Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Public gas in Malawi

On the 5th February 2011 it was reported that public farting will become an offence in the southern African country of Malawi.

“The government has a right to ensure public decency”, said George Chaponda the justice and constitutional affairs minister. “Would you like to see people farting in public anywhere? It was not there during the time of dictatorship because people were afraid of the consequences. Now because of freedom people would like to fart anywhere.”

It’s at this moment you look at the calendar. Nope, 1st of April nearly two months away. A lost Monty Python skit? Teenage pranksters hacked into Reuters?

Apparently it is a true story ( and this fuss is about an amendment to a current law on public farting passed in 1929. This old law says: “Any person who voluntary vitiates the atmosphere in any place as to make it noxious to health of persons in general dwelling or carrying a business in the neighbourhood or passing along a public way, shall be guilty of a misdemeanour.” (vitiate = spoil or impair the quality)

My prediction is that dog ownership will increase in Malawi (you know the rest of the story). And next time your workmate vitiates the atmosphere, remember that it is the aroma of freedom, according to George.

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