This Parliament will be exciting indeed.
First, congratulations for my good friend, Juliana Lunguzi. It was risky to voluntarily walk out on an international job for your passion to serve your folks in Mua. We know you did not make this decision for fun.
And, hey, Jesse Kabwila, too, is going to Parliament. My! I cannot imagine the academic freedom goddess face-to-face with Patricia Kaliati. These are two women with different backgrounds but united by acerbic tongues. I cannot wait to watch the contest across the floor.
Oh, yeah, finally Harry Mkandawire has bought a ticket to Parliament; the guy has been trying and trying and failing and failing. I am happy for him, trust me.
As I am also happy for Kamlepo Kalua. Man, you cannot write a book about the history of multiparty politics in Malawi without the name of ‘Tcheee, Mwana Tchee!’ Too bad he will be on opposition benches but, hey, Kamlepo has never been material for the ruling side. He is at home in opposition.
The muckraker is sad, though, for his friends – two kakas Cassim and Fahad in Nkhotakota and BJ in Mulanje; the odds were against them but they could have added value to this Parliament.
But while kakas and BJ can only wait for five years to try again, I am devastated my friend Godfrey Kamanya will not have a second chance. I remember one night joking with him and Ulemu Chilapondwa at a pub in Blantyre that all MCP turn-coats – Kamanya, Chilapondwa, Abel Kayembe and even Ama’s anointed deputy Sosten Gwengwe – would not return to Parliament.
Godfrey and Ulemu challenged me but I never envisioned Godfrey would take the loss so badly that he could kill himself. I wish I was there to tell him sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. He still had the whole life ahead of him. Sad.
Anyway, there are also some faces I will miss in this Parliament, Goodall Gondwe, Nicholas Dausi and Ken Lipenga are not going back to the august House, so is Henry Dama Phoya.
But at least my musician friends Allan Ngumuya and Lucius Banda may mesmerise us in the august House, Soldier with his red ‘Kanda Bongoman’ suits again. (I joked with him about this; he said: ‘Not this time!’) And, of course, my good friend David Bisnowatty has defied the odds to become Malawi’s first Jewish MP. That’s a record! And, in Rumphi, a Dutch philanthropist Jacqueline Kouwenhoven is also going to Parliament.
Wow! It does not get better than this!