"It's shameful that the UDF party wants to take us back to the dark days,"

Mr Gwanda Chakuamba (2003)

search antimuluzi.blogspot.com

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Proud to be Malawian

PDF Print E-mail
Rikki Shayo

As the year comes to an end it seems supreme that an aggressive slogan campaign to build patriotism among Malawians, dubbed "Proud to be a Malawian" should be a collective resolution for 2008.

Well aware of the turbulence among Malawians, based on our political situation, the government as well as well wishers ought to make a strong case for the campaign on both print and electronic media.

Only love for this country can motivate us get out of our present predicament.

It is ironic how Americans, dissatisfied with the state of their
country in its formative years, provided the impetus they needed
to make the United States what it is today.

I am by no means trying to make the government look bad and
irresponsible but it is true that not a single one of the so-called super
powers started off as the flourishing lands they are today. The lands
Malawians are shamelessly flocking to because of their achievement.

The citizens in those super powers simply put their heads down
and worked tirelessly until they realized their dreams.
Green cards Instead of Malawians following suit, we are now ridiculously
tripping over our own feet in a bid to become citizens of these countries! What a shame.

We were not born here to get green cards elsewhere.
My fellow brothers and sisters, we need to promise ourselves whenever we go abroad or overseas that we must come back and develop this country. If not who will? There
is more than enough to live for here.
Before offering a quick disapproval, ask yourself why there are people prospering here if this country is truly so hopeless. Some started from scratch and have built
themselves dream businesses. Others have gotten prestigious positions in
successful corporations. There are those who chose to pursue performing or visual arts and are happy with their choices e.g Lucius Banda, Mlaka Maliro and many
Exploit hopeless situations Still others are becoming wealthier by investing wisely. In
fact, some renowned financial successes claim that it is the socalled hopeless situations that provide opportunities for accomplishment. What is business after all, if not providing solutions to human problems?
It is true that former leadership bears much of the responsibility for our patriotic decay. Today's average Malawian has not been taught to love his motherland. When we got
independence, our leaders instilled in our hearts a feeling of national pride because of their own strong sense of victory.
Their goal, at the time, was to have Malawians enjoy the land they passionately fought for.
The downward spiral started when leaders became more concerned with keeping their positions in the government. Bent on stifling competition, the government forgot
its duty to the nation and began vigorously nipping every ambitious
and capable person in the bud; this was every regime's top priority.
Intelligent fools If you are not one of those people who believe that Malawi "has its
owners," then you know that it is we who willingly install people who make a mockery of leadership. The fact is, we vote these people in under the spell of group psychology. Just think of the multiparty euphoria in 1992.
Many of us were displeased with Western media, which cautioned that
we were voting for people whose true colours we had already seen. The
media was right.
One would think that people who only show up when they need to bribe or incite the youth assault their opponents would not fool an intelligent people like ours, but no,
a fool and his money are soon elected to parliament.
We are intelligent. In fact, without prejudice black Africans are the most intelligent race in the world. This fact is based on statistics gathered from worldwide academic performance.
Even if this were not true, it does make a strong case for the fact that we have plenty of intelligent people within our ranks. I dare say that ignorance, the victim mentality, and self-doubt are the reasons we are lagging behind regional and world powers that actually rely on our resources to keep them going.
Reject negativism The first step we need to make is to change our attitudes toward
ourselves. Our negativity is evident from such areas as naming and language. We are so proud of European names that we are offended when people use our 'home names.'
How many people have you met who abandoned their traditional names on arriving in the city? Sometimes we do not adopt European names; we alter ours.
Yet other races proudly expect us to use their native names, even the ones that comprise only of consonants. They regard adjusting to accommodate those who do not speak their language as condescending. We view adjusting ourselves and our language to accommodate outsiders as promotion.
As far as language is concerned, most Malawians and especially the youth feel 'proud' only when they speak English. Doing something the English way means doing it well, while doing it the African way based on my continental affiliation, means I have done a shoddy job.
Case of low self-esteem Our national self-esteem is so low, in fact, that we readily let outsiders define how we speak our language.
Just listen to the high-powered FM stations call this country 'Malaway'.

The language of the conqueror, hen spoken by the conquered, ecomes the language of a slave.
What about the language of the slave hat the conqueror changes, and then he slave adopts with gratitude and ladness?
We need to toil away without the reedy and selfish naggings that have aused us to deplete our land to nrich our individual lives. We forget hat our grandchildren and their ffspring will be the ones to suffer because of our corruption. When we are propagating the agendas of the foreign investors, when we refuse to pay our bills, we make life that much harder for those who will come after us.
Money will not solve problems like lack of rain and impoverished essential amenities providers. India, for instance, is now reaping the harvest of its intractable determination. In an article in one of their newspapers boldly titled India as Managerial Number One, Swaminathan S Anklesaria Aiyar outlines how cynical Sir Frederick Upcott, then chief commissioner of the Great Indian Peninsula, was when Jamsetji Tata suggested that India could manufacture steel.
Upcott pledged to eat every ounce of steel that Tata could produce. A century later, Tata, modern India's largest empire, is set to take over the entire British steel industry. The Tata group already took over Tetley, Britain's leading tea-bag brand and the world's second biggest at $432 million.
Chained in poverty Unless we become self-sufficient, we will always be slaves, bowing down to the dictates of the donor community. The legendary Bob Marley sang, "I remember on the slave ship, how they brutalized the very souls. Today they say that we are free, only to be chained in poverty."
The only way to better our individual economy is to better our country's economy. Tata said, "What is good for Tata is good for India." Perhaps if we think along these lines we will lift ourselves out of our national lack.
It is time we stopped running away physically, mentally, and emotionally, and began working towards building Malawi. We are not as disadvantaged as other countries that have far outshone us. Before Samsung Electronics was started, South Korea had gone through a war. Today, Samsung is among the world's top three electronics companies. Israel has had problems since Biblical
times, yet it is the most industrialized country in the Middle East. Among
the world's most competitive economies, it ranks 15th, according to the World's Economic Forum. We are not disadvantaged.
Dismiss slave mentality Paraphrasing the legendary Nelson Mandela's words, who are we not to be magnificent, talented, brilliant, and triumphant? It is time to dismiss our slave mentality and realize that we have what it takes to make Malawi
the majestic nation she can be. It is superior to be Proud to be Malawian.

No comments: