The French have a saying, reculer pour mieux sauter (take a step back so as to make a better jump). The saying commends the practice. If you travel the growth points of
Others make shoes and handbags or school bags ‘for the Indian shops.’ Where there is an enabling environment people are very creative and industrious. Their industry is at an earlier stage than the one that produces tractors and combined harvesters but perhaps it is better founded.
And what is true of the economic life of people could also be true of their politics. Small communities, women’s groups, residents associations, burial societies and similar civic groups are discovering how to order their affairs and find their voice. The grand politics of sovereignty and liberation, that may have served us for a time after independence, is now giving way at the grassroots to something much more modest but also much more solid.
Christians call this time of the year ‘Lent’ – a word that perhaps comes from the len(gh)t(ening) of the days (in the northern hemisphere). It is a time of preparation for celebrating the mysteries of Jesus’ death and rising. This means that it is a time for reflecting on our own ‘death’ and our own ‘rising’ as persons and as a country. The first stage is the death.
That is where we are now in