We may hold our own opinions— good or bad—about the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) Vice President Sidik Mia—it is okay to hold such opinions for opinions are free of charge. However, one thing is clear. There is a general consensus among media houses in the country. When it comes to describing Sidik Mia, they describe him as “a business tycoon” or “a business magnate.” Some say he is the “Shire Valley Baron.”
What this means is that Sidik Mia is a successful businessman not because the local media describes him as so but because it is what he is—a very wealthy businessman. This is a feat no one can take from him.
What it means is that Sidik Mia is a genius in as far as business administration is concerned. Running a business is not for every Jim and Jack. We have seen many people running business and we have also seen how many of such businesses collapse. Reason: Most people have no business acumen.
This is unlike Mia. He has been in business for decades and his business has been and continues to grow stronger each passing year. This shows that Mia has a business acumen and wisdom which we, aspiring young entrepreneurs, can and must tap from.
You see, in this day and age of high levels of unemployment which is forcing young people to venture into entrepreneurship, we, young people, need to be equipped with the skills of how to run a successful business.
So the question remains; what can we, aspiring entrepreneurs, learn from one humble business tycoon Sidik Mia?
Well, I happened to observe Mia in action for two separate days BUT what came out very clearly is that the guy is a hard worker. I didn’t observe him in his business operations but during his political ventures where I was invited to cover his function. The experience I got was enough for me to deduce that the guy’s success, can be attributed, among other things, to his hard working spirit and discipline.
One day, I accompanied Mia and his security crew during a whistle-stop tour in Lilongwe. We departed early in the morning for a 12 venue stop over journey. He kept addressing people, without time for lunch, he was just taking water, until dusk. Those who were with me during this whistle-stop tour would agree with me. We would sneak in course of his speech to a nearby market to buy whatever was available to eat but not him. I asked those very close to him; do you keep food for the boss to eat in his car, “No,” was the answer I got.
“When we are here in the field, he survives on water only. If anything, he will take supper when we go back to base this evening.” This is how strong and disciplined Sidik Mia is. Amazing!
In another incident, there was an announcement on the radio that he (Mia) would be in Chikwawa and Nsanje conducting whistle-stop tours before a mega rally at Fatima Boys Ground in Nsanje North Constituency that following Sunday. This advert was being aired on Saturday and on this day, Mia was in the Northern region district of Rumphi attending a cultural festival.
We learnt that he departed for Blantyre from Rumphi very late and was arriving in Blantyre quite very late as well—around 3:00am. He literally slept for few hours and 7:30am, we were on the road with him to Nsanje where he was scheduled to conduct a rally at the said Fatima Boys Ground.
However, before addressing that mega rally, he had to address whistle-stop tours along the way and this justified our departing early for business of that day.
He kept talking and standing in all the planned whistle-stop tour venues. We also made several ad hoc stop overs as we would see a lot of people along the road waiting to wave and catch a glimpse of the man.
Departing early in the morning, we arrived at Fatima ground around 3:00pm. He addressed the rally until darkness fell and off we set off for our respective bases.
As I was reflecting on ALL this experience today, I said to myself that this guy is a hard worker and perhaps this is the reason why he is successful.
This is my observation but I would be pleased if I would hear from the horse’s mouth.
I therefore would like to request radio and TV stations presenters to make a date with him and instead of subjecting him to political questions, as you always do, please spend time with him asking him to reveal the secrets behind his business success. Such a discussion would help most young Malawians who are struggling to make ends meet rather than just talking about politics each time you have an opportunity to interview him.
Alternatively, I would like to ask Honorable Sidik Mia to consider talking about his business success story on a campaign trail to inspire young Malawians. He must also assure young Malawians that he will be there for them, to mentor them to become genuine entrepreneurs once they vote for the MCP pair of Dr Lazarus Chakwera and himself Sidik Mia next year as President and Vice President of the republic of Malawi respectively.