‘I am running to inspire’

On Sunday, December 23, artist Fredokiss, real name Penjani Kalua, announced his intention to contest as a Member of Parlianment (MP) for Blantyre City South Constituency. The artist, who is popular among the youth, made the announcement when he also launched his K1 million football trophy in Blantyre.

Fredokiss: I will always be a musician

Our Arts Editor EDITH GONDWE engaged the artist to get more about his political career and what this means to his music career.

Q

: What drove you to make such a big move considering your age?

A

: There are several factors. I am upset. I am tired and angry with the status quo. I am tired of complaining and just talking. As a young person, I always do what I can to be a solution to the various problems we are facing as youths, Malawians and human beings in general. Above 60 percent of our population are youths but stats show that less than one percent are in decision-making spaces. We are not saying being young qualifies one for any role. No! But as it is, our dreams and aspirations are not reflected in these decision making spaces. Hence the need for us to take up these roles and beyond. As a generation, we are also tasked with demystifying the political space. For years, there is a myth that these spaces are not for ordinary people like me and you but for crooks and liars. This has to change, how…? By having ordinary people run and occupy these spaces.  In general, we are pushing a youth agenda and clearing the way for more youth participation.

Q

: You are known and loved as a musician. Since you made the announcement to join mainstream politics what has been the reaction of the musical world, especially your fans?

A

: Positive. My followers have always known me as an agent of change. This is change…

Q

: Have you joined a particular political party? If not why?

A

: No. Independent. I belong to the school of thought that does not trust the current political system more especially political parties. They are either pushing an unclear agenda or pushing a personal agenda for a specific family. In addition, I represent Interests of people with varied political affiliations and backgrounds. My candidacy brings them all together despite their differences. Political parties in Malawi have also divided us more than uniting us.

Q

: Some are arguing that you are riding on your success and popularity as an artist. What do you say about this?

A

: God’s hand has dealt with me gently despite my weaknesses and shortfalls. He is always making my cup overflow.

Q

: Is this your departure from music?

A

: No. I will always be Fredo. Next year after elections we are doing ‘Fill up BNS’ in summer where we will hold a big show at Bingu National Stadium so I will always be a musician.

Q

: What are your concluding remarks?

A

: I am running to inspire. After me, in 2024, there will be hundreds of Fredos running, both males and females. Real change is coming in 2024. As young people, we are geared to overthrow all forms of mediocrity and obstacles standing on our way to progress and the actualisation of our potential. We are tired of being intoxicated by politicians. As such, we are marching towards our destiny in full force. There is a bigger force coming behind me! My prayer is that all young people who are running should deliver beyond expectations so that we set a good precedent for our fellow youth who will run in 2024. As we are pushing the youth agenda. We acknowledge the fact that youth cannot do it alone and being a youth does not qualify one for any role. You can be a youth and be a bad leader. You can be old and be a very good and wise leader. It’s a must we balance and acknowledge the fact that every human being whether young or old is useful and is in God’s divine plan on earth, which is the master plan. All We need as young people is to be given a fair chance to participate in these decision making spaces. Thanks. n

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