would like to join this brog guys. It is so nice writing and i have enjoyed it always

    Will Malawian politicians Unite?

    I have always wondered if we will at one time have the Malawian politicians uniting and aah.

    Before the burial of the Malawian first lady, i was looking in the Newspapers and i quoted this in so many newspapers, “the demise of the first lady has brought unity among the different politicians etal.

    Come to the burial ceremony, a bodyguard was seen blocking the Former president from meeting the president.

    NB: Cassim Chilumpha was not recognized by the state at the airport when the remains were arriving in Blantyre.

    Dr Muluzi cancelled his trip and traveled all the way from UK. But the treatment he went through was just bad

  • Petro Chimaliro

    It would appear politics through politcal parties are failling to enhance economic growth and general development in most African states. Malawi is one such an example where you will find unneccesory fights between government and oppossiton. This can only make us blieve that the idea that Yoweri Museveni initaiated in Uganda where there were no political parties in parliament was the best for Africa. Let people simply choose their members of parliament period.

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