The Malawian HIV epidemic plays a critical role in the country’s low life expectancy of just 57 years for men and 60 for women according to World Health Organization (WHO), Malawi country statistics (2018). The persona in the poem was saying this when Malawi had less than a one hundred thousand people living with HIV. This explains that the pandemic has spread rapidly. However, Mlauli saw it all and warned.
“This we will pass onto our offspring
out of love for each other’s partners
until we learn to stop illicit sex”
The warning that Mlauli gave is very realistic because HIV is spread through sexual intercourse hence the warning that “until we learn to stop illicit sex”. Today in Malawi, premarital sex has been reinforced. Organisations have lost track on how to make the society HIV-free.
Instead of encouraging people to avoid illicit sex they are busy encouraging the youth to use condoms. Since many have been convinced to have illicit sex provided they use a condom, what many have forgotten is the possibility of people not using the condoms. What could have been great is to encourage the youth to abstain from sex and they could have understood the value of sex before marriage.
However, now the youth has been made to believe that sex can be done anyhow provided you use a condom, hence HIV is spreading.
What we have to be sure of is the fact that illicit sex is happening, but we are not sure if the youth are using condoms. But Mlauli warned that if we fail to stop this then we should be assured that HIV/AIDS will soon wipe out all of us. Mlauli foreshadowed this and it is happening hence Chimombo is in line with Ngugi’s definition of a writer. HIV is spreading faster and people are dying because of this global disease.
The accuracy of the prophecies by Mlauli speaks volumes of his powers. He was a prophet of reality. Mlauli saw the death of people because of wars and genetic manipulation of food. In Malawi the physical war is not yet there, but the psychological war is observed. Malawians grow green with envy with the progress of their fellow Malawian. They create stories about your progress trying to prove that you do not deserve to excel. However, some people have died in conflicts in Malawi in 2019. For example, a police man was stoned to death at Msundwe in Lilongwe during the post electoral demonstrations. Furthermore, a tribal fight in Nkhata Bay saw four people dying because of land disputes.
Moreover, people are dying in Malawi because of disease caused by genetic manipulated food. People are eating chickens that grow in six weeks simply because they are modified. This is one among many examples of how food is being poisoned by some who are trying to be rich. These foods are causing cancer and other diseases and this is killing many people in Malawi. While this is the case, Mlauli claimed the population will still increase. Currently Malawi has 18 million people. A population and resources analyst says it’s bad since it will create pressure on the minimal resources that Malawi has.
“we will still multiply at a rapid pace
huts will be emptied because of poverty,
concrete houses be filled by the unemployed,
and pavements made impassable by vendors”.
Tell us: Do you agree with the poet in the above lines?