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Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Is it true that only 2 percent of Malawians have Electricity

















Is the bee in my bonnet there because the boy who harnessed the wind had his own story written by someone from the country where people know everything? Or is it my my need to verify facts that bothers me? Either way, I hereby vow that if any story needs to be written about my own life, I have enough ink to write it on my own, with my own life experiences and be judged on my own condescending habits towards reality if there shall be any. 'A society which is unable to portray itself according to its own self understanding will inevitably suffer misinterpretation by others (Mugambi). I wonder why a blog and a book for my brother so bright, has to be written/taken over by someone else.

Really, is it about the funding? then Nyasa times is right in the title of one of it's news stories, 'Africa politically independent, Economically Colonised'. From this vantage point, indeed, many of us suppose it's wonderful when foreign influences do things on our behalf but it's like the giving someone fish for life story. Remember though, Ayise, ukazapanga zako, chonde uzafulumuke mkhwapa mwa munthu ameneyi and determine your own destiny. We are very proud of you and appreciate your brains, just make sure to remember kuti m'mene umayamba, it was your hard work, let your hard work sustain you. Ena they come and go koma iweyo have a vision for your own life. Your future is bright!

With all humility let us recognise that, 'Africans must think for themselves. Though they do not need to re-invent the wheel (social or industrial), they may yet invent new uses for it, or discover new ways of making it'- (like you have)

7 comments:

Acacia said...

excellent.
there was another example of a madonna story in the british press saying that she built the first tarmac road in the country.
there seems to be little or no verification of these facts and figures.. which construct malawi's international image.
surely all the urban population of malawi have electricity and that must be more than 2%.
i like your skepticism.

Thandi Soko said...

eh, my dear! reality in Malawi has so many facets i just get upset when people stress some aspects, colour them up and use them for their own ends. as the RSA president says, 'Awulethu Mshini wami! (hope u know what that means)

M Kasamale said...

Very well put and ditto on appreciation of your skepticism, Keep catching them out and posting your thoughts.

M

Anonymous said...

so whats the correct percentage?

Thandi Soko said...

Maybe it's time I called ESCOM. tally their monthly bills with their numbers of actually registerd customers and work it out with the MW population (osayiwalatu okuba magetsi aja!!)and then figure it out from there. It will be a long process....might be worth it, nie?

Anonymous said...

Electrification is about 8%. Actually people have done both micro hydros and wind generastors in malawi before,. It is all about who controls the market of information.
Greshom Sichinga

Thandi Soko said...

...to make the point clear, all I'm pointing out is: a Malawian would have phrased it differently. E.G. if the so-called 2% is say, 300,000 people; one would focus on the value of the innovation and say (whether in Chichewa or not, emphasis is on core meaning here and not grammar): 'Given that only 300,000 of our total population has access to household electricity; and that my own family is not in that number, I saw a need to come up with an innovationt that would help solve this ...
Note the emphasis in the colonial- type inferred comparison: 'Only 2 per cent of Malawians.....' (I should mention that I have worked for charity NGO's in the past, fascinating how stats. can be, shall I say, manipulated to suit purpose of fund-raiser, the stats. may be true but whose interests do they REALLY serve?