You idiot, you said they will never find out that it was a private visit?
We aint gonna work in MAG's farm no more...
Dhivehi Observer, 18 May 2007
During the twilight years of the Nasir era, a group of music lovers got together in the Maldives and held the Rock n' Roll concert; musicians from all walks of life participated in this colourful event from the likes of Naibugey Shiham, the father of rock music in the Maldives, to the unforgettable Dheedhibey. However it was the Bob Dylan's classic "I ain't gonna work on Maggie's farm no more" that resonated around the hall. Soon after, Nasir was gone.
We Maldivians culturally have been superstitious people. We have the tendency to draw uncanny conclusions from unlikely events. In this regard, with the news that Dictator Gayyoom's party 'the DRP' has recently held another music concert under whatever guise to promote their campaign on Presidential system of government makes one wonder if this is not hammering of the final death nail on the dictator's coffin by his own people?
After all, how much more spin can even his own people stomach? Like the attempt to portray the dictator's recent visit to the UK as an official visit when it is in reality a private one. Since the UK is one of the countries that supports democratic reform in the Maldives, it is a brilliant opportunity for his cronies to pull a fast one over our eyes and make us think that the UK now supports all what the dictator does. Only if it worked!
However, it is crucial to note that the FCO Minister Lord Mark Malloch-Brown stated that "It is important that the elections due in 2008 are seen to be free, fair and inclusive and that they enjoy the support of all the people of the Maldives." The key word here is the support of ALL the people of the Maldives; and not just his own cronies. Could he hold free, fair and inclusive elections that have the support of all the people of the Maldives? Yes, most certainly. Will he do it though? Highly unlikely!
The evidence of this lies in the sly nature of his election campaign begun by his monthly radio broadcasts. Churchill did it, Roosevelt had his "fireside" chats, Bush continues it, but if the dictator (or Tim Fallon) thinks that this will work, then they may not understand the Maldivian psyche very well. We are sick of seeing his face. We are sick of hearing his monotonous voice droning on and on, taking half an hour to explain that the hat is something you wear on your head. To put it bluntly, Gayoom is no Mark Antony. He is not even an Ibrahim Shihab. Oratory is not his forte and will never be. Therefore, if he thinks that a monthly address on the radio is going to make people listen and accept his lies, then he is wrong.
Not only do we have to listen to his boring dull voice, we are now being subjected to His Dictatorship's presence on our islands as well. Irrespective of their own wishes our sisters and wives are being forced to come out and dance in front of him when His Dictatorship arrives on his campaign trip. Our children are being forced to stand out in the burning sun in midday in order to clap and cheer him on when in reality they should be studying at school. Our mothers and grandmothers are forced to bend their backs to sweep the island roads so that His Dictatorship can step onto freshly swept soil untarnished by the footsteps of his slaves. And if they so much as whisper their objections, our brothers and fathers are locked up at His Dictatorship's pleasure in Dhoonidhoo Island. And he wants us to accept him as our President for another 5 years?
Today we are aware of what is going on – why we are still a long way away from getting a constitution that will guarantee us our rights. We do not need anyone to outline that for us. It is simple and straightforward. The dictator does not want a new constitution. If he wanted reform, he has the majority in the Constitutional Assembly and they would have changed the constitution by now. He does not want multiparty democracy. He wants to cling on to his dictatorship.
We are not stupid. We are not the dim-witted islanders that the elite of this country has long believed us to be and treated as such. In another word, we are not "fas kulhandhu madhu beerattehin". We are no longer ready to bow at anyone's feet. No sir, no more.
It is time to bring change from this corrupt Presidential system to a participatory Parliamentary system.
It is time that we took control of our destiny.
It's definitely time to sing..
"We aint gonna work in MAG's farm no more....."
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© Dhivehi Observer 2004