Monday, April 9, 2012

Peace in Malawi

Within the past few days Malawi has successfully transitioned leadership of the president. The former President Bingu wa Mutharika died while in office (literally). The constitution provides for the Vice President to resume power, Joyce Banda. This transition went as perfectly as if such an event happened in Czech Republic.
Joyce Banda has become the first woman leader of a Sub-Saharan country. Further to that she is a strong advocate for human rights, which is a serious concern for any country. This is all very new and the hope for peace to remain is strong in her voice. That strength can be felt even in the news clip above. This success of peace is one to celebrate. However the pull of power is great and Joyce Banda has enemies.
 When you are embroiled in chaos the urge towards hatred and destruction is a strong pull. On an individual level you may be having a dispute with someone. You fight to ensure your stance over the others. For the most part the entire reason you fight is because your ego has taken a hit and you need to secure your confidence/authority over another. Rarely is the fight about anything that made the escalation to violence warranted. It is these moments of life that we need to be aware of, acknowledged and countered peacefully.
In Malawi there is a strong pull for peace to remain with the knowledge that chaos is near. That chaos needs to be kept in mind so that you know where the fight is waging from. At this point in Malawi, those that wish to take power can be succumbed through talks.
From all reports Joyce Banda is a person that can be trusted.  If you have read other postings of mine you will know that a person who is trusted to be peaceful can be a liability. This trust is seen as a weakness to others that are quick to use violence. I understand the use of violence and Joyce Banda may have to use violence to eliminate those that choose to destroy the peace within Malawi. This is the reality of life. It is clear that Joyce Banda does not want violence, however her enemies may. Now we must ask what are her options to ensure peace remains in Malawi?
For the coming years, Malawi is a case study of peace in Africa. We have the opportunity to observe a rare moment. We can observe how she works to build upon her trust, how she builds the peace to such a degree that no one would have a need to destroy it. For me this is a moment to learn about peace as Joyce Banda is walking into unknown territory.

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