Yesterday we saw two important victories for democracy worldwide. We should take note, and emulate those good traits of democracy here in Malawi.
In Romania government had decided to legalise a number of forms of corruption, ostensibly as a measure to ease congestion in prisons. Over the past years more than 1600 government workers and politicians had been convicted of corruption. This both shows the problem is real and that the fight against it is real. Now releasing many of these would not make a real dent in the much larger prison population, but it would promote corruption. The Romanian population decided this was not a good idea, and for five days and nights there were mass demonstrations all over the country. The government remembered how mass demonstrations ousted (and killed) the dictator Ceausescu, and they gave in to the populations demands. Compare this to the latest mass demonstrations in Malawi on 20 July 2011: two days of demonstrations and the government had twenty unarmed demonstrators shot to death by the police. And of course in Malawi none of the demands were granted. We should take example from the Romanians, both the tenacity of the demonstrators and the democratic mind of the government.
The other victory for democracy was in USA, where the unconstitutional presidential order was stopped by the judiciary. Democracy is not possible without rule of law, and a judiciary that protects the weak (in this case refugees and other travelers from the countries singled out in the executive order) from the strong (in this case a super rich president). Again, we need a strong judiciary that upholds the constitutional rights of everyone, without regard for their status in society.
Two cases that give hope in a world in turmoil. Lets follow their examples.