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Welcome to the thug world



A Lesotho minister visits a Malaysian minister. They take a tour of the magnificent capital city before returning to the Malaysian minister’s house for lunch. The Mosotho minister is stunned by the opulence of the six-bedroomed house.

There are imported Italian tiles and expensive art on the walls. The furniture is custom-made.
There is a private chef, a butler and three maids. The Mosotho minister asks his host how he earned such good things.

The Malaysian takes him to the balcony.
“You see that massive road on the right and the skyscraper on the right? I was in charge of hiring the contractors and they gave me 10 percent of the total budget as a bribe,” the Malaysian minister says.
The Mosotho minister just nods and they get back to other state matters.

Three years later the Malaysian minister visits the Mosotho minister in Maseru. The local minister takes his visitor on a tour of the city before they return to his 15-bedroom home for dinner.
The Malaysian minister is shocked at the lavish house. There are gold-coated chandeliers and marble tiles. The house looks like a small hotel, with dozens of maids catering to the minister’s and his family’s needs. Outside are an Olympic size pool and a gym the size of Lehakoe.

The Malaysian asks how the Mosotho minister acquired such things. His host takes him to the balcony.
“You see that 15 storey building along Mpilo road?” the Mosotho asks his guest as he points towards the city.
“But I don’t see any such building,” said the Malaysian. “Well, there isn’t because I hired the contractors and they paid me 100 percent of the project budget as a bribe. I swallowed it all,” says the Mosotho minister.
“But why would you do that to your people,” asks the guest.

“They are my people in blood and nationality but when it comes to money we are not related. I don’t know them. And I am not alone in this stealing business. My colleagues are doing worse.”
That is the story of how our politicians loot national resources with gusto. No shame. No moderation. Just gobbling everything.

Our politicians are such pathological thieves that if they break into a shack and find nothing worth stealing they will grab the broom and dash out. They just have to take something to satiate their thieving addiction.
Little wonder we have slid down the ranks on Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index of 2018. Released this week, the index shows that our country is becoming more corrupt.

In fact it shows that corruption is worse that it was three years ago. Muckraker will not tell you how we compare to other regional countries because that is precisely what politicians will seek to do. Nyoe, nyoe, nyoe, but we are better than Malawi, Angola and Zimbabwe.

Yet the point of the index is not for us to measure ourselves against our peers. The purpose is to work towards eradicating corruption in all forms. Not because we want to improve our ranking but so we prosper as a country.
Our insolent politicians don’t care though. What however shocks Muckraker is the speed at which politicians are broke when they are booted out of office. Just look at how most congress politicians are wallowing in poverty.

Another three years out of power and they will be begging on street corners, holding placards that read: “Help! I am a former thief who squandered his fortune” and “Help! My flesh molamu ate all my money”.


No matter what happens in Professor Mahao’s court case the lessons are clear. We are learning that politics is a crude game full of brutal characters in suits.
We know that in that game people are allowed to make rough tackles and use elbows if they think they are about to lose a race. We are aware that to politicians it matters not how they win because the means justifies the end.
And so we watch in horror as Mahao is chained to a tree called technicalities so that he doesn’t run the fair race.
Meanwhile, someone is still saying: on your marks, get set and go.

You don’t have to wonder why the game has become so toxic. Whoever wins the deputy leader position is Uncle Tom’s heartbeat away from leading the party and ruling the country.
In a way you could say that Mahao was naïve to think he would be embraced with open arms.
He should have known that he is walking into a hardhat area. What he has faced over the past two months is probably only a teaser of what is going to come his way in the next few days.

Brickbats will be hurled at him and pangas will be drawn.
If he wants to come out of this fight with all limbs then he has to fight like a bull: horns locked, face flinched and a bit of manure on the back (if you did not herd cattle it’s your funeral). That is what this battle is about.
Out of this brouhaha we learn that you cannot put anything past a politician. Education is not a hindrance to thuggish behaviour. Neither is position or exposure. Nor is experience. We are dealing with an uncouth bunch that respects no rules of fairness of decorum.

Mahao should have known that the omens were against him when the party’s NEC started questioning his history in the party. He should have seen that all was not well when Uncle Tom talked about the smelly things on his loin.
Some newspaper said there was going to be a meeting between Mahao and Uncle Tom this week.
No such meeting was scheduled. There was not even any communication between the two.
If you think Uncle Tom will come down and grovel to Mahao then you are slow.

Uncle Tom has never been in the business of backing away from a fight. He fights fast, furious and rough.
He will kick you when you are down because he knows that in politics you should completely destroy your enemy, lest they gather their forces and strength to fight another day.




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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