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WHAT gets you into trouble are not the words but their meaning.
Take for instance what happened in Mafube one afternoon, some eons ago. Little Thabo was up to his usual tomfoolery again when a pissed Muckraker said: ke tla ofa ‘M’ao.
Boom! That’s how the thunderous blow from Thabo landed on Muckraker’s head, knocking her into a gully. Thabo didn’t get his mother but he made sure Muckraker saw stars as she lay there. Thabo started being an idiot again some days later Muckraker chose her words carefully. “O tla bona khaitseli ea malomao,” Muckraker said, confident she had passed the message without attracting Thabo’s wrath.
How wrong she was. Boom! Boom! Boom! An enraged Thabo came upon Muckraker like a tonne of bricks. A swollen lip and a black eye were Muckraker’s rewards for trying to be clever. Despite being a bit slow, Thabo had caught the message faster than Muckraker had anticipated. She had hoped by the time the lights come on in Thabo’s encephalon she will be home enjoying papa ka lipu. It’s not the words but the meaning.
On reflection Muckraker thinks she should have just gone for the more biting insults like: O tla bona ntsetse! If you are going to be beaten for an insult let it be for a stinging one that really roils the heart.
If you are going to eat a dog, let it be bulldog. Never be punished for eating an emaciated and flea-infested village stray.

Those lessons came racing back to Muckraker’s mind when a local newspaper alleged that the government launched a one-player lottery for Lieutenant General Tlali Kamoli.
Do I see your face light up in disbelief?
Well, remember it’s not the words but their meaning that matters. The paper didn’t actually say the government had started lotto lottery for the general. Rather, it said government had offered the general between M40 million and M55 million to vamoose from the army.
But when you look at those vulgar figures it is as clear as the contours on Uncle Tom’s face that the paper is saying there is a government-funded Kamoli lottery in the offing.
All the general does to hit the jackpot is to say four magical words: “Yes, I leave now!”
And bingo, he will be an instant millionaire.
It was a fantastically sensational story based on faceless sources, some of whom Muckraker suspects the reporter does not even remember.
You see, when you thrive on Facebook rumours, bar-talk, street gossip and shebeen murmurings you end up confused about the source of your information.
Hence it did not take long for the newspaper to start backpedalling from the sensational piece. It was “Mews (not news) without fact or flavour” all the way.
We are sorry Ntate Kamoli, they said with a long face and perhaps a drop of one or two tears.
Kamoli and government had found a way to grip the newspaper by the balls (if there are any balls). Kamoli in particular might have started rubbing his hands in glee after seeing that story, one he knew the paper could not prove even if they hired a PI.
After all, this is a newspaper that has made its vocation to insult him at every chance. After calling him obscene names they were now accusing him of winning a rigged lottery.
Phew! Muckraker will confess that she does not mind if the General is allowed to go.
Yet that doesn’t mean people should go around publishing one-legged stories based on unsubstantiated figures. The irony here is that the newspaper got the story correct until it tried to be sophisticated by sneaking in those X-rated figures. It was a poor attempt at taking the story forward.
Without those thumb-sucked numbers the story would have stood on all four, thus saving the newspaper the nuisance of having to grovel to Kamoli.
Methinks this is a lesson to all journalists with an insatiable libido for peddling figures whose meaning they don’t understand.

The rule of thumb is that when you use a speculative figure you must base it on something or someone. Since the newspaper will fight tooth and nail to protect its sources, and rightly so, we can only assume that the sources who flogged the M40 million and M55 million figures knew what they were talking about.
On that one Muckraker cannot say more lest she be accused of insinuating that the sources are actually non-existent.
What she can however stand on is the dubious nature of the figures.
Those figures are not based on anything other than the reporter’s day dreams. Let’s do the simple arithmetic. Here all journalists who have built a Chinese Wall between themselves and Mathematics must listen carefully for Muckraker is not going to dish out this lesson again.
As commander of the army Kamoli earns around M400 000 per year. Now, if the government is going to pay him for M40 million it means they are paying him as if she would have worked for 100 years from now. By that time he would be 152 years old. Kamoli might be loathed but he is sure not immortal.
If we go by the M55 million figure it means he will be getting a salary equivalent to 137 years. That means he will be paid as if he would have worked until he is 189 years old. That doesn’t make sense at all unless you are high on something illegal, just mad or plain stupid.

Readers of local newspapers, including thepost, must be having running tummies from seeing too many headlines with “D-Day” in them.
“D-Day for Likuena”, “D-Day for Lesotho”, “D-Day for Bantu” and “D-Day for blah,blah”.
Our newspapers are now obsessed with “D-Day”.
By now the readers are wondering what D-Day really means. Muckraker was getting confused too until she checked. D-Day simply means a day on which something important is going to happen or is expected to happen. Well, that is what it should mean but it has to be used sparingly lest we go mad from reading D-Day in headlines.
In any case, it is pointless to be calling every day a D-Day as if other days are not important. Historically, D-Day is the day (6 June 1944) in the Second World War on which Allied forces invaded northern France by means of beach landings in Normandy.
Muckraker is beginning to think given the obsessive use of D-Day our newspapers now think the D means delivery or doom. If that is the case then we need deliverance from D-Day headlines before we are doomed.
For now just know that a D-Day headline is a clear sign that the subeditor had experienced a dearth in creativity. It’s an indication of laziness. In most cases it is a sign of dishonesty: that is to say a newspaper is making a meal out of nothing.

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Machonisa on fire



It was only a matter of time before the so-called socialist party owned by a machonisa started unravelling. Now the capitalist owner of the Socialist Revolutionaries is lashing out at anyone who dares to tell him to behave himself.

Teboho Mojapela is moving around his party’s structures with a phafa, leaving his victims scratching their bums.

Muckraker has no sympathy for his victims. They deserve what they are getting.

Having deluded themselves to think that they are stockholders in the SR, they should now enjoy their harvest of thorns. They were guests at Mojapela’s house but tried to tell him how to arrange his furniture and what to eat.

He is telling them to go find somewhere to play because the SR is his personal property.

That the SR is in Mojapela’s armpits has always been clear. He formed and funded it.

It’s just that some were too naïve to realise the obvious.

Thabo Shao packed his bags and left after Mojapela whipped him out of his house. He now mumbles something about Mr Machonisa being a dictator. He says that as if it’s a discovery to be shared with the rest of the world.

Yet anyone with something between their ears would have known that a machonisa who brags about beating his naughty workers could not possibly be a democratic leader.

Only Shao and a few dimwits didn’t know that.

Anyway, Shao’s exit will not change much because he just doesn’t matter. He is a political nonentity who overrates himself.

What interests Muckraker is Mr Machonisa’s nerve to call Shao an uneducated rascal. That hurts because it’s an insult coming from someone who has made it a mission to give education a bad name. Mr Machonisa’s definition of someone educated is Tlohelang Aumane. Hear, hear, and hear. Phew!

Does anyone remember Aumane saying anything either educated or educative?

Muckraker only knows him as a political jezebel incapable of staying in one political bed for more than 15 minutes. He is always itching to be married to the next political party.

Muckraker is tempted to say Aumane is politically horny but she won’t say it for fear of offending the oversensitive souls. The kind that claims to have almost suffocated to death after someone farted in a hall.

But Mr Machonisa doesn’t care about Aumane’s habits because he thinks he is renting a brilliant political mind. A few things will happen in that union.

Mr Machonisa will soon realise that Aumane is just an empty-headed political slay queen always looking for the next partner to get him Ice Tropez (May lightning strike whoever drinks that but cannot afford it. Fire!)

Aumane will realise that Mr Machonisa is a moneyed but unrefined village bumpkin whose mouth has a terrible habit of rebelling against his brain.

Mr Machonisa will find the next brain to rent while Aumane will be putting on his stilettos to find another political lover to smooch on the Maseru streets.

Nka! Ichuuuuuuuuuuu!

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The queen Mampara



Muckraker once promised to say nothing about the Feselady but that Mampara’s mouth keeps running as if it’s connected to Muela Hydro Power Station.

The Feselady told some ABC members who visited her home that she will not associate with the party until it distances itself from the remark of suspended spokesman Montoeli Masoetsa. What made her relapse to her Drama Queen ways was Masoetsa’s attack on her and her hubby. He said the ABC lost because of Uncle Tom and Feselady.

That simple truth, known to even donkeys in Qaqatu, pierced her cheeky heart and got her tummy roiling. She now says she will never wear the ABC’s regalia until the party apologises. Don’t laugh. If this was a threat, the Feselady has lost her touch.

She used to beat people for merely looking at her in a funny way or calling her hubby.

She would harass government officials in public. Now she has been reduced to threatening to avoid yellow dresses and T-shirts to fix the ABC. Boom! Boom! The mighty Drama Queen has fallen.

What remains is just the fading memories of power sexually transmitted.

The transmitter of that power has long ceased to function literally and figuratively.

But the Feselady is too engrossed with herself to realise that she has neither the power nor the capacity to make threats to anyone. She rules only her home, yard and a few idiots still clinging to her.

It takes some sophistication to read irony and the Feselady doesn’t have even a pinch of it. Her people in Mokhotlong rejected her when she tried to sneak into parliament via that hollow popularity garnered through matrimony.

ABC supporters think she is just an uncultured blabbermouth. That she thinks anyone would lose sleep over her threats to burn the party’s regalia or turn them into fatukus is comical. Her tantrums will not change a thing. Her boycott might be the best thing to happen to the party since the October 7 defeat.

Why would the few remaining ABC supporters worry about a garrulous charlatan boycotting their party?

The last time she was wearing the ABC like a wig, it lost more than 200 000 voters, flew to the opposition benches and became a smallanyana party. Nothing hurts more than that. So bring it on mummy!

Nka! Ichuuuuuuuuuuu!

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The RFP’s thokolosi



The RFP leaders should fire whoever is advising them on how to deal with constituencies demanding a conference to elect a new executive committee. Their response to those demands has been a comedy of errors.
It’s been nothing short of kindergarten blunders unbefitting of people who sold themselves as the smart ones to lead the country out of darkness.
The secretary general told those bellowing for a conference to take a chill pill and wait for Uncle Sammy to give directions.
Uncle Sammy said those people or their kind are divisive, dragging the party off its agenda and incapable of understanding his dream for the country.
Other leaders have said those clamouring for a conference can go plead their case to a mountain because the current national executive committee will run the party for another six pregnancies.
Never mind the words they use, the leaders are telling the members that they will not be told how to manage a party they started. This is to say the leaders will not be taking instructions from the riffraff. Yes, I said it! Those rubbed the wrong way can curse.
Someone should round up the RFP’s executive committee members, lock them up in a room, throw away the keys and spank them until they understand politics.
They are clearly struggling to make a distinction between a political party and private companies. You would think this is common sense but the human mind is always slow to banish habits.
The RFP leaders were used to being business owners, not political leaders. That is why they cannot understand why anyone who wasn’t there when they started the party can tell them how to manage it.
But make no mistake, reality will grab them by the noses and eyelids back to their senses. They will be taught three simple lessons. The first is that political parties are voluntary entities in which power lies with the members.
The second is that party members are not employees you can just instruct to jump around because you pay their wages.
The third, which is more important, is that the only time a political party is a personal property is when it’s an idea in the founder’s head. Once registered and people join, the members own the party together with its structures, leaders and vision.
The other problem with the RFP’s responses to the demands for an elective conference is that they keep pretending that those three constituencies are just rogues out to sabotage the party. Nothing can be further from the truth.
Those constituencies are small thokolosis of someone right there in the party’s echelons. They represent a growing faction in the party. That faction that is a thokolosi was birthed when the party was still a spirit. It was nurtured when the party was registered and continued to grow during the campaign.
By the time the RFP became government, it was a full-blown thokolosi vigorously doing bedroom things to produce more thokolosis. Now it is granddaddy thokolosi living in the RFP’s armpits.
There is a simple way to find the thokolosi’s owner.
Just round them up and beat them until their parents start wailing. If the parents don’t come out the thokolosis will run to them for protection.

Nka! Ichuuuuuuuuuuu!

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