You mark dates on the calendar based on their importance. There are fridays, Fridays and then FRIDAYS.
Tomorrow is a FRIDAY because something big is likely to happen, at least according to those who claim to have their ducks in a row. And it will happen when people still have the pennies to wash it down with some merry waters.
Our excitable but mediocre reporters would say the bell tolls for Size Two.
A cliché here, a cliché there, and they think they have written a story. Substance and analysis are a bother forever interfering with pedestrian reportage.
They walk with a spring in their step and a mouth ready to gloat about their talents. Muckraker’s appeal to our scribes is to go easy on the clichés this week because the story does not need any to give it oomph. A good story writes itself.
How more dramatic can it be that Size Two is being shoved to the door while pooping his usual riddles. It is the day when Size Two will have to fight for his political life.
That alone is enough to give a fillip to the story which has been told from back to front and front to back several times.
The opposition is sharpening its machetes against the man from Tseolike. By Friday morning he will be back whence he came, they say.
That is all good if the opposition is going to stand together when the voting comes. There is possibility that some MPs might sabotage the motion for fear of being forced to seek a new mandate from the people they lied to a few months ago.
By voting for the motion to send Size Two back to Tseolike some MPs might be unwittingly signing their dismissal letters.
There is absolutely no guarantee that they will come back to parliament if Size Two declares an election. And an election is his way of saying “if I cannot have it then no one else should”.
Truth be told, some MPs are like a villager who ululates for a sangoma whose bones will point to his uncle or aunty as the one sending to meet their maker.
Indeed, those with something between their ears know that their fate might be intricately tied to that of Size Two.
The only difference is that after being kicked out Size Two will go back to his camels while they go back to nothing.
A pensioner, Size Two no longer has to worry about baby formula and trinkets for nyatsis. The same cannot be said for some of our young MPs (male or female) who have used their little fortunes to amass both debt and concubines.
Muckraker cannot wait for the day when the MPs will be pounding the streets of Maseru, looking for jobs.
That is if some of them are employable. That august House is teeming with jesters who should be nowhere near any company or government office.
Muckraker has received shrieking letter from a fuming junior doctor. The little doctor was responding to the article in which Muckraker told his ilk to zip it and pay their dues to the country before they slither out to greener pastures.
Using in inelegant language and clumsy syntax, usually reserved for village bumpkins, the little doctor went for Muckraker’s mother, describing her anatomy in graphic detail.
For a moment Muckraker thought the little doctor has been playing peeping tom as her mother bathed at the river. Bloody pervert.
Given that most doctors are rascals, Muckraker will not discount that possibility. There have been days when MaMuckraker suspected someone was watching her as she dunked her old self into the river.
Muckraker could only chuckle as the doctor went after a poor rural woman who would never hear his insults. It’s a pity the woman does not have an opportunity to respond for she would have put the little doctor in his place. The gutter being his rightful place.
Still Muckraker found it in her soft heart to sympathise with the little doctors. After years sweating it out at university, they probably thought they were going to be swimming in money. Phew!
That this misguided dream has been shuttered is not Muckraker’s problem. The little doctors are our goats to tie to a tree for the next five years.
We own them from head to toe and no amount of insults from their ill-mannered mouths is going to change that. That, of course, does not mean the government should treat them like slaves.
True, they should have contracts, decent wages and better working conditions.
Yet these demands must be placed in the right context. If working for long hours is what has got the little doctors whimpering then they are fighting a losing battle. That’s just the nature of the job.
As for the salaries, it is clear as a goat’s behind that employers pay what they can afford not what the employees think they deserve.
Throw a stone at the government complex and you are likely to hit a civil servant who is overworked and underpaid.
Muckraker will not retract her statement about junior doctors being overrated. Health Minister Monyamane had better stood up to those reprobates if he doesn’t want to get the spanking of his life from Muckraker.
They will complete their housemanship in Lesotho before they prostitute their state-sponsored qualifications across Mohokare.
Meanwhile, Muckraker patiently waits for yet another stinging letter from the doctor who called himself Cursepainter (you have to be doubly daft to use such a pseudonym).
Muckraker admires Rethabile Mahopolo, the sister who writes a biting feminist column for the Public Eye. It takes guts to go against the grain like she does.
On her best days she is capable of enunciating her views with spectacular clarity. That’s largely because she has a decent head on her shoulder and a good dose of respect for grammar rules.
But there are days when she exudes so much bitterness that she gets lost in her emotions. You see a sister who needs therapy rather than acres of space in a national newspaper to spew her bile at the male species (not that men don’t deserve some spanking).
Mahopolo has a way of getting hopelessly entangled in the web of her own skewed ideology. Blame that on her little understanding of what it means to be feminist, a noisy but dying breed.
It’s patently sad that such an out-of-fashion ideology has to rely on advocates like her for stimulus. In her last instalment, perhaps one of her worst so far, she found herself in a dilemma.
On one hand he was screaming about women respecting their bodies (which is an astute argument) while on the other she was haranguing them for selling themselves too cheap.
So in one article she has talked about respect of femininity while putting a hefty premium on it.
In other words women should respect themselves enough to sell themselves for the right price. The right price here being marriage or some real amount.
A few thousands are not enough for a woman to open her legs for a man, she opined. That, of course, might be true were it not so estranged from reality.
The last time Muckraker checked there were desperate women opening their legs for R30 or less. Some are opening their legs for Streetwise Two.
And no amount of bellowing from a columnist will alter that. The argument about women respecting their bodies has a way of bouncing on its head especially when pushed from a holier-than-thou perspective.
Pushed by those who think they are perched on a higher moral pedestal, it becomes a sekorokoro of an argument. Its worse when those pushing it forget that it is part of a much more sophisticated and fundamental argument about women empowerment.
But what really knocks the legs off the argument is that its purveyors want to play aunt and portray men as mean monsters hunting for some naïve women in which to inject their seeds.
In the end it makes women look like just idiots who have no say in matters of sex. It undermines the intelligence of women in the name of protecting them from the ‘evil men’. Sister Mahopolo was so angry at men that she could not resist the temptation waffle.
“We were raised to cherish our femininity and treasure is like a gold mine but it appears nowadays it has been reduced to a mere gold pan,” she thundered, perhaps conveniently blind to the ridiculousness of comparing femininity to a goldmine.
“You see there is a huge difference between gold mining and gold panning. The latter is a cheap, simple and easy process while the former requires investment, dedication and hard work!
A man should not just have to splash a couple of thousands of dollars on you to get between your legs. That is panning.”
By the time she finished that line her argument was in a ditch. Apart from lacking substance the example is premised on a horribly wrong assumption that gold panning is a “cheap, simple and easy process”.
Anyone with even a cursory understanding of panning will tell you it breaks both backs and souls for so little.
To say Basotho men panning in zama-zama are playing is to peddle a lie.
By the way there is no difference between gold mining and gold panning. Gold panning is a type of gold mining in which you use a pan. You owe me a drink for that free lesson sister.
The not so noble Ashraf
English has never been our mother. It abandons us in times of trouble, especially when cornered. The best time to judge a person’s eloquence in English is when they are in distress. Walim Ashraf, the man accused of stealing M7.4 million, lost his English bundles last week when he was caught in a blue lie.
His bail hearing was going well until a DCEO investigator told the prosecutor that he was emitting lies with a straight face. He had told the court that his three children and wife were in South Africa. He even added that children were schooling in South Africa. That sounded plausible and the court appeared to have taken his word for it until the prosecutor announced that his wife and three children were in fact in India. Bingo!
Caught in the lie, Ashraf mumbled an apology before telling the court that “it was a slip of the tongue”.
In other words, his tongue has slipped and called South Africa India.
At that moment, Ashraf believed that claiming that your family is in South Africa when they are in India is a “slip of the tongue”.
The phrase he was looking for is: “I am a pathetic liar”. A slip of the tongue is a minor mistake in speech, not a fictitious relocation of your family from India to South Africa. Muckraker will not pass judgement on his charges.
Suffice to say Ashraf is an Arabic name meaning ‘most honourable one’ or ‘very noble’. Tongues that claim to have slipped when they are lying are not so noble.
Its squeaky bum time
Uncle Sam and his leadership should not be surprised that the opposition is now grabbing them by the collar. They played into the government’s hands by making hasty and emotional decisions.
The suspension of the three MPs has now triggered a backlash that might topple the government.
The opposition is smelling blood and getting ready to pounce.
Even if Uncle Sam’s government survives the next storm, the opposition will keep coming. They are possessed by the spirit of destruction.
The next few years will be tsunami after tsunami.
Nothing motivates a politician more than the prospect of finishing off a wounded opponent.
Muckraker is tempted to say the RFP still has a chance to regroup and fight from one corner but that would be false. The trust has been broken and the wounds are too deep.
Those who have been suspended want revenge. Mediation is a waste of time. Nothing is ever forgiven and forgotten in politics.
Muckraker’s humble advice to Uncle Sam and his people is that they should stock up on painkillers because there are more pounding headaches on the way.
Keep some pills at home, office, office toilet, back pocket, handbag, wallet and even bra.
Mapesela will not rest until he is back in government and proudly messing up things.
He is beating war drums.
Uncle Sam and his people had better learn to play dirty because this is a rough game. Bones will be broken and bodies bruised.
Spare a prayer for Uncle Sam as he walks on the glowing coals that is Lesotho’s politics. Call your prophets, fake and real, because the demons of Lesotho’s politics are at the gates.
Bring both fire and water because these are not Mickey Mouse demons. Leave the pigs out of this one, I beg. We still need fariki after exorcising the evil spirits. As usual, you need the powers of a potent wizard to decipher why the opposition is gathering wood for a pyre to burn both the government and its leader. That it’s such a hotchpotch betrays the fact that the reasons are contrived rather than real.
Even if they are real, none of them justifies toppling a government so soon.
And none of the opposition leaders could claim, without the usual dose of embellishment, that the so-called ‘reasons’ have come from the people. There is no scale to weigh the people’s disgust at Uncle Sam and his people.
There is no reason to pretend that those plotting to whip Uncle Sam out of office are doing it for the people who voted less than a year ago. This is just another group of excitable and power-mongering zealots cooking up reasons to justify their attempt to instigate a power grab.
You hear from their flawed logic when they exuberantly claim that it is their right to bring a no-confidence vote against the government.
They pull out that trump card even when no one has accused them of any criminality. They do it to sanitise and deodorise their brazen usurpation of the people’s power.
It’s their way of justifying why a group of less than 50 people who lost an election now has both the power and the nerve to topple a government supported by thousands of Basotho. Oops, that’s a lie. This a decision of less than 10 political leaders who are now shopping around for other MPs to support their decision.
Yes, toppling a government in parliament is not illegal. Yes, the opposition can do it. But the pertinent question is whether this is what Basotho want and it’s good for Lesotho.
Who has told the politicians that this is what the people want? Who did they consult, when and how?
Yes, Uncle Sam is fumbling and dithering. Yes, some of his ministers behave like rabbits caught in headlights on the Main North 1 Road. True, some of the appointments stink of nepotism.
But all these are nothing new or outrageous. We have seen worse from the very people now screaming their lungs out. It’s not as if the opposition now has a low tolerance for tosh.
After all, they are the very masters of tosh. This is not about service delivery or some transgressions.
This is about power and resources. Not power to serve Basotho. Not resources to share with Basotho. It is about the power to shove in their armpits while they munch the resources. That is why they keep telling us what Uncle Sam has done wrong instead of saying why they think they will do better.
They are not saying they will screw us softly this time around. No promise to go easy on the looting. Nothing about limiting the number of rats in the granary. They don’t even have the decency to promise to move from F to E.
As far as they are concerned, we just have to stand by and watch while they kick out Uncle Sam and then cheer as they march back to do more of the same. This is the contempt they have for the people. We elect governments that MPs have the power to topple willy-nilly while claiming to be acting on our behalf. We have been screwed before but these are rough riders. Phew!
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