MY chief is a typical old bloke who dispenses justice by old dictates: you do not report a pregnancy and you have a still-birth, he will not open the graveyard gates for you unless you pay five chickens! You impregnate somebody's daughter and refuse responsibility; you are fined a billy-goat! You drink yourself stupid and sing 'Mangerere' at the graveyard you are tied to a tree the entire funeral service!
Such are his traditionally-inherited roles. He, like all chiefs around the country, is not elected; he derived his powers from birth lineage. He isn’t a superhuman, he doesn’t have to be; to be a chief - just like his colleagues countrywide - he just has to be borne into the right family at the right time.
Now you bundle these good folks to State House, ply them with chip gin and you want them to start spurring with Mme. Christine Lagarde of the IMF on devaluation of the kwacha? C'mon, good people, don’t be so callous, there are a number of chiefs who went beyond A.E.I.O.U in school but most of them are humble villagers who use thumb-print to get their state-funded honorarium. How do they begin to know the politics, the intricacies, let alone the economics of devaluation of a currency?
But here they were, paraded one after another on state airwaves to make a fool of themselves - and of whoever sent them there - talking against the devaluation of the good old kwacha.Really? Are we that desperate that we have played all our aces and both our jokers that we are left with nothing against the IMF but chiefs who think devaluation is nothing more than cutting our paper money in half?
Chiefs are nice fellas; they are a fountain of wisdom but please spare them the rigmarole of monitory policies. They have no clue how devaluation of one per cent of one per cent of a Yen or a Yuan is all about. Discuss with them why some road must be named after you or why there is nobody in the whole country that can fit your shoes after you retire in 2014 but your brother...making them rant nonsensicals about devaluation of the kwacha is nothing but abuse of their ignorance.