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Mercenaries in our schools



MUCKRAKER will never join the bandwagon of those sympathising with the striking teachers.
They are just an indolent lot, holding both parents and the government to ransom.
There is something horribly wrong with the wholesale demands teachers have bellowed about for more than a year.
The unions want a general salary review for every teacher, including those notorious for bunking classes and churning out atrocious results.
You don’t hear the unions yelling about performance-related salaries because they know most teachers are slouching on chairs, legs perched on desks, waiting for another pay day.

The unions will not shriek about basing salaries on results because they know it is an unwinnable battle.
Behind every fool in this country is a teacher.
Yeh, Muckraker has said it and will say it again even if the motor mouth called Letsatsi Ntsibolane threatens fire and thunder.
The mediocrity brimming in this country is a serious indictment on the teaching profession.
True, they can point at the likes of Dr Majoro and Professor Nqosa Mahao to gloat about their success but the truth is that there are not many like them around. The rest of the country is teeming with ignoramuses hostile to common sense.

Ask them why their students are failing and you hear a plethora of lame and deceitful excuses. Nyoe, nyoe, we cannot perform miracles with students who don’t have a proper foundation.
Universities and colleges say they receive raw students from secondary schools.
For the first few months they have to teach students basic concepts they should have learned at primary school.
If it’s English they have to start from “Johny kicked the ball”.
Even Grade 1 teachers whimper about the students’ foundation as if that is found in mothers’ bellies.
Nyoe, nyoe, nyoe, the classes are too big. Holy crap! Lesotho’s classes are much smaller than some western countries whose students are faring better. We have one of the lowest teacher-student ratios in Southern Africa.

Even those teachers in private schools where there are fewer students in classes are not doing a better job.
In any case, there is no concrete evidence to support the notion that bigger classes affect grades and performance. It’s telling that the teachers-student ratio is not one of the issues in this strike.
What the teachers should demand is a reduction of the mundane paperwork so they can concentrate on the core business of teaching.
Blah, blah blah there are no books and other teaching aids. Good teachers will always find ways around such problems. Blah, blah, blah we are overworked and underpaid.
Teachers should be working seven days a week to compensate for the three months they spend at home during holidays. As for the idea that they are underpaid, Muckraker can only ask to whom they are comparing themselves. They are some of the highest paid civil servants despite that they do so little work.
All this is boloney. It’s just a hotchpotch of excuses to disperse blame for their shoddy service to the students.

It is outrageous that unions want teachers to be automatically promoted after getting new qualifications.
The reasoning here is so inane that it should not be coming from people who claim to be teachers.
Just because you have an additional qualification doesn’t mean you are more efficient.
Your promotion should be based on performance. Yet our teachers want to be paid for going to school even if they will still be doing the same job. There is no evidence to suggest that a degree holder is a better teacher than a diploma holder. Zero!
Teaching used to be a calling. Today’s teacher is a mercenary who studied education because they could not be accepted into any other course.

Most faculties said “no, not here. Find somewhere to play”.
It is not passion that drove most to become teachers.
They are teachers because it’s relatively easy to be hired.
Once they get the post they start crying about the benefits and salaries as if someone begged to employ them. They forget that they said “I beg to apply”. They pretend to be the best thing to happen after sliced bread yet they know that they can be replaced by the end of their lesson.
This country doesn’t lack qualified teachers. We already have too many unemployed teachers.
What we need are committed and competent teachers. Just because someone is clutching a teaching diploma or degree doesn’t mean they can teach.

Let Muckraker tell you something about these fraudsters we call teachers. Any parent will tell you that there has been a sudden increase in the amount of homework their children bring from school.
The teachers are loading more and more work on the parent.
They call it a “partnership” in the education of children but it’s a ruse to reduce their workload.
Teachers have transferred their work to the parents so that they can skive and gallivant.
These days Muckraker spends hours helping her two nieces with their homework, the same things they are supposed to have mastered at school.
Homework is fraud perpetrated on parents by lazy teachers.

The rip-off doesn’t end there. Today’s teacher is quick to suggest extra lessons if a parent is worried about their child’s grades.
The same teacher on a salary has no qualms demanding an extra bread to give extra lessons to the same student they teach. The disgrace of this scheme cannot be overstated.
You send your child to school and the teacher sleeps on the job so they can demand additional pay to teach them. Most of the extra classes are actually just glorified after-school-care arrangements.
They are nothing more than schemes to blackmail parents.
Muckraker recently withdrew one of her nieces from those sham classes after realising that the teacher spends her time peddling candy to the students while basking in the sun.

Muckraker is tired of teachers complaining about the “hardship” allowances, the stipend given to teachers in rural areas. The hypocrisy is astounding.
It is common knowledge that the average teacher in Lesotho comes from rural areas.
Most first met the shower and toilet chamber at the Lesotho College of Education or the National University of Lesotho. Even those who stayed in towns used VIP toilets and had never experienced the miracle of a tap oozing hot water.
Those from rural areas traveled for hours to school, while farting the gasses off their empty bellies.
They had neither shoes nor uniforms. Now just because they are qualified teachers they whine about working in rural schools. They want to be compensated for working in the same places they spent their childhood.

Their rural bums are no longer good enough for VIP toilets.
It’s as if eyes are now allergic to the smoke of firewood. Phew!
The government should pay them for using candles and travelling on horseback. Phew!
We are now paying villagers staying in villages.
If teaching is such a wretched job then how come they are not quitting in droves?
Why is it that most spend decades in the same job and, more often than not, in the same school?
The answers are clear. First, teachers are not as underpaid as they claim. If the salaries were so low then they would have left their jobs.
Second, teaching is one profession that rewards laziness. No teacher has ever been fired for bad grades.
There are no performance targets to measure a teacher’s output.

Third, most teachers have it good because they have a three-month paid holiday every year.
Fourth, they are in a profession that allows them to cheat the system. They can rig term tests by coaching their students on the examination. They can test the students on the little they have taught and still maintain the façade of being brilliant teachers.
Let’s not hear about principals because they too are just teachers who happen to have their own offices. Many have been promoted to their positions of incompetence.
They are not bothered by bad grades because they don’t affect their salaries.
No one has stopped frustrated teachers from leaving. Size Two left and made it big in politics. He could even afford an encore of his premiership.
The Speaker of Parliament Sephiri Motanyane left teaching for politics. Watch now as he asks G4S to block MPs who want to yank Uncle Tom out of power.
Mokose was a headmaster but is now having a blast as a diplomat. Mochoboroane used to work with the chalk but he now leads a political party.
If you have remained a teacher for the rest of your life then you should not blame anyone but yourself. It’s not the world’s problem that you lack ambition.

Any parent will tell you that the only time they see the impact of a teacher is when their child is harassing them over some useless school trip.
The pressure will be coming from the teacher who wants to pinch coins off the trip fees.
They load the students in a chicken bus to come to Maseru to watch the escalator and lifts at Pioneer Mall.
As soon as the bus parks at the mall the teachers are loading their tummies with beer bought with money stolen from parents.
Those whose children attend so-called private schools (most of those schools are hovels, anyway) will tell you horror stories about endless class parties and birthday celebrations.

After school the teachers will sneak through the back gate with bags full of leftover cakes and potato chips. Pathetic thieves. Smalltime crooks.
What is shocking about this strike is that the government is allowing the teachers to continue with their tomfoolery. There is no point in keeping unhappy employees who have been striking for a year.
If Muckraker was the Education Minister she would hand them their dismissal letters with the right hand and receive applications with the left hand. Lesotho has more teachers than goats.
The government should send them packing and see if our basic education will come to a standstill.
Muckraker was taught English by a COSC graduate but here you are, imbibing her words and nodding your head.

Nka! Ichuuuuuuuuuuu!



Mokherane’s nonsonso



MUCKRAKER has been waiting for our MPs to explain why they want a M75 000 salary.

She hoped somewhere in the sewage the MPs were spraying as justification for their attempt to rob us blind was some reasonable argument.

Just something to show that there was some sort of method to their rank madness and shameless greed.

Sadly, Muckraker has been waiting for Godot because none had emitted anything showing that they carry a brain bigger than the punctuation mark that ends this sentence.

Instead, we have been treated to some of the most inane arguments proving beyond all reasonable doubt that our parliament is full to the brim with imbeciles masquerading as MPs.

Thanks to Mokherane Tsatsanyane, that one who came into parliament through the window while dressed in DC colours, we now know we are being led by slow minds.

After reminding us that MPs “run this country” and are a special breed, Tsatsanyane went to the meat of his bizarre argument.

“He! He! Mokherane is crazy, he wants M75 000! That’s what people will be saying. But I have just spent almost M5 million in my area. I bought 40 wheelchairs at Moshoeshoe II, one wheelchair costs M3 000, that means I have spent something like M300 000,” he emitted while frothing at the mouth as if someone stole his goat.

It is tempting to follow his argument to its finality just to be sure his mouth has pulled the middle finger on his brain but that is obvious.

His problem is that he just can’t do simple arithmetic.

It is impossible to spend M300 000 after buying 40 wheelchairs at M3 000 each. It can’t!

He was inflating his numbers and ego just like he wants us to pay him an inflated salary. The other possibility is that he was just entangled in the web of his lies. They say liars must have good memories. Muckraker would add that they should learn to count as well.

At that moment, someone should have told Tsatsanyane to stop telling tall tales but the man was now on fire. After all, he thought he had just gotten away with the lie that 40 multiplied by 3 000 is 300 000.

So he pushed on.

“They are happy and celebrating, He! He! Mokherane is donating wheelchairs and food parcels. In a day you can spend around M400 000 when you are an MP helping people. But tomorrow when you want an increment, they complain.”

Muckraker wanted to call Tsatsanyane to deliver some crude words but remembered that his kind is beyond redemption.

The critical question is what kind of grade he smokes. The one from Mapoteng is not that potent. It takes a special kind of high for someone who claims to be spending M400 000 a day on charity to shed a Maqalika of tears over M75 000 per month.

But his lies and hallucinations are not the crux of the matter.

The question is who invited him to be in parliament.

More precisely, who voted for him?

Expect a blank face instead of an answer because he was neither invited nor elected.

The people of Qoaling rejected him in the last election and he only sneaked into parliament via the proportional representation list.

Now this unwanted, unelected, and unelectable nonentity is telling us that M75 000 is “nothing to write home about”.

So why cry for it like a hired mourner?

Even if it’s a small amount, you still don’t deserve it here and in heaven.

Hear, hear, hear, a man who claims to have just spent “almost M5 million” in his “area” is complaining about being underpaid.

You cannot make this up.

Even if his salary is increased to M75 000, Tsatsanyane will not earn M5 million over his five years in parliament. At the current salary of M40 000, he will earn M2.4 million over five years.

There are five logical explanations for his alleged spending habits.

He could be filthy rich, extremely generous, reckless, bad with mathematics or just a pathological liar.
What is clear is that no amount of lying, screaming or flawed reasoning will help the MPs get the M75 000. This time it won’t happen.

Gone are the days when these lazybones would make threats to get away with evil deeds. There will be no increase for those freeloading impostors.

Those who feel underpaid should surrender their seats and leave us in peace. Muckraker can bet her last kobo that their absence will not be missed. Most of them can even be replaced with donkeys and there will still be no real effect on the quality of parliament’s work.

MPs who mourn about being paid less than their counterparts in South Africa are free to cross Mohokare River and contest.

As for those who believe they can jerk up their salaries to recover what they used to campaign, Muckraker says: Go hang! The ropes are on Muckraker.

Muckraker warns anyone who is even thinking of entertaining the MPs’ demands that there will be chaos in this country.

Some furniture will fly, bones broken and someone will run.
This is not a threat but a promise.

Bring it on! We are sick and tired of a few people defecating on us.

Muckraker will not be having a wet weekend because she is going to the gym. You know why. It’s about time we get fit to deal with nonsonso.

Nka! Ichuuuuuuuuuuuu

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Maretlane’s dish rubbish



Muckraker is still recovering from the Moshoeshoe Walk but her fatigue has nothing to do with the 116km she endured. The walk in the mountains – far from the rascals, perverts, thieves and pretenders of Maseru – was fun.

The pain in her muscles was inflicted by the epic incompetence she witnessed over the three-day walk. Someone should tell Thabo Maretlane to either shape up or ship out.

They say it takes at least 10 000 hours to master a skill. Maretlane has been managing the walk for 17 years but has been consistently doing a shoddy job of it. He is dependable like that.

He has one year to organise the three-day event but for some reason, only known to him, he still botches it every time.

This year he bungled spectacularly. It was as if he had spent the past 16 years mastering the art of mismanagement. By the time this year’s walk started, he was ready to deliver some top-notch shit show.

Oh shame! He brought his ‘A’ game to the mountains and stole the show while the world watched. It was a fantastic display of incompetence. 

The kind that leaves you dazed. He pushed the frontiers of mediocrity. 

Even he could not believe he was capable of sinking to such levels. 

Maretlane started dishing it out from day one. Breakfast was a croissant, a small yoghurt and a piece of dry cheese. And that was it. Off you go into the mountains, he said. 

After a few kilometres hikers were stopped for some speeches from dignitaries. 

And so they waited, waited and waited. There is nothing wrong with some delays. 

But it’s bad manners to park people in the scorching sun for hours without any explanation or apology.

Maretlane and his people were behaving as if the tortuous wait was part of the schedule. 

Yet it wasn’t the lack of communication or the roasting that got Muckraker’s goat. 

Ladies who wanted to relieve themselves had to find some hiding spot in the veld because Maretlane didn’t find it reasonable to provide mobile toilets. When nature called they had to visit a gulley or squat behind a rock. There were not many rocks big enough to cover both the face and the big bums. 

If too scared to use the gully or rock you had to ask friends to shield you from the crowd. 

And that was the source of Muckraker’s irritation. Maretlane forced Muckraker and her friends to be toilet walls. That humiliation of having to invite a congregation to a peeing session would persist for the next three days Maretlane unashamedly basked in the glory of having done something as part of our 200th Anniversary. Water was brought in lituntoana so Maretlane could be amused as we behaved like cattle at a watering hole.

Maretlane didn’t seem bothered because he was on a mission to make the most from the least effort. He had promised water and had delivered. 

 If you didn’t like how it was delivered you could tell it to the mountains or go hang. 

March on, this is not your mother’s house. Drink up and move it, lunch awaits across the mountains. After they finally dragged themselves to the lunch venue, they came face to face with the stinker Maretlane had been cooking while they dragged through mountains and valleys. 

Lunch was something that tasted like chicken but could have been easily mistaken for some newly invented type of rubber. It came with five chips, a piece of bread as hard as Weetbix and a salad that looked like it was about to pinch your nose. It was vulgar. 

Next was some fish smaller than the lemon that was supposed to season it. 

It was served with a sandwich that looked like some leftovers from last year’s walk.

The five chips and the threatening salad were there again, warning you against eating them. 

They were back again when Maretlane unveiled the foul-tasting hot dog.  

It was khemere all the way. By the way, there is nothing traditional, organic or healthy about that drink. The salt on the wound is that hikers paid M1 000 for those meals. The message was clear: we make you pay through the nose for kaka and then make you kaka in the bushes. Come again next year for Maretlane will do you dirty again!

Don’t expect Maretlane to have learned anything from that episode. 

He hasn’t learned in 17 years. 

Don’t try telling him anything. He is now too busy preparing to deliver another scandalously shoddy show next year. Muckraker will not be paying to be abused again. Never! 

Maretlane has eaten enough from her. It will take her months to relearn how to use a toilet again.

Nka! Ichuuuuuuuuuuuu


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The market of rascals



THE Market’s management is either high on something illegal or just reckless.
They could also be either proudly incompetent or simply daft.
Muckraker suspects they are high, reckless, incompetent and daft.
That is a heavy burden to carry but self-inflicted and deserved.

Their job is to feed tummies and quench thirsts but they believe they are capable of many jobs. In addition to cooking chickin, they fancy themselves to be detectives, expert witnesses, rape experts, psychologists, communication gurus, criminologists, prosecutors, CCTV analysts and many other things they conjure up in their small minds.
That much is lavishly clear from their crude statement reacting to a woman who alleges she was raped in their toilet last week.
Instead of just acknowledging the alleged incident, The Market was sweating to testify, analyse evidence, scrutinise footage and play judge.
They tell us the alleged victim arrived at the restaurant “heavily intoxicated” as if they had measured the alcohol content in her blood.
They say she had left an “unpaid bill” at another restaurant as if they were the Small Claims Court.
They claim CCTV footage shows the victim coming out of the toilets holding hands with her alleged attacker as if they are certain that the handholding was consensual and not one dragging the other. Make no mistake about the sinister motive behind those salacious details sprinkled all over the statement.
They were gathering wood for a pyre to burn the woman and her allegations.
Their demented reasoning is something like this: she could not have been raped because she was intoxicated, absconded her bill down the street and was holding hands with the alleged attacker. None of those things have been proven and they might be just shameless lies told by uncouth characters.
The point, accepted by everyone else except some nincompoops, is that The Market should not have mentioned anything about a bill or intoxication. They are not just trivialising her serious allegations but also calling her a drunk who dodges bills and lies about being raped.
They do this by telling what they believe to be a cogent tale to illustrate that her story is incredible.
Muckraker read that clumsy statement several times and each time she was further disgusted by both the writer and The Market as a business.
They say the gentleman from another restaurant who is “well known to The Market staff” claimed that the woman had left an unpaid bill. That is not some random anecdote but an attempt to justify why they allowed him into the bar after they had closed.
It could also be a flimsy attempt at saying the man could not have violated the woman because he is “well known” to them.
As soon as the narration started Muckraker knew The Market was on an evil path.
And boy, did they march with vigour.
They say while the two were discussing the unpaid bill, the victim “indicated that she needed the bathroom”. Then comes the killer line in the statement: “Moments later, the said gentleman also walked to the bathroom, where after a while they both emerged holding hands”.
The public is invited to conclude that the discussion about the unpaid bill was resolved in the toilet and the two “emerged holding hands”.
In other words, whatever was said or happened in the toilet was so mutual that a debt was settled and hands were held.
The victim blaming and bashing could have ended there but The Market was just getting started.
After social media clobbered them for their callous and inept statement, The Market came back with a second one pretending to be correcting the first one.
This time they tried to sanitise the first statement by weeding out the offensive parts but avoided withdrawing the first statement and sincerely apologising to the woman.
They forget that people will never unlearn what they learned from the first statement and are most likely to read the second statement as an update rather than a correction.
But just like that, The Market thinks they have dodged the bullet so they can go back to their cooking and notorious upselling.
Their message to women is stinging: “It’s your funeral if you run away from a bill and get raped in our toilets. We will protect ourselves and the suspects at all costs. For good measure, we will tell the public you enjoyed free drinks and got so drunk that you made allegations of rape against our friend who was only trying to get you to pay”.
Muckraker will not speculate on what happened but can say, without fear or favour, that The Market’s management are unmitigated and unrepentant rascals. Only a business managed by accredited scoundrels reacts with such brazen thuggery to allegations of rape on its premises. Muckraker didn’t say CHE accredits scoundrels but that the mischief exhibited by The Market is of such high quality that it deserves a certification of sorts and at a higher level. It’s Level 8 stuff.
Nka! Ichuuuuuuuuuuuu


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