Covid-19 sneaked in our lives sometime in 2019 and caused a lot of disruption in the year 2020 to now. Some people have advocated for that year 2020 of inactivity due to the pandemic be struck off our calendars, never to be counted as having happened. This has been a period of total inactivity with people staying indoors for times on which would be likened only to times of war. Our generation has not seen a time when people in masses had to wear something to cover their mouths on end as they do their daily routine.
In areas where the pandemic took time to be noticed, it caused a lot of unrest on being seen causing people to widely speculate unimagined theories. Suddenly those we never knew how to be scientists came to us to explain about the fact that sound waves can travel through air and that just like it, the virus travels manipulatively through antennas and to be specific mobile phone network towers. On top of all this, we heard of the obvious fear of death but this time from those who had been teaching us to be prepared for such eventuality which only exposed them that they had no belief in their preparedness or faith.
To many, Covid-19 has shown us many possibilities in this life. For those who are honest, they might admit it has brought such gratitude in man to appreciate creation. It has made us be more aware of the liberties and things generally we take for granted, teaching us that in the scheme of life everything on earth is important. For instance most often people go about doing things ordinarily without noticing that they are breathing air, the pandemic has not only made us realise that life depends on oxygen but also that the body can sometimes fail to utilise this freely available resource. On the other extreme, one of the things that has arisen as result of Covid-19 Lockdown, is it has shown that even simple remote communication where you are looking at other people through a video, computer or phone screen, can be as emotional as you would experience speaking to them physically, face-to-face. After all is said it has shown us that more than anything, man is spirit man.
The quotes this week are an extension to extracting from a book that has a story from one of the African women to taste a cabinet post immediately after the colonial chapter. I am sure that the selected quotations below from the book will enlighten you to one or two life lessons, read and enjoy:
LOMATHINDA ROSE CHIBAMBO SPEAKS by Timwa Lipenga
“Later, I learnt that the governor had talked to Banda, who had apparently said that everyone could come back to cabinet, except for Kanyama. The chief secretary of cabinet, Mr Peter Youens, invited Ching’oli to come and discuss the issue with Dr Banda. —— Ching’oli refused to return to cabinet without Kanyama. As a result of that disagreement Ching’oli was beaten up by guards at the prime minister’s residence. The Chief Secretary had to intervene. Chirwa was nursed by Lady Jones. “
“Chipembere then wrote to Banda, asking him to come and help in the work of leadership, an invitation which was deliberately vague. Kamuzu insisted on something more precise, the presidency of the Nyasaland African Congress. ——– Chipembere agreed to this. It was at this point that, according to Ross and Power, the plotting against TDT Banda began. Ross points out that the young men decided to use a trip that TDT Banda had made to India to question him on a donation that the congress had received to help fund the trip. TDT was unable to give an explanation and was subsequently suspended and later expelled from the party in 1958, the same year that Banda arrived in Nyasaland. According to Ross, the visit to India was an ‘unforeseen opportunity to clear the way for Kamuzu.’ ——— Power specifically singles out Chipembere and Chiume as the masterminds behind the plot and points out that the trip to India never even happened. TDT Banda had no passport. That, however, did not stop the young men from making the accusation about the misappropriation of funds.”
“……. This was a different Malawi from what I had known. People in different departments made you feel as if you were a beggar and as if they were doing you a favour for the services they were supposed to give. ——– Before I had gone to Zambia, people used to have that feeling that they should work in order to build their country. Ah, I did not find much of that spirit when I came back.”
“But this is not the case in Malawi. And, perhaps that’s why we are failing even to move forward, you know. It’s now we are going to fifty years since independence, what have we achieved? We don’t think about the nation as a whole, but individuals. We individually think, ‘How much can I accumulate?’ So I really don’t know because…. this was not the case when we were fighting. If we fought with a spirit of saying, ‘Oh well, I should benefit,’ we would never have done anything . But the thing was, ‘Our people are suffering, we are suffering together with our people, let us achieve something, so that we can be known to be who we are……..”
“(Sighs.) This country, whether we are lucky or we are not lucky, ah, what are we? We don’t know how to appreciate things that others have done. You see what I mean? We have that jealousy. ‘Oh, why should it be so-and-so?’ Now because of that, then we fail to appreciate the good things that others have done, and even to emulate, to say perhaps we should do this. —— And that’s why we fail even to talk about people who have done good things. And that is a disease which is eating us up. ……”