Muckraker: Let the MPs fight

Muckraker: Let the MPs fight

MUCKRAKER, a rural girl to the core, has always liked real fights that are unregulated by rules and unrestrained by the pretentious dictates of decency. There is always something fascinating about spontaneous brawls. A spark is all it takes. Fought without weapons and by equally built opponents (not gender-based violence), fist fights are thoroughly enjoyable.

Top of Muckraker’s long bucket list is an opportunity to grab an MP by the collar and beat him to pulp, right there in parliament and to the wild cheers of his comrades. But given the security those MPs enjoy, that has always looked like a pipe-dream.
Still, while waiting for her rather lofty dream to come true, Muckraker has been prepared to settle for anything resembling a fight in parliament.
It matters not who is doing the beating as long as an MP has been pounded.

So imagine Muckraker’s delight last Friday when some MPs threatened to rearrange each other’s faces. Sitting in the public gallery, Muckraker ululated and bum jived. This, Muckraker thought, is the moment we have been waiting and praying for.
Finally there was going to be some whipping in parliament. And indeed there was some pushing and shoving. Timid punches were thrown, throats grabbed and ties pulled.

Then as the real blows were about to rain on someone a bunch of overzealous MPs appointed themselves peacemakers and jumped between the opponents.  At that moment the match this Mafube girl had been waiting for had been sabotaged.
As the tension diminished so did the chance that bones would be broken, eyes gouged, ears wringed and faces pummelled.

The anti-climax was infuriating for the fiasco had begun with so much drama. Sister Doti, in particular, is to blame for vigorously sabotaging the fight.
The injustice of her action on Muckraker and other fun-starved Basotho is abundantly clear.

It’s not clear how Sister Doti flew into the fracas. One minute she was just minding her own business and the next she was pulling the MPs apart.
Some might argue that Sister Doti did the honourable thing to stop the fight. They are probably right, but only to the extent that the parliament is not an ideal boxing arena.

In any case, we should remember that Sister Doti is a mother in that parliament.
Mothers stop fights. She could not stand, arms akimbo, as the MPs clobbered each other. Stopping the fight was the moral thing to do and Sister Doti should be commended for that.

But politics is not governed by morals and decency. It is a filthy game played by the riffraff of society. The parliament also looks like a boxing arena (look at it closely and see what I mean). The reasons for allowing the fight far outweighed those for stopping it. Muckraker will give you just a few to illustrate that allowing MPs to exchange blows is fantastic.

The first is that a fight would have been a huge favour to the masses already pissed to the back teeth with their MPs.
A survey among friends and fellow villagers will show that the majority are itching to whack their MP.
But since they never get that opportunity, many would have celebrated the MPs hiding each other for the whole day.
After all, there is nothing wrong with fools smacking each other. Muckraker understands from Proverbs in the Big Book that “Even if you beat fools half to death, you still can’t beat their foolishness out of them.”

Yet that does not mean we should stop those fools from beating each other. It actually serves the angry people the trouble of having to spank them. On that point alone Sister Doti went against the grain. The second is that our parliament is legendary for being numbingly boring. Our MPs are so obsessed with being courteous that they forget their role is to shake things up with robust debate and candid comment.
Therefore a bit of fighting would have infused the much needed drama in that dull place.

The third is that occasional fights stop the MPs from sleeping in parliament. There are dozens of MPs who have turned parliament into their bedroom.
They find the most comfortable seat and doze off. Discussions and debates are irritating noises interfering with their core business of snoozing. The solution to such indolence is to start occasional fights.

That way MPs will know that if you visit the dreamland you will find yourself up-side-down on the floor.

The fourth is that anyone who receives interest-free loan of half a million maloti should give back a little something to the community.
Since these MPs are so stingy Muckraker thinks it would not be too much trouble if we ask them to have some mini-boxing matches in parliament.
The purpose, of course, is to entertain the people who elected them.

A little drama is all we ask for in exchange for the interest-free loans and the obscene salaries we pay them. The salaries are vulgar in the context of the little work they do and what the average voter earns.
If the MPs cannot deliver on their campaign promises — which they never so — at least they should give us something to laugh about.
After all, laughter is the best medicine. Yes, it’s the medicine for the misery they have caused us.

The fifth reason is that our MPs are lackadaisical when it comes to important matters. The only way to train them to be brisk is to encourage fights.
Fighting involves hurrying and running. You gallop when fists and chairs are flung your way. If you don’t duck fast you will bite the dust.
The point here is that scuffles will teach our MPs to do things faster, something we urgently need in this country.

The sixth reason is that brawls in parliament will give the MPs something interesting to tell their nyatsis. Imagine how dreary it might be for the MPs to be telling their nyatsis about the lousy debate and the routine prayers.  “Honey, what happened in parliament?” “Nothing much, we just prayed and adjourned the session”. The nyatsis are tired of being told about bills, silly debates and adjournment. They want real drama that is thrilling. Imagine the amount of bonding that will happen if an MPs had something as dramatic as a fight to tell their nyatsis every day.

Monday: “Today was hectic. A chair missed my eye by a whisker. I gave Qoo an uppercut and he tumbled over. Oh, baby, you should have seen how the man wailed.”
Tuesday: “Pontšo Sekhatle was on fire today. She knocked out Fako with a karate kick.” “Yoh, that woman has got moves. She was jumping on tables while kicking a screaming Fako.”
Wednesday: “Honey, I never knew that Mosisili was a boxer. Baby, you should have seen how he went for Thabane. It was crazy! But now I know that Thabane is a schemer.
As Mosisili was coming for him Thabane pulled a long sjambok from his jacket. Mosisili retreated and hid behind Motanyane who was threatening to bite anyone who comes closer”.
Thursday: “Today Moleleki threatened to spank Mosisili if he doesn’t stop using insulting idioms. He said he will beat Mosisili together with his cows and camels. Mosisili said he was ready for a fight but not Moleleki’s funeral so he would rather walk away.”
Friday: “Baby, today was the best. We beat the opposition MPs until they were bellowing for their mothers. Give me a massage because I need to be fresh for next week. Metsing has threatened revenge.”
Saturdays and Sundays are reserved for the real families not fornicating. They should give summaries of the parliamentary dramas to their families.

Finally Muckraker would like to say she is deeply embarrassed by the way one sister from a rival paper covered the fracas in parliament.
The sister who works for Lesotho’s only Sunday paper and is given to occasional bouts of whining went to great lengths to minimise the story.
The story ended before it started as the reporter tried to squeeze out its juiciest details. She only told us that “chaos rocked parliament” with MPs “shoving and chocking each other”. We are not told who chocked who and who shoved who.

From reading the story it would seem that Qoo is the one who caused the chaos by refusing to accept the Speaker’s instructions to put his bum down.
What role Qoo played in the ensuing chaos is not clear. Equally hazy is which opposition MP was involved in the scuffle.
Muckraker wondered if the Sister was at the parliament when the fight happened.

But because the Sister is one of the most punctual reporters to functions Muckraker will assume that she was there.
If she was there then she would have at least told us which MPs moved from their seats. She would know who started the fight.
The suspicion is that she knows who started the fight but does not want to offend her political handlers.
Muckraker will say no more lest she be accused of pillorying reporters beneath her. It’s always good to make that distinction clear.
Let’s hope we have not entered the frightening era of self-censorship.

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