The hate that hate produced: the John Chilembwe story

1915: a middle-aged man in his mid-forties stands amongst a group of his loyal followers. They are about 200. Perhaps, it is a chilly rainy night with the silence of a graveyard surrounding the church.

“The white man has sat on us for so long,” declares the tall man with obviously a mild temper. “We need to do something, we need to act. We must send him packing from our land.”

Possibly, the men listening to him shake their heads in unison. Others are yet to comprehend what is driving the man of God in front of them for they have known him as a quiet man for a long time.

Thus, the story of John Chilembwe’s rebellion begins, in the January of 1915, years long before the wind of freedom and change begins to sweep in the 1960s. Many years before the bells of freedom begin to ring on the African continent.

John Chilembwe, writes Robert I. Rotberg in a 2005 Harvard Magazine article, was not a radical man such that nobody could expect him to stage a rebellion. He appeared, like most Africans then, satisfied and contented with the little he got from the white masters. After all, being a Christian minister meant he was better treated than the Africans working on the plantations.

However, prior to the 1915 uprising, Chilembwe had shown signs of a growing discontent with the treatment of Africans on the hands of white settlers. A lot of factors would later emerge as the causes of his anger and consequent hatred for the whites. Nevertheless, his acquaintance with Joseph Booth – a radical missionary who greatly opposed segregation and preached equality for all races – played a great role in shaping Chilembwe.

In 1897, Booth travelled with his servant who had showed a keen interest in learning reading and writing, Chilembwe, to America. In the same year, Chilembwe was enrolled at the Virginia Theological College in America where he finished off in 1900 and came back to Nyasaland (Now Malawi) and established his Providence Industrial Mission (PIM) at Mbombwe in Chiradzulu.

At Virginia Theological College, Chilembwe came into contact with the teachings, biographies and stories of slave trade abolitionists and other pan-Africanists such as Marcus Garvey, Booker T. Washington and John Brown. Such stories appear to have silently and secretly inspired Chilembwe though he managed to conceal that inspiration.

For all intents, at his PIM church Chilembwe was not the radical preacher who – on every Sunday – was on the pulpit denouncing the white man or labeling names. Chilembwe was that Pastor who implored his flock to live a life of self-reliance. His teachings mainly focused on getting people away from such immoral practices as beer drinking, fornication among others and then develop a hardworking spirit. He wanted, in other words, his Christians to practice Christianity as it is and live a life that would astound the white man for it was a common belief that the African was not a capable individual.

True to this, Chilembwe’s attire modeled that of the Britons resident in Malawi then. He was usually spotted in a three-piece suit with a bow tie, a code of dressing that even intimidated the plantation owners in whose mind the African was no lesser no more than a half human being or worse than that.

Chilembwe’s moderate preaching, however, was not to live for long. In less than two decades, Chilembwe’s approach and perception to issues had changed and, in a way, greatly altered. Chilembwe, the revered peaceful figure amongst his followers, increasingly became angry and the message changed in his sermons – this was prior to the rebellion in 1915.

One of the reasons underlying Chilembwe’s change, it is said, was the conscription of African men to fight against the Germans in Tanganyika (modern day Tanzania) in the First World War. To this effect, Chilembwe wrote a letter that was published in the press denouncing the practice of taking African men ‘to fight in wars so that they die and leave behind poor widows and orphans’. He took the same message to the pulpit. Such a daring attempt brought him into a conflict with one of the plantation owners, William Jervis Livingstone who is believed to have been a cousin to Dr. David Livingstone.

Chilembwe’s resentment was not fomented by one factor only. A drought in 1913 in Mozambique had seen Africans flocking from the Portuguese colony then to Nyasaland where Chiradzulu, the place that had Chilembwe’s PIM, was one of the areas hard hit. The movement of the Mozambicans into Nyasaland meant that there was to be an increase in the pressure on land. However, there was a lot of land on the plantations and, wishfully then, Chilembwe thought the plantation owners would leave some land to the immigrants.

Quite to the dismay of Chilembwe, Livingstone did not allow the Mozambicans into his vast plantation. He let them scramble with Africans, especially members of Chilembwe church, for the little land they had. This kind of racism coupled with the exploitation that was being practiced on the plantations for all the laborers at the hands of Livingstone created a deep hatred in Chilembwe not only for Livingstone but all the whites in Nyasaland.

Thus, the genesis of his unnerving messages to the white man: denouncing him and making pronouncements on him that were anything but respectful. They were such sermons that moved Livingstone to act: under the guise of being a landlord, he saw to it that Chilembwe’s PIM churches and schools were burned down for they stood on ‘his’ land.

The burning down of his institutions coupled with his growing indignation for the white man and the sad events in his life that included the death of his only daughter, Emma, and his worsening health condition as he was asthmatic, left Chilembwe with a little choice outside fighting the white man. Somehow, still more, Chilembwe knew that his efforts were not going to achieve success then.

“Let us strike a blow and then die, for our blood will surely mean something at last,” record has it that Chilembwe said before executing his plans. The plans that after so many days of planning and agreeing with his followers – intensely in the wet month of January in 1915 – finally came into reality on January 23 the same year.

On the said date, Chilembwe’s followers are believed to have attacked in the cover of the night at white settlers living near. On top of the list was William Jervis Livingstone whom they stabbed to death and later beheaded before carrying the head with them to Chilembwe’s church. Three settlers were killed that night, all men. On Chilembwe’s instructions, all children and women were spared, done no any kind of physical harm.

In the course of that attack, houses were burned down as other Africans loyal to their white masters were either harmed or downright killed.

The following day, an attack at the armory store in the commercial city of Blantyre was well defeated by the whites where some of Chilembwe’s followers were apprehended and consequently, killed with their bodies left for public view to deter other Africans. Only three guns and a few rounds of ammunition were sourced from the store.

It is said that the uprising had initially been planned to spread to some other parts of Nyasaland but due to communication problems it had failed. In Ntcheu it is alleged that there also was a small dramatic uprising though it had no major effect.

After the uprising, it is believed, Chilembwe discovered that his mission had not been that successful and thus told his men to disperse from the mission premises before the white man attacked.

In a strange fashion, so writes Rotberg, an unarmed Chilembwe left for Mozambique wearing a dark blue coat, a stripped pajama jacket over a colored shirt, and gray flannel trousers. It is argued that he was pursued by British soldiers who cornered him and shot him dead on February 3, 1915 before he had crossed over into Mozambique. Skeptics, however, challenge that Chilembwe was never killed by the Britons otherwise they could have treated him the Jervis Livingstone way: behead him, carry his head as a trophy and place it at some visible place for all eyes to see – after all, it is said that there was a price placed on his head.

That then, ends the story of John Chilembwe, the son of a Yao father and a Nyanja mother. The man who was born in 1871 and lived through a certain kind of hatred preached by white settlers who later received another amount of hatred themselves from Chilembwe.    


MCP minus John Tembo equals suicide

NELSON Mandela is a great. Not only in South Africa, not only in Africa but in the entire world. His name has always been associated with statesmanship, his face with greatness, his words with maturity, his voice with leadership, and his age with wisdom.

Little wonder then that one writer, Ephraim Nyondo, used him as a beacon of some sort in his article ‘Can MCP progress without Tembo?’ in which he argued, convincingly, that MCP can, nay will, progress without Tembo. 

He posed Mandela in total contrast to his neighbor and age mate Robert Gabriel Mugabe who, for thirty years plus, has sat at the helm of Zimbabwe; now, a sad story of some sort. A contradiction of her own past, Zimbabwe is. And in contrasting, he likened. It was a likening of two likes: John Zenus Ungapake Tembo and Robert Gabriel Mugabe, Comrade. They were being likened just as their ‘entities’ – Malawi Congress Party (MCP) and Zimbabwe, respectively – were.

The two share something, and in sharing something, the two seem equal. The two politicians, if politicians, and entities, if entities that is, are twins. Identical twins if not Siamese.

Tembo and Mugabe, twins

Right, very right. There is a thin line, if it does exist, between the two. The two belong to the same conditions. Mugabe is believed, by many of course, to be the one behind Zimbabwe’s woes: a poor economy, a faltering democracy and a nauseating human rights record on the list of many unpleasant things.

And Tembo too has many voicing his resignation from politics for what they term MCP’s woes: dwindling support as evidenced by the drop in the number of MPs, failure to win the presidency in the two elections he has been at the helm, leadership wrangles and a lot more problems that seem to speak volumes of MCP’s pending death.

But, Mugabe and Tembo are just victims. Victims of the media, victims of circumstances. The idea to relocate land to the black population in Zimbabwe as championed by Mugabe is not entirely bad, even if we want it to look thus. The idea to continue leading MCP as propagated by Tembo, or his allies, is also not bad though many want to portray it thus.

The problem, the biggest, is that most of us have encountered these two ideas and personalities through the media. Not any other media but that which hates them. Most, if not all of us, have encountered Mugabe through BBC, CNN, France 24, Sky News and all that western media – a kind of media that will never portray anything good about Mugabe. And that, that western representation, has filled our eyes and saturated our brains to the point that we cannot see the truth nor can we think it.

And Tembo? His story is no different from Mugabe. The now generation encountered Tembo not as a minister of finance in the Kamuzu era, nor as chair of the University council nor as even the Governor of Reserve Bank. 

Instead, the now generation has encountered him at a wrong time. A time he was filled with bitterness for votes he believe were rigged from him and thus, never gave a rest to Bingu’s government. A time he was being used by Muluzi to champion his (Muluzi’s) ideas: section 65 first and then budget. 

And, they encountered him through the wrong place, the media of Malawi Broadcasting Corporation –  an institution which every Malawian knows can never say anything good about Tembo or MCP. And that Media has defined for us how to look at and judge Tembo. No wonder then, that we all believe Tembo possesses no morality, no goodness, he is a failure and thus, he must go now. We believe that MCP will die if Tembo does not leave now. Not later but now.

But, Tembo and Mugabe possess one thing that all those calling for their resignation possess not: age. Age that, in them, gave birth to experience and experience to wisdom. Wisdom like that of the African beacon, Mandela.

Mandela’s wisdom the multitudes have missed

In building that rainbow nation, South Africa, from the tatters and ruins of apartheid, Nelson ‘Madiba’ Mandela never castigated those behind the problem of apartheid – the whites. Never. Mandela knew than anybody else that the whites, the minority, were the ones behind the problem of apartheid. The problem that made him ‘rot’ in prison for twenty-seven years.
Mandela, whom the entire world has heaped praises on for his wisdom, throughout the course of his fighting indicated that his was not a fight against the whites but apartheid. Intelligent wisdom this that many, calling for Tembo’s resignation or ‘overthrowing’, have missed.

Even after ascending to the top most post of presidency in 1994, Mandela never said a word against the whites or calling for their going. He, instead, worked with them for the building of a fair nation, a fair South Africa. And today we can all say without shame that South Africa, though lacking in terms of security, is one of the developed not only in Africa but the entire world. Thanks to Mandela wisdom. The wisdom many have missed.

And, the now generation of South Africa, in missing Mandela’s wisdom have almost plunged their nation into chaos. They have almost fanned the embers of hatred that Mandela fought hard to burry in the annals of history. They have missed, or rather ignored, the old age wisdom of Mandela and result? Catastrophe.

Not long ago, the African National Congress (ANC) embattled youth wing leader, Julius Malema, was in the news for wrong reasons. He sang, or rather liked (and still likes?) to sing, a violent song ‘Kill the Boer, kill the farmer’ a few days before the violent murder of a Boer farmer, Eugene Terre'Blanche. And, the whites believe the killing of Terre'Blanche was inspired by such singing, such racism, such hatred. 

And Malema has said it more than once that he will not stop singing the song, the hatred. He learnt it while young and he just cannot stop it. After all, he seems to believe, there is some truth in his favorite song. He is acting contrary to Mandela's wisdom and very soon than he can think, if he continues with that and gets his way to rule, South Africa will be back to chaos. Reason? It is ignoring old age wisdom. Mandela’s wisdom. 

It is not only Malema who has missed Mandela’s wisdom. There are many. Political scientists, commentators, ministers, experienced politicians and many have missed that wisdom. The wisdom that is responsible for South Africa’s prosperity. The wisdom that builds.

It is this wisdom we need if MCP is to be rebuilt. If it is to resurrect. If our democracy, as young and malnourished as it is, is to be saved. It is that wisdom that all those calling for Tembo’s removal have missed, and are still missing.

Everyone, for all those who know and accept the truth, knows that Tembo is the one behind MCP’s problems. The power struggle in the party was nothing but as a result of Tembo’s tenacious clinging to power, the dwindling number of MPs for MCP is all an outcome of Tembo’s belief that he can hold a party in one region, and all other problems that a person can point at in MCP are nothing but Tembo’s ‘children’.

But then, does that guarantee us a backing that Tembo can go and all the problems will be over?

No. Never. Not at all. Tembo can move out of MCP today but the party will never be healed. It will, as a matter of fact, be hurt a lot with Tembo’s departure now than ever. The young democracy of Malawi will be done a great injustice and fully defiled if Tembo exits the political stage, the MCP presidency, now. 

Tembo created problems, that he knows and even MCP’s politburo that refused him to quit knows, and he must rectify them now. He must guide the party out of the woods he has dragged it into. Tembo must hold the party that has been forced back to its infancy by hand now, help it stand, help it walk and let it run. Not quitting it.

But Tembo, John Tembo, belongs to the past

Yes and no. Both are correct answers, very correct. That Tembo belongs to the past is true. The past that most Malawians want to forget. He belongs to the past and has that past, to quote Ephraim Nyondo, ‘to defend for it is not really very clear’ – not to reconstruct, for the past is never reconstructed.

But also, Tembo belongs to the present, the now. Tembo is the umbilical cord linking the past to the present. He is the one holding the keys to the survival of Malawi’s oldest party, MCP, and Malawi’s frightening and frightened multiparty democracy. That is why Tembo belongs to the present and somehow, future – of course, future not reaching 2013 or thereabouts.

Tembo, with his wisdom and experience from the past, needs to guide the party. Not guiding it to its doom but boom. Tembo inherited that party in its better state and he should not leave it in its pathetic state. He needs to reorganize that party so that once again it becomes a force to reckon with not only in Dedza but the whole of Malawi.

And removing him now or forcing him into resignation is to say the least, a search for an exit. An exit of the once mighty Malawi Congress Party (MCP) from the political platform. It is an insult to the souls of all those who formed the party and even those who did shed their blood for the democracy we possess now.  

Tembo has said, time and again, that he will leave when the time comes. A good idea this. And going by MCP’s constitution, his time has not yet come. It will come in future, the near future. At least, this we know, that he is barred from contesting again on an MCP ticket as president come next elections for failing to hook the presidency seat twice unless otherwise. Then, we can lest be assured that Tembo will go someday, after renovating MCP and restoring her (MCP’s) old self.

The problem, as Tembo himself has said it, we are all in a rush. A rush for something we are not certain of. A rush to have Tembo out of office, and then? We have no idea. We are all blank. We just assure ourselves, falsely for that matter, that somebody will be found. From where? An astounding question that is and we are running away from it.

Tembo knows and rightly so that this is not a time to leave MCP. He is even justified to think so. He has said that he cannot leave the party to people who are not MCP. That is true. And he knows them. He knows those who will sell the party the very first day they are voted as president of the party, he knows those who will take it into a fake marriage the very hour they are voted into the office of MCP presidency and he even knows those who are more than prepared to kill the party the moment they are elected than they are to resurrect the party. That is why he cannot leave the party now.

Tembo said, and we all laughed, that the taskforce that was there at some point was made of power hungry individuals and frustrated souls. A few weeks later, we saw and heard it. They formed another taskforce out of the taskforce. And the two taskforces started blaming each other of being power hungry and jealous. They stopped their fight against Tembo. Result?

Tembo was proven, beyond reasonable doubt, right. What if he had succumbed to pressure and had quit; could MCP have been resurrected, could our democracy have been saved, could the power struggles have ended?

The answer is no, an absolute no. Tembo again could have been blamed if he had quit then and those unnecessary power struggles were being displayed in the ‘real’ MCP after his evacuation of office. Articles could have been written accusing his style of handing over power, of acquitting office.

And, can MCP progress without John Tembo?

Yes, it can but not now. Now, MCP and all democracy loving Malawians, need to implore and employ Mandela’s wisdom: that you use the one behind the problem for the rectification of the problem and not just an outsider.

That is the same wisdom Kamuzu Banda, the father and founder of this nation, used once for Malawi to move forward and the result was an economic prosperity for Malawi that has never been witnessed and probably, will never be witnessed.

His young ministers, just after getting independence, wanted an africanisation of all top posts in government for the mere fact that the whites, Britons, had been marginalizing Africans and they looked at that as a way of revenge. A way of punishing the creators of the problem.

Kamuzu said no. His was a slow africanisation process. He was still going to have the expatriates, the whites, the ones who were ill treating and marginalizing Malawians. Kamuzu knew that that is the only way of moving forward: incorporating the creators of the problem into the solution, not ignoring them or removing them.

And the end result? That period, from 1964 to 1977, when John Tembo was the governor of the Reserve Bank, has been dubbed as ‘the period of star performance’ in terms of economy. A period Muluzi never came close to during his ten year rule and Mutharika is yet to reach, if he will.

That wisdom is what MCP needs. Tembo must not go now or else that will be suicide for MCP, the once mighty. Tembo must stay in MCP, as president, help the party recover. Get it back on its feet and then quit after it is healed. Of course, he needs to speed up the healing process otherwise his face is not necessary on the next ballot as a presidential candidate.

All those who want MCP to recover, including the members of the task force – if their claims are genuine, must accept Tembo and work with him now for the building of the party. Ignore this and kill MCP, kill Malawi’s democracy. 

*This article was written a long time ago when the calls for Tembo to resign were ''unbearable'' but it did not see the light of print due to the political climate then.       



The six faces of Evison Matafale

The golden voice; powerful and intelligent lyrics that used to be carried in the frame called Evison Matafale still hang with a distinct quality. Matafale went for good, true, but the fact we all live with is that his wisdom, intelligence, prophecy, silky voice and clear musical art were – and still are – mighty.

They all escaped those chilling fangs of death that senselessly and savagely smothered the life of the reggae maestro who died at a nubile 32. Quite young for a person of his caliber.

A musician with qualities, one can safely say, that any musician on the local scene is yet to boast of. Reason? Evison Matafale, profoundly called ‘the prophet’ then, was not just a musician like any other. He was a musician and more.

Matafale, the man who lived in a time he never lived

Arguably, this is one of the roles that many use in distinguishing the late Matafale’s music from other people’s music. Lately, to back up this claim, almost everybody picks at Kuyimba 1’s hit Malawi.

In it, the silky voice of the gone but to never be forgotten Matafale advises: mtendere si nsimatu ayi (Freedom is more than having food).

The people of Malawi, now agree, the man was just right at the point. They have food but does that mean they are free? The people of this nation can answer that one better, in their hearts.

Yet, the prophecy of the man survived by two full albums and a band that still exudes perfection on the reggae scene does not stop at that. It does not even conclude at Time Mark, the hit single just before his unnerving death, in which he called himself ‘Rasta Daniel…only here to finish up the revelation.’

The Arab springs, it appears, were already seen by the man in his song ‘Freedom’ in which he lets his hypnotizing voice flow with an unguarded sweetness as it proclaims:

The song is freedom, freedom, freedom/everywhere/the song is freedom/total freedom/to the people

Matafale knew and saw an age in which people will never be satisfied by almost free housing, free education, free access to medical facilities as was the case in Libya but would demand something more: freedom.

End result? The prophetic voice, clearly and with an arguable style of its own, announces in the song:

And all I can see is smoke and fire/they’re still fighting in mamaland/And all I can 
smell is bomb and blood

He knew, our safely interred prophet, that the song of freedom will not just be sung amidst peaceful ululations, it will be embroidered in sorrow. The people of Tunisia, Egypt, Libya and Syria know better.

Evison, the avid reader

Chinua Achebe, the man whom most of Africa – and even the entire world – looks at with a powerful reverence has been in the news lately. The reason being he has denied an award from the Federal government of Nigeria because, in his words, the government has not tackled issues to do with corruption and bad governance which were the same grounds he used to snub the award in 2004.

In one word, it would be prudent to say, Achebe is wise. It is in that wisdom that the man wrote in his 1986 fiction book ‘Arrow of God’ that: ‘sometimes the gods use us as a whip’.

Matafale, the fallen giant whose works refused to fall with him, was not very far from that wisdom in Time Mark as he challengingly announced, and warned, the Al Qaeda days after razing down the World Trade Centre in America on September, 11 2001:

This is the warning to the terrorists/you have been used by Almighty as a whip/to punish people of the land

Borrowing from Achebe? It appears so, one cannot completely rule out the high possibility that the man read Achebe.

Even the thinking espoused in Olenga Dzuwa, for all those who have read Malcolm X’s autobiography, will agree that it is the kind of thinking preached in the book in its foundation pages. The late ‘first black missionary’ scathingly denounces the white man. He sings, with an admirable velvet voice still:

Nawe mzungu taona wangoziulura kuti Satana ndiwe/ukulamulira dziko lapansi/ndi nkhanza zokhazokha (white man, you’ve just revealed yourself that you’re the devil incarnate/you control the whole world with all the cruelty)

Matafale, the man of God

Sometimes, it gets hard to classify the music of Matafale. That it was reggae, pure and undefiled, everyone accepts. The question lies whether it was secular or gospel. A good number of practicing Christians will be quick to dismiss the music as secular chants of a Rasta while almost every Rastafarian who chooses to appear in fidelity to the faith will embrace the man’s music as the gospel.

However, in Chauta N’gwamphamvu, the maestro reconciles the two parties to accept him as a man of God. A man who could appreciate the role of God in our lives. No wonder, he patiently implores us all to thank God, still maintaining the irresistible reggae touch and that angelic voice, as he sings:

Ukaona dzuwa latuluka/mbalame nazo zikuimba/Chauta n’gwamphamvu…timuyamike/kuti izi zipitilire/timtamande kuti iye asasiye (At the break of every new dawn/just know God is great…Let’s praise Him/for all the good works to continue)

That was in his first album, Kuimba 1. He did not stop there, anyway; in Kuimba 2, as a missionary, he went on a mission inviting people to the Rasta faith. The lyrics of Why Jesus was born bare it all:

I want to know why Jesus was born/Was he born to be king?/Oh no!/Wasn’t he already?/Oh Yes!/To save mankind/But has really man of the world been saved? Oh don’t lie! Rasta has got the answer

He released that song after divorcing with the wailing brothers; he had formed the black missionaries. In that song, he was the missionary. A black missionary inviting people to a faith he believed had answers.

Evison, the social scientist

“Matafale, what distinguishes him from other musicians, is not only the skill he laid in the instrumentation. The lyrics are even powerful, maybe even better than the voice,” Lackson Creto, a third year Chancellor College music student, describes the reggae genius such.

In Sing a Song, Matafale stays faithful to that argument. In it, he does not just sing as any other musician. He sings and dares Africa to a soul searching the entire continent appear to be scared of taking. He laments:

Africa is moving/nobody minds the destination…Corruption is still rising/the victim is the poor man…Africa is stumbling/nobody minds the destination

It is an intelligence only associated with scholars yet Matafale talked about it with a naked honesty, in music. He encrypted it in art as he did with the message on the ravaging pandemic of AIDS in Poison so Sweet in which he sings:

Do you get bored/when you hear this again, on the papers and the radios: HIV/AIDS?…The poison is so sweet/that’s what’s killing men in town…

He did the same in Watsetsereka, indisputably the hit that catapulted him to fame, in which he proclaims and reminds:

Nyerere yokonda shuga/imayamba kuzungulira pa mulomo wa kapu/kenako kugwera mommo (bad habits usually start slowly but graduate into something)

Matafale, him who valued the love for mankind

That the late Matafale wanted people to be free cannot be overemphasized. Yet the man also had a value for mankind, those principles of humanity that makes us all our brothers’ keepers.

Yang’ana Nkhope bears testimony to this when he calls on each of us to look at each other’s faces and see the resemblance on our faces just as we all resemble God.

In Umafuna Zambiri, he describes the same philosophy as he wonders why people are busy building churches when their Christians have nowhere to sleep. Is that not hypocrisy?

Evison, the political activist

Perhaps, the late Matafale had a feeling those in government had no time to listen to his songs. He felt, just an assumption, that those in authority could not stand his ‘renegade’ though honest chants of a Rasta.

That might explain why he wrote that angry letter to the then administration under the tutelage of Dr. Bakili Muluzi accusing it of having preferential treatment towards Asians and Muslims among other vices. Matafale fought for equal treatment.

It was that letter that invited the wrath of the law enforcers on him. He was arrested on November 24, taken to Lilongwe for interrogation after assuring his relations that he would be back soon as he was in no good health condition. Three days later, the full life of the reggae maestro, was announced over. They said because of pneumonia.

He left a single song, Time Mark, which was to appear in his Kuimba 3 Album. That was ten years ago.

It really is a decade since that life of a man with many faces than a musician came to a grinding, shocking, abrupt and unexpected end. His faces, nevertheless, refuse to be obliterated from the face of the earth. 

*This article was published in The Sunday Times of 27 November, 2011 the day that marked 10 years since the brutal demise of the late Evison Matafale. It appeared under the title ''√ČVISON MATAFALE:10 YEARS ON''