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Muckraker

The sad song from NUL

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THERE is a song for almost everything. Greed, love, envy, hate, death, heartbreak and so forth.
Even thievery, fornication and hanky-panky.
Remember the hanky-panky song that went like this: Khali, khali, khali ke tsamaea ka nthoena ea ka. Ha u ntso tsila-tsila ke tsamaea ka nthoena ea ka.
Muckraker once sang that song at a village kraal and was rewarded with a thundering slap from an uncle.
She saw stars.

Here is a story and a song for it. First, the story.
Some several moons back, five scientists from the National University of Lesotho (NUL) started working on a potential drug for Covid-19. We were told these were just passionate scientists collaborating for the greater good.
Chuffed, our hands got sore as we clapped to cheer them on.
A minister who would be hard-pressed to tell the difference between a burette and a thermometer even said something about it.

The drug was sent to South Africa for testing. The results showed that it had potential to be used as a Covid-19 cure.
You would think such news would encourage the team to work harder to get the drug approved.
But this is Lesotho. A country where everyone should have the ‘G’ initial on their birth certificate.
The ‘G’ being for the second name which is Greed.
The scientists are now fighting over ownership of the concoction.
The project has now run aground as the scientists quarrel like hyenas that have found a rotting carcass.

Which reminds Muckraker of a song.
It was composed when villagers in Qaqatu discovered an elephant that had fallen into a hole.
Seeing that this was meat for the whole year, the villagers stoned the elephant until it died.
Then they started pulling out the giant as they sang to keep their spirit up.
Ahe tlou ea rona. Aho bana ba rona ba sa tla ja ba khore. Hoo tlou ea rona batho. They were at it for hours until the animal was just a few inches from pulling it out.

Then, out of the blue, one man changed the song: Ahe tlou ea ka. Aho bana ba ka ba sa tla ja ba khore. Hoo tlou ea ka batho. The other villagers responded in unison: U re tlou ea hao? U re tlou ea hao?
The man kept singing: Ehlile ke tlou ea ka. Le mpa le nthusa ho e nyolla ka sekoting.

Ahe ha e le ea hao, e nyolle re bone ha e le ea hao,” the villagers sang as they let go of the elephant and started going back home. The man was left stuck with his irretrievable brisket.
The project died and the tonnes of meat rot in the hole.
The papa ka moroho persisted in the village.
It was lepu after lepu while the elephant decayed.

Nka! Ichuuuuuuuuuuu!

muckraker.post@gmail.com

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Muckraker

‘Back to school’ nonsense

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Whoever started this ‘Back to School’ ritual will not see heaven.

It is one pointless shindig. You have breasted women looking silly after forcing their huge frames into tiny uniforms.

You have bearded men harassing small shorts and their bushy legs molesting grey stocks.

Their leg hairs are peeping through the socks. Tummies at war with undersized white or sky blue shirts. The blazers are under stress.

By afternoon the adult ‘students’, still in their overwhelmed uniforms, are gulping beer and smoking weed.

None is yet to explain the real motive behind the charade.

Muckraker’s mini-survey among the uniformed bellies yielded nothing substantial to explain why some adults find pleasure in such nonsense.

Some said it’s meant to inspire young ones by showing that those now working were once students. Which is to say the young ones should work hard to get to where the old ones are. Phew!

Yet that point is quickly invalidated when the adults in uniform behave like rascals and drink themselves senseless.

If the point is to inspire then companies that want to have useful “Back to school” events should insist on graduation gowns, not Peka High School or Methodist High School uniforms.

Change the level from secondary school to tertiary and the excitement will evaporate.

And if adults are nostalgic about their high school days, maybe, just maybe, they should write LGCSE Mathematics exams. How about simple Sesotho compositions?

Muckraker will volunteer to be an invigilator.

Yet even that too will not do much to inspire the young ones who know that most of the old ones are simply failures merely getting by. The truth is that most of the old ones don’t inspire any confidence or ambition.

Few can claim to be ideal role models. There is very little to like or admire about their lives.

Most adults need to go back to school, real school, to relearn basic manners.

Many have spent years giving education a bad name by being functionally illiterate and bungling simple tasks for which they receive wages.

There is very little evidence that some of those who join the ‘Back to School’ boloney have ever been to school.

If you think Muckraker is being malicious just look at your colleagues. Turn your head slowly.

Oh yes, that dimwit pretending to be busy in the corner is watching porn.

And that one…yes that one. She likes talking about Muvhango during work hours.

That one in a floral dress takes days to finish a simple task.

That one in the white shirt cannot spell his name under pressure.

Yes, that one in the blue skirt still hasn’t finished that report she was supposed to submit in January 2019.

That short one is on a final warning after he brought a fake sick note for the fourth time in three months.

That chatterbox drunk in the other corner doesn’t like paying his daughter’s school fees. He goes missing for five days after getting paid. He still thinks he is smart though because no one tells him that he is an unmitigated moron.

And the tall chap from the corner office is a pervert who likes giving female colleagues indecent hugs. He talks too much but his only certificate to get the job was a political party membership card.

And that yellowbone from accounts spends more time gossiping instead of accounting for petty cash. That chubby fellow who is always snoring on his desk only comes alive when it’s time to discuss office parties.

He once had a bout of depression after losing the election for the company’s entertainment committee.

The management had to persuade him to withdraw his urgent High Court application to challenge the election results.

He has been chairman of the entertainment committee for the past five years because no one dares to challenge him. Everyone knows what that position means to him.

Nka! Ichuuuuuuuuuuu!

muckraker.post@gmail.com

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Muckraker

Just drive it!

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Muckraker was 13 when she discovered a perfect way to fix phapharing blabbermouths who are clever by half.

The learning tool was a 16-year-old cousin who had come with his parents to Mafube for Christmas.

Nearly every uncle, aunt, nephew and cousin were at Muckraker’s grandmother’s house.

The yard was packed with cars.

Somewhere between drinking Oros and munching some drumsticks, Muckraker decided she didn’t like the cousin.

He was a big-headed fella who frowned upon the rural folks like Muckraker. He would not shut up about things Muckraker and her kind had never seen or received in their ears.

Nyoe, nyoe, Santa Barbra. Blah, blah VCR.

Nyoe, nyoe Michael Jackson.

Nyoe, nyoe Kingsway and Apollo lights.

His bragging was going fine until, out of the blue, he claimed to be a driver. Bingo!

That was the moment Muckraker had prayed for the whole week.

There it was… a chance to kick the bragging empty head off his high horse. And so the trap was set.

Muck: You are lying, you cannot drive anything!

Cousin: I can! I even drove my father’s Mercedes Benz on the way here.

Muck: You mean this Benz parked here now?

Cousin: Yes.

Muck: Prove it! Go take the keys from your father and come drive the car a little bit.

So cousin hurries to his father and tricks him into handing over his keys.

He comes back with a spring in his step, jumps in and starts the car.

It’s not long before Muckraker’s wish comes true.

Cousin raves the engine and rams into an aunt’s car. Boom!

He reverses into our granny’s kitchen and then turns into another uncle’s Cressida as he fights the steering wheel. Boom!

Now he is shocked by his incompetence as if he didn’t know he is incompetent. He turns right and smashes into the nearby tree. Boom!

He battles the steering wheel until he parks the car on top of the VIP toilet. Booooooom!

Her wishes granted, Muckraker sprints to tell the father of his son’s epic disaster. The car is a total wreck.

The furious father drags the shocked and teary cousin through the window and gives him a thorough beating.

The cousin was no driver but just a fast-talking charlatan who could not drive even a wheelbarrow.

Muckraker had proven that by merely daring the impostor to act on his lie. He was a problem to be fixed and Muckraker had fixed him.

Never argue with people who claim to be good at something.

Instead, just give them a chance to prove themselves.

Everyone deserves a chance to make a fool of themselves. That is what they mean when they talk about ‘equal opportunity’.

So where is Muckraker going with this?

Well, Uncle Sam and his RFP claimed they could drive this country to prosperity faster than you can say ‘Khotso, Pula, Nala’.

And what has that got to do with Muckraker’s cousin who claimed to be an expert driver. If you know you know.

If you don’t get the drift you need prayers.

Soon they will be blaming the previous gang for giving them an engineless car.

Nka! Ichuuuuuuuuuuu!

muckraker.post@gmail.com

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Muckraker

Zeroes for Zaly

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There is something special about Nonkululeko Zaly.

Muckraker is yet to decide if she is just a magnet for trouble or a loose cannon. The only time you hear about her is when there is some trouble brewing or she is throwing punches. Nothing about performance or competence. Just drama.

Either way, that is her business. Sometimes a woman has to swing some punches and shout, especially when her bread is threatened.

What however amuses Muckraker is Zaly’s confusion, hypocrisy and lack of shame. The past three weeks have shown that she is capable of all three at the same time and in equal measure.

First the confusion. She filed an urgent High Court application to block Uncle Sam from booting her out of her PS position.

Her case sounded cogent until she admitted, in her affidavit, that she had not received the termination letter from Uncle Sam. That left the judge’s head spinning, wondering whether she was dealing with a real or dubious letter.

Zaly said her “attention was brought to the letter” and she galloped to the High Court.

Then the hypocrisy. While she was fighting for her job Zaly was busy suspending Retšelisitsoe Nko, the beleaguered boss of the Lesotho Tourism Development Corporation (LTDC), for being involved in a shooting incident.

She was doing exactly the same thing she was fighting against in her own case. While complaining that she was being fired without a hearing Zaly was busy suspending Nko without a hearing. She still held on to her job when she was facing allegations of corruption yet was quick to suspend Nko based on allegations. Phew!

The circumstances were similar but Zaly reached different conclusions.

Then there is the lack of shame. Even after ‘catching wind’ of her imminent dismissal, Zaly continued writing letters to Nko to inflict the same pain she was fighting to avoid in her government job.

Her dismissal letter from Uncle Sam is dated January 11 but she wrote a “show cause” letter to Nko on January 13. Zaly should learn to smell her armpits fast.

Muckraker is not saying Nko is a saint in this case. His phafa is still being prepared. So far Muckraker’s inquiries about the incident are pointing to the fact that he might just be an educated rascal that should be nowhere near any parastatal, especially one dealing with tourism. Let the leg heal and Muckraker will spank that Maqalika of pride and ego out of him.

Nka! Ichuuuuuuuuuuu!

muckraker.post@gmail.com

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