Last week we planned to interview the Tate of Chipembezo cha Makolo, before visiting Mwanza and Neno, the mother of all charcoal production centres in Southern Malawi. We also planned to visit Liwonde to admire the Kasupe and Chikala Hills where the UDF believes a meteor once fell and announced that Bakili Muluzi would be president forever.
Some people still believe only a Muluzi should be president of Malawi. Similarly, DPP believes that only a Mutharika ought to rule Malawi. In the PP, too, the belief is that God created Amai to be President until 2024. Conventions will be held, but the presidential candidates and their running-mates are already known.
We did not meet the Tate of Chipembezo because, we were told, he was too busy to meet us. We did not go to Liwonde because someone advised us against the trip.
So, Mwanza and Neno was thus the only option. We planned to visit Mphatamanga Gorge and Thambani where in 1983, four senior MCP politicians were found dead hours after the Malawi Broadcasting Corporation had announced the four were fleeing the country in one car.
On our way to Mwanza, Jean-Philippe asked me for more details about the area we were visiting.Â I told him that once upon a time, Mwanza and Neno were one district, but President Muluzi decided to split it into manageable entities. As a result, Neno now has its own hospital, police station, and district commissioner.
â€œThere is something I donâ€™t understand about the 1983 incident. How could four prominent politicians decide to run away in one small car?â€ Jean-Philippe wondered.
â€œThey were murdered. The murderers confessed to that effect. The Nation newspaper, the High Court library in Blantyre have copies of the confession?â€ I said.
â€œAnd why were the accused acquitted?â€
â€œThe prosecution failed to prove a case of conspiracy to murder,â€ I said.
â€œThe prosecution did not have enough evidence because the people who were alleged to have issued orders to kill were already dead.â€
â€œCould that also explain why the Presidential Commission of Inquiry into the July 20 2011 mass murders has failed to find who gave orders to shoot and kill the protesters?â€
As we approached Lirangwi, my phone beeped to announce an incoming message. I ignored it but Jean-Philippe insisted that I read it. So, we drove to Green Farm Village near Lirangwi.
Jean-Philippe bought two soft drinks. As we drank, I read the most recent message.
â€œThe President goes to Mzuzu to lay wreaths on the tombs of the 20 July 2012 martyrs. Strangely, some youths of that city want to march on the same day to demand her immediate resignation and that of the Speaker of Parliamentâ€.
â€œWhose agenda are they serving?â€ Jean-PhilippeÂ asked.
â€œMzuzu youths are newsmakers. Only last week a number of youths who had just finished writing their Malawi School Certificate of Education examinations met in the same city to welcome themselves into the world. They drank and danced all night. Some thugs joined in, stole some luggage while some girls were raped repeatedly all night. Some girls were even involved in that recent dramatic car accident in Mzuzu.â€
â€œHow come the mainstream media did not write about the event?â€