Malawi's president is allergic to her country's papers

BENJA: What a dressing down! But is the president serious that she doesn't like the sight of our local newspapers?

DANISO: Maybe but then how does she know that they are unkind to her? That her White House sojourn didn't make it to the front pages? Telepathy? Maybe the good prophet TBJ prophesies the stories and phones to brief her.

BENJA: Come on! For all we know, she could be getting press briefings.

DANISO: Maybe, maybe not. By the way, I think the public needn't have seen some of the dirty laundry she brought out. I was also very surprised by her comment about MBC TV. How can she make such a sweeping statement about it being open when, according to her, she only watched it once?

DANISO: MBC TV open? Does she know what she's saying? She should watch it for a whole day and see how much PP fare viewers are forced to watch. And while she's at it, let her browse the Malawi News Agency website as well.

BENJA: MANA is something else. If your only source of news was MANA, you would think there's no opposition in Malawi, that opposition parties aren't holding conventions, that they aren't going round on incessant whistle stop tours, that PP and UDF thugs didn't slug it out in Zomba, that everything in Malawi is going as smooth as Swiss clockwork.

DANISO: I think like every Malawian leader before her, Her Excellency Her Excellency is addicted to praise singing. Anything else is anathema to her.

BENJA: All the more reason she should be watching MBC TV.

DANISO: I think she doesn't realise praise singing gives her a false sense of achievement, a skewed perception of her people's feelings. These she can only genuinely gauge if she were being given press briefings.

BENJA: She also ought to be paying a little more attention to her Facebook page. As far as the world is concerned, it's the president's page.

DANISO: Let's not go there. Please.

: Ok. Fine. Let's talk football then. What conclusions have you drawn from the recent Champions League earth shuttering results?

: I think the two-team Spanish League was lulled into a false sense of superiority. They didn't realise that football has since migrate north and been infused with ruthless German efficiency.

BENJA: 4-0, 4-1. Who would've thought? I think bookies have made a killing because nobody could've seen those scores coming.

DANISO: Nobody.

Celebrating a predecessor's death

DANISO: Now that PP has danced and celebrated on Bingu's grave, what next?

BENJA: It's a shame really. A very mean thing to do.

DANISO: Uncouth. Crass. Cheap. It's like a son who instead of commemorating his father's death, chooses to celebrate the wealth he was willed as result of the death.

BENJA: I sometimes wonder whether JB has advisers.

: I doubt it, at least not ones who mean her well. If she had, do you think she would've been abusing government machinery to be harassing David's mother?

BENJA: You mean Madonna? I agree. How can she be so mean spirited, a practicing Christian?

: Whatever happened to 'Love thy neighbour'? Especially a neighbour who's helping you in her own little way?

BENJA: Well, it's been a funny few days. First off the block was DPP lauding Bingu as the best president Malawi has ever had.

DANISO: I think it's in our genes to sanitise the characters of the dead, to gloss over their flaws no matter how tarred. No wonder we call a dead body a chief, even if it's that of a village idiot.

BENJA: No wonder employees fall over themselves praising departed colleagues "who the employer will have  great problems replacing, if at all." You've to wonder.

DANISO: So too Bingu. In the year since, we've already forgotten his long list of flaws. The most nepotistic president ever, one who barely tolerated people from certain tribes and took great pleasure in publicly insulting some of them.

BENJA: We've forgotten that the economic mess Malawi is going through today started during his second term when the Kwacha was being artificially propped up. We've totally forgotten that were he still alive today, Malawi would be in a far worse position than it is now.

DANISO: We can't even remember the arson attacks against critics, the arrests, even a murder, his unexplained wealth when not long before he was rescued by his predecessor, he used to be both a driver and a conductor for his own minibus, a man who, according to a man who used to be his cook, would budget for and buy only two chickens a month.

BENJA: I suppose his people have all the right to love him, after all many of them were uplifted along with him. But to foist the second term Bingu on all of us as Malawi's best president, is an insult. An insult to the SMEs whose businesses had to shutdown in the face of an all conquering business juggernaut from his tribe who had to

DANISO: Do you remember the poor orphans whose land was grabbed? Malawi's best president? My foot! Let me have a Green. I'm boiling inside just at the memory of him.