Sometimes in life, it is wiser to accept defeat because God created human beings differently and gifted each one of them with unique talents. Society also recognises and rewards people’s abilities differently in accordance with their set of skill. When your neighbour outplays you at a given endeavour, it doesn’t kill to concede defeat. Failure to adhere to this basic life principle breeds jealousy, bitterness and eventually harm or death.
When we heard the song “Koswe mu mpoto” by Chama Fumba, alias Pilato, we knew that he had outplayed his competitors in the game. Pilato’s song is a brilliant piece of art in which he shows off his God-given talent. Even his friends who were equally blessed with singing abilities; those without jealousy can agree with us that the Ndola based artiste pushed his intelligence to the limits to produce the hit song.
The singer is sensitising us to be watchful of the mischievous lifestyle of a rodent. If anyone thinks he is not talking about a rat but a particular politician; if when he mentions a rat’s dental formula people imagine someone’s front teeth, well, that’s the point where you respect the composer and salute them for doing so without saying so.
But as expected, one side of the political divide is calling for the blood of the singer. They are not happy at all that this song has attracted nationwide attention. Our brothers and sisters in the Patriotic Front have refused to accept that Pilato has outsmarted them. They don’t want to appreciate the fact that, when it comes to poetry, none of them has the capacity to beat his skills.
This is why the youths in the PF are issuing threats against Pilato. Failure to accept defeat has caused them devastation. Their hearts are burning with fury. Chabanyonga. Bitterness is consuming them over this “Koswe” song and they don’t seem to know how to deal with it. Those in PF would not have behaved like this if one of their fans had come up with such a popular song that they could use to mock their political rivals. They would have made it a social anthem like they did on the alluring Dununa Reverse song during the last election campaigns.
But there is a very interesting reason why PF youths think they can succeed at intimidating Pilato. To explain this, we might have to use the example of a farmer. There is always a misconception in our society of looking at a farmer as an uneducated or unemployed villager. The truth is that some of the richest people we have in this country are farmers. The truth is that most peasant farmers in our rural areas have unimaginable knowledge about their occupation. Through their practice, they have learnt agricultural skills that no minister can teach them. Yet, when they stand up to raise an issue, we insult their intelligence by questioning what they know about agriculture policies.
In Zambia today, we look down at our musicians. Politicians respect the influence that music producers have, but they underestimate their intelligence. They are used to treating them as poor beggars whom they can abuse during campaign time and dump them after being elected. When one of them stands up like Pilato has done and makes them reflect, they say leave politics to politicians. Why should musicians leave politics today when you campaigned together yesterday? If you wanted voters to listen to them in 2016, let the people continue listening to these musicians in 2017, 2018, 2019 etc. If you thought artistes don’t have wisdom beyond entertaining drunkards at night, well Pilato is asking you to think again.
We have interacted with Pilato and we can attest to the fact that his level of apprehension is far beyond the imagination of those who are threatening him. Pilato is not dull. He might be chasing after a disrespected career, he might be perceived as a chamba smoker, but the young man understands politics and social issues better than the majority of those we elected into office. If any member of parliament doubts what we are saying, we challenge them to call Pilato to a live TV debate to argue any topic that would be of interest to Zambians. Then they will understand why Pilato and many other intelligent musicians we have in this country chose to get paid by entertaining citizens other than making noise in Parliament.
Pilato took his time to carefully think about the words he was going to use in his ‘provocative’ song. He spent time thinking, carefully, about the consequences of the lyrics he was going to put up, in the end, he came up with an irresistible tune, which we have no doubt that even the police are enjoying. In fact, even at State House, those with a sense of humour are cracking their ribs when they listen to Pilato’s song, because it is too good to ignore.
We wonder how those who want to punish Pilato for releasing this song will succeed. Who is going to arrest the artiste, and charge him with what? Defamation of a rat?