Sunday, March 22, 2009

Internet, Elections in Malawi.

Recently the founder of the World Wide Web (WWW) or simple the web, Sir Tim Berners-Lee, said the future of the internet lies in the mobile phone especially in poor nations. In a BBC Online interview
( Sir Tim is quoted as saying: "In developing countries it's going to be exciting because that is the only way that a lot of people will actually get to see the internet at all."
This is true to some extent looking at current trends in Malawi. The two cellular telephone companies, Zain and TNM are providing internet connection to phones that have web browsers. This is quite a big leap in terms of internet access in the country because the cost of handsets is slumping following removal of tax on the gadgets. Also more people are getting active on the web by using facebook and other social networking sites and mobile phones are proving handy. The cost of browsing using cellular telephones, I'm told, is quite low.

My 82-year old granny has never seen the internet although she makes jokes about sending to me some local Malawian foodstuffs through the web! I'm told she danced and sang after seeing a phone with a browser belonging to my mother. Now the matriarch will see what it means to be online! All that right in the village.

On the political front, former president Bakili Muluzi has been barred from contesting in the May 2009 elections because the Malawi constitution prohibits him. It is interesting that Muluzi is adamant that he will stand in the polls. I hope senior officials in his party see ahead and realise the futility of such words and quickly make a move to save their election chances!
Otherwise I trust God to remain faithful as I strive with academic endevours and contemplate life after finishing this course.


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