I left work 30 minutes before closing time today so I could line up for the commodity that, for over two solid years now, has eluded motorists, grain millers operating in my friend Godfrey’s to-be-electrified-after-2014 home village and everyone that it almost seems golden – fuel. I have been prudent enough with the last supply that I was so fortunate to have accessed a little over three weeks ago – walking to the grocery store whenever I can (good for my exercise) and cutting down on non-essential travel. Granted, this behavior change has bought me some days but it was only a matter of time before the orange light popped up again.

Nobody wants to spend their evening waiting for what should be a basic commodity. No mother deserves to lose their life and that of their unborn child because the ambulance that should have taken them to the major hospital to treat a complication is grounded due to a lack of fuel. In this 21st century, my 85 year old grandmother should never have to draw out her labor-intensive stone-age tools to prepare maize flour for her next meal. Unfortunately, that’s what is happening every day in Malawi. It is very unacceptable.

But then Malawians are a patient lot. I wonder how my Kenyan friend and his Kikuyu kinsmen would react if they were faced with the same hardships. Not that Malawians should take machetes and rise against the authorities. It’s about demanding of authorities what is rightfully theirs. The president has made it clear the current problems will be fixed when he is out of office, in 2014. That’s ONLY two more years to go…

PS: after three hours, I’m still on the line waiting to get a little gold…and if i succeed (the gas station doesn’t close because it is very late or the supply does not run out), I will get 15 liters because there is not enough for everyone. That should be enough to run around for three days, and who knows what will happen thereafter.