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Oh, Ramatsella!



Ramatšella, Ramatšella, Ramatšella! Where art thou? 60!  That’s how many people rewarded him for his garrulous ways? Phew! 60! It is a scandal of epic proportions that only 60 people voted for him after all the energy he expended on firing salvos at his opponents on radio.
The last time Muckraker contested an election she got 33 votes. And that was not in a national election. It was a vote for a class monitor position at her school in Mafube.

The class had 44 students and the turnout was 100 percent. That is what is called a thunderous victory.
Ramatšella managed 60 in a constituency of over 10 000 people. That’s how unpopular he is. To put into perspective Ramatšella has 10 fingers, ten toes and 20 nails. That comes to 40. Add the pairs of ears, ears, lips, eyebrows and cheeks. You get 50.

Now add the head, nose, mouth, two legs, two bums, two feet and one belly to get to 60. That is what the man toiled for in the days he spent on the campaign trail.
It is crucial to note that Muckraker didn’t count the forehead and that’s for a valid reason. It is there that someone has scribbled the number 60 so that wherever he goes people remember his dubious distinction. Political failures must be paraded for all to see.
Mediocrity should never be hidden like the pregnancy of a schoolgirl.
By the way, it’s actually 59 votes because the other vote came from him. In saying this Muckraker assumes he had the courage and confidence to vote for himself.

There are times when you are so unpopular that you don’t even support yourself.
60! Phew! No wonder he is now on voicemail. He has been stunned into silence.

Voters have mastered the art of spanking politicians, especially those haughty ones who won’t stop picking fights over trivial matters. For weeks Muckraker has been calling on Ramatšella to come out of his hiding.

Some malicious people have whispered to Muckraker that he won’t be coming out soon because he is trying to delete the ‘60’ mark from his forehead.
They say he is using scouring powder, bleach, wire brush and a grinder but the ‘60’ tattoo just won’t go.

He should just quit because that brand is his to keep. Perhaps he should patent the number because he now owns it. It’s now his trademark.
No one shall utter the number ‘60’ without a licence from Ramatšella. The hour now has 59 minutes and the minute has 59 seconds.
Who are we to deny such an honourable man a title he has earned with distinction?

It’s time to stop the brouhaha and mop the crimson tears over Tlohelang Aumane’s defection. Indeed, the Democratic Congress (DC)’s bigots have screamed and bellowed enough. Adultery.

Someone should have the guts to tell them to shut the hell up and get on with the business of being his Majesty’s loyal opposition.
This mourning party over Aumane’s political infidelity is just a fart to be blown away by the wind pronto, for it has no use to this country.
So what if an MP could not resist the charms of another party? Nyoe, nyoe, nyoe, the young man is a thief. Nyoe, nyoe, nyoe, he cheated the people of Semena.

You are a disloyal moron, said some DC diehard who probably cannot even spell her name under pressure. There is a symbiotic link between illiteracy and loudness.

The whole ruckus is just some nonsense manufactured by a hoard of villagers whose only claim to fame is to sing louder and gyrate with unbridled gusto at political rallies.

Now that the June 3 election has made them redundant they are looking for a new vocation. In crying over Aumane’s defection they think they have found a new job.

If you are pissed by what Muckraker has just said grab a huge cup of water and sip slowly while you rest your behind.
You have a lot to learn before you start calling Muckraker a foulmouthed woman with an unhealthy penchant for insulting her elders. So let the lessons begin.

The first one is that Aumane has not done anything treasonous. He has murdered no ones. What he has done was done by many political leaders, some repeatedly so. Almost all political parties in this country have some connection to the BCP. Yeh, I said it. The BCP is the father and mother of all political parties.

Our political landscape is teeming with BCP surrogates masquerading as the real McCoy. There are parties that defected from parties that had defected from the BCP.

History, the subject canned by some short-sighted technocrats, shows ours to be a country replete with defectors.
The other words for defectors are traitors, turncoats, renegades, rebels and apostates. There is not a single party in this country that was not formed by someone who was coming from another party.
We can sanitise it all we want but the point remains that defection is the staple of our politics. So go ahead and cast the first stone on Aumane if you are not a defector or a member of a party formed by a defector.

The second lesson is that there is nothing illegal Aumane did. True, he could have done it with finesse but that doesn’t mean he peed on any section of the constitution.

Moving between parties is allowed for real MPs. Notice here that Muckraker says uses the word “real” because there are some fake ones who sneaked into parliament through the PR list, that one that can be cobbled up by party gurus in their bedrooms and nocturnal meetings.
Those on the PR list are beneficiaries of a generous system designed to reward failure and mediocrity. A system conjured to cuddle and flatter losers.
More like saying you are the last in the class but you can’t go back home without a little something because your mother might think she is wasting her money.  Muckraker digressed, and justifiably so because this PR business always gets her goat.
So back to the legality of Aumane’s political treachery we return. Our constitution, as emaciated and shallow as it is, says real MPs can hop into any political bed.

It doesn’t even limit the number of times they can jump because its writers understood that there is no way to control how many times a person can change their mind. If you have never changed your mind then you have no right to be holding on to that brain of yours. Rather give it to those who can put it to full use.  The third lesson has to do with the stinking nature of politics. To call Aumane a thief of votes will be to say that politics is governed by some sort of moral code. That’s just naïve.

If Aumane waited until he won the constituency to jump into the enemy’s field that means he schemed well.
If he was persuaded to move after the election result then that means he could smell an opportunity.
How long was he going to wait to become a Minister in a DC government? He wasn’t even on the waiting list of MPs to be considered for cabinet positions if the DC had won the election.

That’s because there are people who have been ministers since donkeys could write love letters and wink at each other.
Size Two has been microwaving the same old deadwood as if this country has only a 100 people.
Given the reality that there is a cabal of people who thought they were born to be Ministers Muckraker wonders what chance a 42-year-old political upstart had of becoming a minister. Cabinet positions had been captured.

The fourth lesson is intricately linked to the plain truth in our myopic politics. Opposition MPs don’t get things done. Of course they will shout and heckle ministers in parliament but on real policy issues they are nonentities. Their opinions and contributions to the making of policies are marginal, if not none at all. They don’t get to twist things to favour their constituencies. They offer their supporters nothing but a voice in parliament.
They don’t even have control over a fato-fato list.

Would the people of Qacha’s Nek enjoy decent roads if Size Two and his two cahoots were not permanent features in government?
We can ask the same in Machache where Mokola pampered the villagers with electricity and even street lights.
You many fume but that is the nature of our politics. Proximity to government matters.

Let’s now turn to the fifth and last issue which also happens to be thorny. Does what Aumane did amount to stealing?
It depends on how you look at it. If he used the DC as a log to cross a flooded Mohokare River to join the AD then he nicked. If Mokola whispered sweet little nothings into his ears after the election then he should not be in the dock.  But before we get further along this path of suppositions let’s get one thing clear: Stealing is not illegal in this country. Yeah, I said it.  People steal every time and they are celebrated instead of being locked up.

The real thieves continue to perambulate the streets while mere pickpockets are shoved into jails. Until those who looted government money through that dubious Bidvest deal are doing time behind bars no one should raise a finger against Aumane.
Aumane probably trousered some votes but that is not the worst thing that has happened in this country. There have been humongous scandals in which millions have vanished into thin air.

Aumane will have to account to his people in Semena. Whether he convinces them or leaves them irate is his business. As for the leadership in the DC he simply has to ask them to go look themselves in the mirror and ask themselves if their anger about his floor-crossing is genuine.
If they do take his advice they will see real hypocrites in the mirrors. Please tlohelang Aumane comrades.

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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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The Market of nonsense



You are wrong if you think The Market’s statement about the alleged rape in their toilets is just terrible public relations or some error of judgment.
The statement reflects society’s attitude towards rape victims and women in general. That much is clear in the statement’s tone.

The statement says the alleged victim was “heavily intoxicated” but the truth is that its author was drunk from both something illegal and prejudice.
Even someone who had drunk all the beer, ciders, cocktails, whisky, gin and brandy in The Market would not come up with such a statement. This is top-notch BS rehearsed over years and expertly mastered. The Makhadzi dance to the alleged victim’s trauma.
But there is more to show their contempt for the alleged victim.
The one-page statement mentions the alleged victim’s name five times. Five!
It has 11 sentences and mentions the victim’s name in five of them.
It is unethical to mention rape victims by name but The Market did it anyway because they probably wanted to remind everyone that she is “that woman”.
You can bet your last January kobo that some dunderheads will justify naming her on the basis that she had already identified herself by posting the incident on social media. Nonsense!
The Market had no right to identify her by name in their statement.
They didn’t seek her consent. And even if they did, it’s still unethical.
To see that mentioning her name five times was not an innocent mistake you have to check how many times the statement mentions her alleged attacker‘s name. Zero!
This is despite that the alleged victim had revealed his name, or at least part of it, on social media. They call him “a staff member of one of the establishments at Maseru” and a “gentleman”.
They don’t even say the man is from one of the establishments at Maseru Mall because that would instantly narrow the list and expose him.
So they resort to saying “Maseru” as if Maseru City is synonymous with Maseru Mall. The idea was to keep his identity as vague as possible. Even if the alleged victim had not mentioned his name The Market knew him because the statement says he is “well known to The Market staff”.
There is a method to the madness here. The Market was at pains to protect the alleged attacker while loudly shouting the victim’s name. Ideally, neither the victim nor the suspect should have been mentioned by name. She is a victim of rape and the suspect was yet to appear in court.
Those with an eye for detail might have also noticed that The Market unashamedly tries to pretend to have suddenly discovered the woman’s rape allegations on her Facebook page. She reported to their staff soon after the alleged incident.
Muckraker will end this depressing story with one more observation.
The Market’s statement mentions “toilets” as if they have many toilets.
The reality is that it’s one toilet for men and women. The main entrance is the same and so is the washing area.
On busy nights you can use either of the cubicles. Muckraker has seen men budging into the women’s cubicle and vice-versa. “Hona le motho!” is a common scream in that toilet.
Muckraker has bumped into men with open zips and women pulling up their pants in the washing area. Women fixing their bras bump heads with men tucking in their shirts.
Whoever designed that toilet has a brain the size of the punctuation mark at the end of this sentence.
There are no words for those who thought it fit to be used by their patrons.
Nka! Ichuuuuuuuuuuuu


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Is Kabi a real lekoloane?



Is Kabi a real lekoloane? That is not a trick question so don’t bother scratching your stressed head.
Even the goats in Matatiele, where he is alleged to have been initiated, know he is not a real lekoloane.
They know what he did last December and are as disgusted as the other makoloane who rightly feel he has cheated his way to the title.

The Matatiele goats know that other initiates had to spend at least five weeks at the initiation school to earn the honour of being called a lekoloane.
The leadership of the national initiation committee says claiming to be a lekoloane after just 72 hours at an initiation school is “unacceptable”.
Muckraker will call it fraud until Kabi proves otherwise.
Muckraker is not saying this to humiliate Kabi. He is a good fella but the stubborn reality is that he didn’t complete the course and therefore has no business pretending to be qualified.
It’s not as if Kabi entered the school with credits from another school. There was no transfer letter.
If there is a letter he should name his former principal.
He cannot claim to have attended initiation classes through Zoom and then went to complete the course with some practicals for 72 hours. He didn’t do distance learning because initiation schools are not UNISA.
There is no crash course in initiation school. That he qualified for mature entry doesn’t mean he could just sneak into the school hours before graduation and then claim to be a certified lekoloane.
The issue is not whether Kabi believes he is a real lekoloane because that doesn’t matter. Being in a plane doesn’t make you a pilot even if you scream to be regarded as one.
Muckraker has visited NUL’s law school but cannot claim to be a lawyer. She has joined the wires on her phone charger but is no electrician.
The real Makoloane are furious because he has cheated his way to their title and wants to be treated as their equal. They are right. Yet what Kabi has done is more serious than stealing a title. He has corrupted the institution of initiation.
He had no excuse for pulling the 72-hour trick at the initiation school.
Parliament was closed, they had dismally failed to topple Uncle Sam and his party is dead. He cannot claim he was busy running the ABC because Feselady and her hubby are still in charge.
For the past week, Muckraker has been wondering why Kabi could deliberately inflict such dishonour on himself.
The answer is that Kabi is entitled like other politicians. He wants to have the best for his minimum effort.
They want to earn the best perks but still claim to be the people’s humble servants. They want the people to vote for them for merely being present or promising something.
When held to the highest standards they point to the incompetence of other politicians.
Their favourite refrain is “at least….”
Kabi desperately wanted to be a lekoloane but was not prepared to put in the work.
The second part of the answer is that Kabi, like other politicians, thought he could get away with it. It’s an attitude informed by the general contempt politicians have for those they believe are beneath them.
It’s just that he has underestimated the resolve of other initiates to protect their institution from fraudsters and imposters.
Now he will be remembered as a political leader who was caught, pants down, masquerading as a lekoloane. The national initiation committee has said he is not wanted near an initiation school and if he is seen in the vicinity he will be forced to repeat the course.
Muckraker thinks “repeat” is not the right word. He will be starting from Grade 1, doing the ‘a, e, i, o, u’ of initiation school.
Kabi is worse than a high school dropout because dropouts don’t show up for graduation.
He is worse than those who insist on using the honorary doctorate title because, at least, that title is given voluntarily. There is nothing called an honourary lekoloane. You are either or not.
Those who cheat in exams are way better than him because, at least, they would have attended classes and qualified for exams but are just too daft. Kabi didn’t attend classes or take the exam.
He just arrived when others were rehearsing their graduation songs, got himself smeared with ochre and proudly walked to the podium to be capped.
Kabi is welcome to call himself a lekoloane but he will be a lekoloane in his head and not to anyone else.
He might as well have spent the 72 hours plotting to topple Uncle Sam because he will never be a lekoloane even if he smears himself with a Maqalika of ochre and recites initiation songs a million times.
A man who is not initiated is called a leqai but what do we call one who tries to cheat their way to initiation?
Let’s call him a kabi. And that is a real title because it is earned. Finally, oh finally, Kabi has invented something useful. Hooray!
Nka! Ichuuuuuuuuuuuu


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