In the recent past, there has been a new dimension added to politics—inclusiveness. Politics is now as liberal as it has never been imagined before as to include almost anything, thanks to modern philosophies of democracy.
Among others, modern politics’ inclusive nature has, within its core, the empowerment of the youth through their earliest exposure to hardcore politicking. This is partly in response to the fact that progress in the 21st century demands active and full youth involvement and partly due to the fact that life expectancy has drastically dropped thus leaving the elderly with no option but to involve the youth.
Given the above therefore, it should be little wonder that youthful Barack Obama joined politics in America after catching wind of the youth-and-politics discourse. Locally, we have several young faces in politics—Chris Daza and his I-will-unseat-JZU cries, Kamuzu Chibambo and his renegotiate-Paradin-deal pronouncements, and most prominently, Atupele Muluzi—to whom now the attention turns—and his New Agenda for Change.
The young Muluzi has the tongues of political heavyweights wagging. Arguably, the Peoples Party (PP) seems to be the known aggrieved political party by Atupele’s popularity if media reports are any evidence.
But, politically speaking, it seems clear to the author (and it indeed is) and perhaps to many more, that the PP and all other parties sharing PP sentiments about Atupele are only making a mountain out of a molehill. That, in pure politics terms, there is literally nothing to fear Atupele for as the lad is politically immature.
Remember, Atupele is the young politician in the regretful days of the late Bingu wa Mutharika who came and started hot on the Malawi political scene like no other. The young Muluzi spoke, breathed, and lived New Agenda for Change. In fact, if there was anyone in Malawi whose blood was national progressive and participative democracy, such one was Atupele.
Then came the ministerial position. What did Malawians hear? It is documented that the young Muluzi went the whole hog announcing to the nation that his New Agenda for Change was not for him to become president but rather to develop Malawi. He left the agenda to die a natural death arguing that fate had taken care of the situation with the ascendancy of the then Vice President Joyce Banda to the presidency.
If Atupele was politically mature enough, he would not dump his agenda that immaturely. He would have known that strategic planning and progressive approach to handling situations is what defines mature politicians.
He would have known that setbacks and pulling of strings are a constant reality, if not the only real things, in politics. Expectedly, he would have therefore excused himself from making the agenda-for-change-not-for-presidency-but-change statements. He would have found a more fitting reason for the suspension of his New Agenda for Change. But he never did. And he missed the opportunity.
As if that is not enough, Atupele Muluzi is again on record to have resigned from his ministerial post because he could not stomach the insults from the Orange camp. Serious? Horrible as it may be, if ever there is one thing that can be singled out in Malawi politics is insults. And here we saw Atupele Muluzi, a whole cabinet minister, resigning because of insults…what an insult!
Perhaps, and this simply is “perhaps”, he wants to go into the annals of Malawi history as the first sitting cabinet minister to resign because of insults.
It is therefore doubtful if the young Muluzi can effectively run the taxing government business if can fail to move on with a simple senseless insult. You may wish to know that it is elsewhere argued that government is not for the faint-hearted. The author asks you, “Isn’t insults-induced resignation a sign of faint-heartedness?” And now the biggest blow of all, is it not Bakili Muluzi (correction welcome), the young Muluzi’s father, who remarked: “gaffment isi serious bisiness”.
However, the lad cannot be ignored completely as he has his surname selling him like hot cakes and his youthful age making inroads in the majority youth population. It is upon his selling surname and young age that the author quickens to warn that leaving his politicking unattended to is at owner’s political risk.
Accepted, Atupele is mature enough to be president if by mature it is meant, constitutionally, to be of 35 years of age. But politically, the lad is immature…and thanks to his surname for buying him popularity and his youthful age for making him a darling to the youth. And should he win in 2014, these two would be the magic wands.