The past few weeks have been a mixed bag of joy and sadness. Joy because it was still festive period and sad in that many lost lives through road accidents. But one sad moment that gripped the country was the brutal killing of a man with albinism, Yasin Phiri (RIP) of Kande, Nkhata Bay.
Yasin Phiri died a painful death at the hands of his killers who believed they will become overnight billionaires using body parts of people with albinism.
This is one of the other several incidences that have happened in the past. The country has been angry with such news and was angered, yet, again when news of Yasin Phiri’s death broke.
Malawians are very angry people, but they just don’t get angry enough. All the anger that was on social media, if it were directed elsewhere, not in virtual space, but on the ground, this country would have put the barbaric practice of killing people with albinism to an end.
If Malawians were angry enough, they would have pressed hard on the Malawi Police to do a thorough job of investigating these “albino markets” where the body parts are sold as claimed by those hunting people with albinism as if they were animals.
I have never been satisfied with the scrappy job that the police have done so far. It takes time to apprehend the culprits and when they do, they tend to just focus on that one suspect and not necessarily following the trail. And then the court cases are often inconclusive.
This is the trend with so many other cases. They can afford to take their time because they know they are under no pressure from the public. The anger ends with a Facebook or Twitter update. Nothing happens afterwards.
I like social media because it gives people a platform where they can express themselves and also gives one an idea of what the public mood is. But a Facebook post, a tweet or a viral WhatsApp message, does not translate into change. Unless you put the phone down, switch off your computer and take action, nothing will change.
Albino killings have been going for quite some time and this vice will go on as long as you Malawians keep on directing your anger at your computer screens.
Yes, you have every right to post angry posts on social media but, for once can you take action? Log off the internet and step into the real world and speak against the ills in your society. Do away with the fake anger that only starts and ends on social media. There is a whole world outside social media that needs someone like you to make it better.