How to braai  civil servants

How to braai civil servants

A day after the last election, Muckraker walked into one government office to find civil servants bumjiving to Khopolo’s hit song.
Mona ke moketeng oa ngoanaka,” they sang as they gyrated while their sweat-drenched bodies kissed leisurely.
They were celebrating Uncle Tom’s stunning victory. That was a moment of jubilation and hope. Tears of joy were shed. After all, Uncle Tom had promised them a grand entrance into Canaan.
Last week, Muckraker walked into the same government office to find the same workers wearing sullen faces while reading their payslips. They were listening to Keketso Mathula’s hit song.

“O se lle ngoaneso hoba tsohle li tla loka,” they hummed along in grief.
Their heads were shoved under desks and tears of agony were rolling down their ashen cheeks.
These are the times of sorrow and poverty. Uncle Tom is frog-marching them back to Egypt, the land of their tribulations.
He is unleashing a sjambok on their bare backs while his better half ululates with vim.
The dead are missing out. Hell here in this little country that looks like a blister on South Africa’s bums.
They should have known that politicians will always eat them top to bottom like beetroot.
Their misery has come thick and fast.

Dr Majoro told them to find somewhere to play when they asked for a small salary adjustment.
“I am not your mother,” he told the civil servants who approached him cap in hand.
And so they bellowed back to their homes, hands over head.
Last week the government delayed their salaries and tried to disperse blame by pointing at some glitches in the system. Pathetic is a workman who blames his tools for a shoddy job. The message is clear: they have been lying to us that they are ‘civil servants’ when they are ‘evil servants’.

That is why Muckraker is flabbergasted that the government has not increased its allocation of tissues to civil servants. Uncouth! Callous! It doesn’t need rocket science to know that our civil servants need more tissues this year. This will be a year of emaciated cows. There will be gnashing of teeth in Maseru.
Hindsight is a great teacher for you always see clearly after the event. It cannot be denied that most civil servants voted for Uncle Tom.
They meant well and they had reason to believe that he too meant well. He probably still does but those around him have gone rogue.
In the moment of anger the civil servants tossed Size Two under a bus and laughed loud as he screamed in Lesotho riddles.
“Your 15 years of silliness and corruption are over,” they said while Size Two wreathed in pain.
Clobbered and bruised, Size Two retreated to his Roma house where he became a loyal subject of a village chief. The ruler was now being ruled.
Boom! Boom!
Size Two has been finished like the LCD. Oops, Muckraker meant finished like the BCP.
Those who had been clinging on to his seam like the Sekatles scattered and sold out.
They looked for new masters. Those like Serialong Qoo whose talents are of no use to any other political party remain holed up in the DC, waiting for the day when Uncle Tom’s government will collapse under the weight of its own sins.
That day looks so near yet so far because those in power know that it’s terribly cold outside the government.
They will paper over the cracks and hope the little threads that hold this coalition government together will last a day longer. With time our evil servants have learned that their misery is permanent, whether under Uncle Tom or Size Two.

We should not be rubbing salt on their wounds for our civil servants are some of the most resilient workers. They work for a pittance under punishing conditions.
They deal with some of the most incompetent and indolent bosses but every morning, they troop to the offices.
They have to put up with not-so-smart bosses but they still find ways to make things work. Time and again, they have to put up with under-qualified and unqualified political zealots dumped in their offices by crooked politicians.
If any civil servant thinks Muckraker is cooking up a story then a simple exercise will confirm that their offices are stuffed with dimwits offloaded by the ministers. Look to the right, left and behind you.
If you don’t see a beneficiary of nepotism then you must see Dr Mokete, the eye doctor, now. If you throw a stone in your office you are most likely to hit some party functionary who was shoved into a job by some potbellied chef.
Ours is a civil service laden with political chuff that has degrees in bootlicking, diplomas in ululating at rallies and certificates in rally attendance.

Yet astute civil servants have to somehow perform at their best with such colleagues.
Loan sharks are forever screaming in their ears, threatening murder, but they keep working.
It has not taken long for the civil servants to understand that politicians are cut from the same cloth.
What differs is the style and speed of their bungling.
The thieves around Size Two were a bit sophisticated because, at least, they took turns to milk the government dry. It took them 15 years to get to the Bidvest moment.
For those who don’t know, the Bidvest moment is when thieves refuse to stand in a neat queue for their turn to steal from the government.

By contrast, the thieves around Uncle Tom are a daft lot. They steal with zeal and refuse to cover their tracks.
They have all jumped on to the cow’s tits and are determined to suck it until blood comes out.
The crooks around Size Two pinched slowly. Those around Uncle Tom are fast and furious. They come with an army of Chinese villains too.
Under Size Two we were being robbed by our own kind. Under Uncle Tom our kind has invited other people to rob us blind. Vultures are upon us.
So bad are things that it looks as if Size Two was a good leader.
While he sips motoho under a peach tree in his yard, Size Two is thumping his chest and pampering himself with fawning compliments.

“Even at my worst, I wasn’t this bad,” he must be saying.
And it’s not entirely false. Under him civil servants were paid their pittances on time. They used to get a little increase too. Wool farmers were not molested to please some Chinese pretender.
Teachers’ strikes never lasted six months.
Tenders were rigged but not in such brazen fashion we see today.
Let the bad times roll while the masses squirm.
Never has a people been punished so viciously by those they elected.
Civil servants are still in class, learning the follies of ululating for politicians.
The lesson continues.
This is a land where hope is found in cesspits and gutters.
Nxa,” is what they all say when they think about their vote.
Happy Workers’ Day comrades.

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