Saturday, June 18, 2011


Warning: This is not a dirge.
By Namakando Nalikando-Sinyama

The news of JTF’s (How is that for an anagram?) passing has been received by many with a touch of disbelief, shock, surprise, joy (come on, do not be so shocked now, yes, joy!) etc. I will not waste your time by heaping my personal feelings about the whole thing on you. Forgive me for my bluntness, honesty and for being true to my feelings. All I know is I do have a strange over powering sense of well–being, as to whether or not it is due to this incident or not I have no idea. All I know is my eyes have never been dryer; the incident may have even served as a desiccant actually. You may call me heartless, uncivil, un African, weird, uncultured, evil, cruel and what not, for what it is worth, do know this, I do not give it a rat’s ass what you think of me. Who has a direct line to Guinness I may need to get hold of them to reserve an entry as given this country’s and Africa’s obsession with Septuagenarian and Octogenarian leaders we may be infamously making it into their book of world records for losing the most leaders serving or retired in the shortest time frame. Are you up for a mini prophecy from yours truly? Here goes, “Let our eyes be cast down south, as The West may soon celebrate at the passing of an icon, as they clamour to re-take the terra firma in ‘a big stone house’! Prophet of doom you call me? Watch this space! The point am making not being such an expert in presidential deaths and all, what I need are answers to a number of troubling questions.

1. Will Chinyama be the lone pole bearer? Ok this is a bit cruel I take it back!
2. Does this mean our tax payer’s money is gone for good or it was secured some- how?
3. Do we finally get our money back and from whom?
4. How many will genuinely moan this death?
5. How many are quietly not so saddened?
6. How many liked him for the brown envelops?
7. How many envied his political manoeuvres good or bad?
8. How many liked him for his eloquent speeches?
9. How many liked him for his down to earth demeanour and his ability to reach out and connect with the lowly in society?
10. How many liked him because they benefitted from his housing empowerment exercise? We did as family actually mum will shed some tears, I think.
11. Does this mean we have been spared that 4 billion kwacha stately mansion for former Presidents that was supposed to be built for him?
12. What is the implication of his passing on the Zambian political land scape vis-a-vis the coming elections?
13. So will his body be taken round the country as well?
14. Will a mausoleum be built for him as well and where?
15. How many marvelled at his audacity of banking personal money in a government account and getting away with it?
16. How many still wonder why many Zambians who have committed lesser crimes have been jailed and are still serving but some so easily wiggle out of a sticky patch and walk free?
17. Has anyone heard from my brother JV, I do miss him so?
18. How many will seek to make political capital from his death?
19. Do they realise how much of a dangerous tight rope it is to mishandle his passing?
20. How should he be properly moaned? Look, it is tricky whichever way you look at it, it is a classic case of damned if you do and damned if you do not?

What must never ever be forgotten however, is this that the man held public office and did what he had to do good or bad but his contribution will forever be indelible and this country owes him some measure of gratitude. We conveniently bent our backs and he gladly rode on us,we cannot blame him much really especially not in his death. We are where we are today because he once lived, he did his duty and he drove us where we are as a country.
So then, how have The Greeks visited us you ask? What we read in Greek Mythology is this that, NEMESIS was the goddess of indignation against, and retribution for, evil deeds and undeserved good fortune. She was a personification of the resentment aroused in men by those who committed crimes with apparent impunity, or who had inordinate good fortune.
Nemesis directed human affairs in such a way as to maintain equilibrium. Her name means she who distributes or deals out. Happiness and unhappiness were measured out by her, care being taken that happiness was not too frequent or too excessive. If this happened, Nemesis could bring about losses and suffering. As one who checked extravagant favours by Tykhe (Fortune), Nemesis was regarded as an avenging or punishing divinity. (Source:

To the grieving family, the sorrow you feel is shared by the country.


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