Pedagogy of the pensioned Malawi Young Pioneers

We spent an extremely restful last week following the conclusion of our announcements of the best performers of 2017. For the first time in years, we slept soundly like retired wives do. Professor Abiti Joyce Befu, MG 66 and MEGA-1, showed her magnanimity by taking us to restaurant at Rumphi Boma,  whereRumphians from Mlowe and Mzimbians from Northern Umzimba, like to build and retire.

Machipisa Munthali, the man touted as Malawi’s Nelson Mandela, bought a string of houses here after being compensated by the Bakili Muluzi administration for his wrongful arrest and imprisonment.  He would have built at Mlowe but business sense told him it made no sense to invest millions of hard earned kwacha in an area that did not assure him of returns on his investment.

When we got there, Abiti took us to a restaurant that served hard drinks, soft drinks and halaal meals. It was decent by Rumphian standards. I asked the young man who came to take our orders if he really understood what halaal was.

“Vyakurghaivo Chiuta walikuzomelezga!” the young man said.

Mzee Mandela and I laughed in unison like conjoined twins.

“Nanangiska?” he went on, his face hardly concealing his puzzlement.

“Indeed, Halaal food is one that has been prepared following Muslim rites of slaughtering and preserving animal food. And you need special certification from the halaal department of the Muslim Association of Malawi,” explained Mzee Mandela, a long time ardent Muslim but recent defector to Christianity.

As we sat down waiting for our meals, each one of us lost in his or her self.  Then a man walked into the restaurant. I recognised him as Thomson Dauzi, a former Malawi Young Pioneer, who, unlike others who decided to politically lie low after they were forcibly disbanded by the Malawi army during Operation Bwezani (zida), was involved in partisan party politics.

“Hi!” Dauzi said, beaming with that rare friendliness of an undeserving millionaire.

“Long time,” I said.

“We have been fighting for our dues for years; now the ordeal is over,” Dauzi said.

“How much was your pension?” Nganga asked, “I want to compare with mine as retired police commissioner.”

“Not much,” Dauzi said, smiling. “By the way, how much are the meals here?”

“You want to pay for us?” Alhajj Mufti Jean-Philippe  LePossoin asked.

“I can. What are friends for?” Dauzi said, adding, “Pension money is for sharing with friends.”

“But you have not answered my question. How much was your pension?” Nganga asked.

“Not much, a few million kwacha. Maybe our former bosses, like the Inspectors and presidential body guards, got something better. But at my level, this is a virtual windfall,” Dauzi admitted.

“So, what do you plan to do with your money?” Abiti Joyce asked, opening her mouth for the first time.

“I will contest for the Rumphi East constituency. I can assure you, during the 2019 elections campaign Malawians will get to know all the MCP atrocities,” Dauzi swore.

“Mr Thomson….!” Jean-Philippe called.

“Honourable Dauzi in waiting,” Dauzi joked.

“Your notorious organisation was disbanded in the early 1990s and you have waited all these long years to reveal the atrocities of your dear party. The MCP is the party in whose you name, Honourale Dauzi, killed, maimed, abducted and tortured innocent Malawians and unfortunate foreigners.  Why did you not reveal those atrocities all these years? Is it because you have now been paid your hefty pension for the torture you carried out?” Jean-Philippe said, feigning anger.

“It was the MCP that was sending us to kill, torture, steal, rape, and infect girls with STIs” Dauzi maintained.

“An organisation can send you to kill? Who in the MCP government commanded you to harass Malawians?” Nganga asked.

Et tu commissioner?” Dauzi wondered.

“If I were you I would keep very low and enjoy my blood money. Don’t you feel ashamed the government has paid you for victimising innocent people? Don’t you think the best you, and other pensioned colleagues, can do now is to campaign for the compensation of the victims of your State-sanctioned terrorism? If I were you I would have surrendered the blood money to a charity,” Jean-Philippe suggested.

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