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The dead donkey



THE Dakota Indians in the United States have always known that when your donkey is dead the best strategy is to dismount.
The trouble with politicians in Africa, especially in Lesotho, is that they refuse to accept that the donkey is dead.
Instead, they scurry around for solutions that involve the dead donkey. They will buy new whips to flog the donkey, hire a new rider or appoint a special committee to look into ways to resuscitate the donkey.
When those fail, they attempt to reclassify the donkey as unconscious, harness more donkeys to improve the dead donkey’s efficiency or appoint the dead donkey to supervise other donkeys.
When all fails they will find a consultant to tell them that the dead donkey is cost effective because it doesn’t require much upkeep.

They will keep hiring and firing consultants until they find one that recommends that they continue mounting the dead donkey because replacing it will be expensive.
Uncle Tom’s dead donkey is the old executive committee.
That donkey died in February but he has been scrambling to revive it for the past five months. And that dead donkey has been playing a central role in its revival. It is has been advising Uncle Tom on ways to breathe life into it.

“Get the first aid kit. Hurry up, old man,” the donkey has said to Uncle Tom.
“Get me a specialist doctor.”
“Antibiotics will work wonders.”
“Come on, no doctor has declared me dead yet.”
“Ask the court to look at the circumstances surrounding my so-called death.”
“Maybe we should negotiate the terms of my demise.”
The old man of Lesotho’s politics is hoping for a Lazarus moment.

Last week three High Court judges declared that this donkey is as dead as a dodo.
But against all advice and wisdom Uncle Tom remains glued to this ghost of a donkey, furiously whipping it.
Some have opined that perhaps this dead donkey has long ceased to belong to Uncle Tom. They say it’s in a chariot driven by some stunner somewhere in Maseru West.
They might be right but the fact is that it’s Uncle Tom who insists that he has the title deeds to this dead donkey. It’s therefore his dead donkey to beat to resurrection.
And he has defended the dead donkey with fury.
Just this week he fired off letters to dismiss a couple of living and healthy donkeys that have been waiting for him for several months.

These are the same donkeys the courts have certified to be alive and kicking.
Yet Uncle Tom remains adamant that his dead donkey is still relevant to his journey.
This is despite that Ntsekele, the man who is the head of the dead donkey, had quickly conceded that the donkey is finished.
So here we are: the lashing of a perished donkey continues. Uncle Tom’s arrogance would be hilarious were it not doubly sad. He is clutching at straws to save the dead donkey.
Muckraker’s grandpa used to tell her that when you are tired you don’t think straight.
“Take a breather my girl,” he would say.
Uncle Tom is tired and is making silly mistakes.
Sometimes he forgets his own words.

Three weeks ago he was telling his followers that Professor Mahao is not a member of the ABC. This week he conveniently forgot those words and announced that he was expelling Professor Mahao from the party.
He is firing Professor Mahao from a party he never joined. Phew!
Someone pass Muckraker a hankie.
All this selective amnesia is aimed at resurrecting his dead donkey.

Unable to resuscitate the donkey, Uncle Tom is now spanking every one.
Last week his whip landed on Court of Appeal President Justice Mosito.
Justice Mosito was basking on a heater at his office when his clerk brought in the letter from Uncle Tom. Uncle Tom was telling him, in a few words, that he should leave his job at the National University of Lesotho (NUL) if he wants to remain president.
You could see from the letter that Uncle Tom was accusing Justice Mosito of moonlighting as the president of the apex court.

He said when he appointed him he was under the impression that he would relinquish all jobs in the country.
His reasoning is that Justice Mosito’s impartiality is likely to be compromised if he holds other jobs.
To be fair, Uncle Tom has a point.
The only problem is that he is pretending to have just discovered that Justice Mosito also works at the NUL. Where was he all this time when Justice Mosito was freelancing as Court of Appeal president?
In any case the whole process seems to have been contrived to put the judge in a fix.
It is a notorious fact that a Court of Appeal president is not paid a salary but an allowance based on cases heard.
If there is no session then he doesn’t get paid. The fewer the cases he hears, the smaller the allowance. That simply means that the Court of Appeal President is like a freelancer.
You have to hand it to Uncle Tom for his ability to miraculously forget the things he says.

Muckraker vividly remembers what Uncle Tom said in two affidavits to support Justice Mosito’s legal fight to be reinstated as Court of Appeal president.
In those glowing affidavits Uncle Tom waxed lyrical about Justice Mosito’s industry.
He said the judge was so resourceful that he could work as a judge and still teach at NUL.
May we never forget that Uncle Tom literally moved mountains to reappoint Justice Mosito after he was spanked out of office by Size Two.
It was a fight Uncle Tom was determined to win at all cost.

You would be forgiven for thinking that Justice Mosito had promised to surrender all his allowances to Uncle Tom when he was reappointed.
Yet barely six months later Uncle Tom is brandishing a threatening letter.
It’s a joke bereft of a punch line. It’s not funny but you laugh because the one who shares it looks utterly silly for having thought its funny.
Uncle Tom must feel betrayed by Justice Mosito. He fought to reappoint Justice Mosito when everyone thought it was a lost cause.

He must have thought Justice Mosito will return the favour by being a pliable judge like that sister who is now specializing in having her judgements overturned by the Court of Appeal.
Muckraker always knew that Uncle Tom would regret this decision.
Now watch as Justice Mosito bites their behinds.
Justice Mosito cannot be domesticated.

Nka! Ichuuuuuuuuuuu!



Feel Makhalanyane’s pain



THUSO Makhalanyane, the Abia MP, is probably still nursing bruises and aching muscles after being roughed up by the police at a roadblock.

He claims the police beat and dragged him after he objected to their attempt to impound his car over a missing rear number plate.

Makhalanyane says even after he explained that he is an MP, the police strangled him and tore his trousers. They smashed his phone before locking him in a holding cell until another MP intervened to secure his release on the same day.

“I also have bruises on my knees. My body is still in pain,” he claimed.

Muckraker sympathises with Makhalanyane but sees this as a teachable moment for him. Hearing him mourn, Muckraker could not help but sense that Makhalanyane expected some special treatment from our thuggish police because he is an MP.

“If they arrest an MP like that you can imagine what they do to ordinary citizens,” Makhalanyane said in a newspaper interview, glaringly oblivious to what he was implying. Ordinary citizens? Phew!
At that moment, Muckraker was tempted to say ba u file ntho eo u nts’o e batla.

Not because he deserved the harassment and the beating. No! It’s just that he is a blabbermouth. It’s not clear who he was inviting to “imagine” how the police arrest “ordinary citizens”. Suffice it to say most ‘ordinary citizens’ don’t need to imagine police brutality because they see and experience it every day.

Everyone knows someone who has been harassed by those thugs in blue.

Makhalanyane’s people in Abia have always known the police to be roughnecks.

They have probably told Makhalanyane of their ordeal with the police. Yet there was never a time he raised the issue of police brutality in parliament.

He has not raised a motion to discuss the dozens of people killed by the police.

But when he was spanked by the police at a roadblock he clambered the tallest mountain to scream about police brutality. He was on radio stations and in newspapers, crying about the police mishandling him. He cried in parliament too.

It’s not that Makhalanyane doesn’t care about those who have been beaten, tortured and killed by the police.

It’s just that he cares about himself more.

As if the people matter but he matters more.

He knows some people have been killed by the police but the serious issue now is that his knees are bruised and his body is in pain.

It is those bruises and aching muscles that are worth discussing in parliament.

Now you know what matters to him and what keeps him awake at night.

It’s not and it will never be you.

Nka! Ichuuuuuuuuuuuu


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Special rascals



Hear, hear, hear! Parliament had an important discussion last week.

The agenda was not unemployment, hunger, corruption, poverty or climate change.
It’s your problem if you think those issues matter.

Our MPs were busy with something special. They were pushing the Speaker to ensure they get the red number plates as a matter of urgency.

MP Thuso Makhalanyane told the Speaker that the MPs wanted their green number plates replaced with the red ones.

The red ones are for ministers and judges. He was supported by Mokhothu Makhalanyane who said “parliament should help them iron out the issue of MPs’ number plates”.

“They (green plates) are not dignified and respected in the eyes of those who see them,” Mokhothu Makhalanyane said.

He said the MPs had since removed the green plates on their cars “because they are not respected”.

“Maybe you will not understand, Mr Speaker, because you use the X number plates,” he said.

There are three things to note from that discussion. The first is that it happened because Thuso Makhalanyane had been harassed by the police at a roadblock weeks earlier.

The second is that the discussion happened days after the gruesome murder of five people in Fobane. Third, the MPs were complaining about number plates in the year of a severe drought and massive job losses.

Did Muckraker say three? No, she lied. As the MPs were discussing their number plates the unemployment rate was galloping, inflation sprinting, hunger stalking the people, poverty hatching its eggs in the villages and famo gangs killing for fun.

And Basotho were not getting passports or IDs.

The lesson here is that you can always count on people to be selfish. It’s not Muckraker’s problem that school, church, village pitsos and family have not taught you this reality. People are almost always motivated by self-interest.

That their actions sometimes benefit you is coincidental.

The reality is that their actions were never meant to benefit you but themselves.

That is why Muckraker has always been cynical of politicians to be passionate about serving the people. Cynicism is the beginning of wisdom.

So when the newly elected RFP MPs threatened to transform our lives Muckraker knew they were just blue lies told by people still too shy to stuff their mouths while the masses who elected them starve.

It was only a matter of time before the selfishness kicked him and they succumbed to their self-interest.

Muckraker hopes you don’t need to be reminded that after spending an hour discussing their number plates the MPs claimed their daily allowances that were paid by you. Ouch!

Nka! Ichuuuuuuuuuuuu


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Tšeole and his beard



SOME things don’t need debate or consultation to settle.

It is a notorious fact that Molise Tšeole never had the skills, manners or character to be an ambassador.

That post has always been miles beyond his competency and dignity.

Even if he had been trained and refined for as many years as the hairs in his thick beard, Tšeole would still be too rough and raw to be a diplomat.

That this DC jukebox was jumped up to be Lesotho’s ambassador to Canada is a reflection of the appointer’s poor judgement or the pits to which we had sunk as a country.

It took a special brand of recklessness to pick Tšeole from the two million Basotho.

The kind of choice you make when high on something more potent than the Mapoteng grade.

It should be criminal for anyone, sober or stoned, to appoint an empty head like Tšeole to represent the country even in a farting tournament.

Imagine that anyone who met Tšeole in Canada was made to believe he was a reflection of us as a people.

Not just a reflection but the cream of what Lesotho has to offer the world. Holy dung!


The thought of anyone seeing Tšeole as the crème de la crème of Lesotho gives Muckraker a running tummy.

The man should not be the ambassador of anything. Not even a stokvel or a boozers’ team.

He should not even represent himself. The chap was beyond redemption.

That is why Muckraker was thrilled when his uncultured fingers and slow mind connived to post some tosh on Facebook in April. He started the fire and his roasting was about to start.

He said this “government of rich people” sees “the poor as nothing”.

They, he added with glee, had looted “all the funds meant to help the people” and shared it among themselves.

“They” being Uncle Sam and his partners allegedly munching what belongs to the poor.

He just sprayed the allegation without evidence and pretended he had done nothing wrong.

It is not clear what had pissed him and his beard so much that they could not resist the temptation to post their way into trouble.

The clapback from Uncle Sam’s government was as instant as it was thunderous.

Within days, Tšeole and his beard were fighting for their job before a disciplinary panel.

Muckraker has heard an audio clip in which Tšeole keeps disrupting the hearing with rowdy interjections.

All that drama amounted to nothing because the panel found him guilty and recommended his firing.

Hours later, Tšeole and his beard were reading a letter ordering them to wrap up their affairs and come home.

He claims he will fight in court but Muckraker thinks he and his beard should just save themselves the trouble and find their way home.

It might also save them time, money and the morsel of dignity they might have acquired from being called “ambassador”.

Whether his Facebook allegations against the government are true or not is not the point.

He could be right but that was not why he was dragged to a hearing

He wasn’t fired for lying but for being a blabbermouth who bites the hand that feeds him.

And this is not about freedom of expression as some dimwits have been quick to claim.

You cannot publicly call your employer a selfish, cruel, thieving cabal and still expect to keep your job. Someone wiser would have started loading their ha re eng Thaba-Tseka soon after clicking ‘post’.

But Tšeole is the gold standard of clowns. ISO-certified stuff. He thought he could get away with such mischief.

Muckraker is relieved that Tšeole and his beard are returning home.

But she cannot get over the fact that we have no way of undoing the damage this charlatan and beard has caused to our reputation as a people. Many people now think we are the same as Tšeole and his beard.


Nka! Ichuuuuuuuuuuuu


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