Episode IV – A New Hope

Episode IV because we don’t really count Kgalema Motlanthe. Sorry, Kgalema.
Don’t @ me. 

And so, pushed right to the very edge, refusing to jump, and defiantly telling us that the fall wouldn’t hurt him anyway, JZ finally stepped off into the abyss.

It certainly appears that Zuma is/was rotten to the core. And what becomes of that down the line is yet to be seen. In the meantime, South Africa is celebrating, and with good reason.

But then, perhaps we should remember the positivity with which the new dawn of a Zuma Presidency was viewed back in 2009.

And look how that worked out…

So, while I’m all about hope and optimism, and there’s always that background feeling of “well, he can’t be as bad as what we’ve just been through” (notwithstanding that Thabo topped an estimated 330,000 people through his wonky HIV policies), we do need to go into this with our eyes slightly wider open this time, as we were warned from an Ecuadorian broom cupboard in London almost immediately.

Of course, It’s worth noting that Wikileaks is full of BS and Julian is far from squeaky clean as well. No. I’m not linking. Do your own hard work.

I think the message I’m trying to purvey here is “Keep Smiling, But Trust No-One“.

And not just in politics.

That Monologue

Deeply corrupt President and all-round infected haemorrhoid Jacob Zuma has just refused to resign during his near hour long rambling monologue on SABC.

He says that the ANC has given him no reasons for his recall.

And he’s right. They haven’t.

Because he knows full well that, while there are plenty (or more) of those reasons, the ANC Top 6 et al. can’t publicly talk about them, because then we’d have every good right to ask why on earth they were supporting him right up until last week.

No resignation. He’s going down in flames. And now we’re all wondering who he’s going to take with him.

This was never going to be pretty, but it now seems that it’s going to be uglier than we could ever have imagined.

Delicious.

The DAMH excuse

[accent=”Yorkshire”] When I were a lad [/accent], I always used to scoff at the kids that turned up to school claiming that their dog had eaten their homework. Not only was it the most obvious cliché, but it was also wholly unbelievable. Dogs don’t eat homework. Dogs eat dog food, human food, bones and – sometimes – socks. Sheets of A4 covered in conjugated French verbs don’t make the grade. Literally.

Je mange
Tu manges
Il/Elle ne mange pas

See?

I never had a dog, so I was never able to use this excuse. That said, I’m pretty sure many of the kids who used it never had dogs either.

Fast forward a few years into what should be adulthood, and people are still using the DAMH excuse. But now it’s been suitably upgraded.

Take for example, the case of Nigerian Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) employee Joan Asen and the 36,000,000 Naira (R1,193,040, $100,080) which was found to be missing from the organisation upon audit.

That’s a lot of moola to have misplaced, and clearly too much for your average beagle to have devoured, sir.

But no, this was no canine-related disaster. This was basically just theft. No, there’s an equally implausible excuse for not having the money to hand right now, officer:

It was a mystery to me too. I have been saving the money in the bank, but I found it difficult to account for it. So I started saving it in a vault in the office. But each time I open the vault, I will find nothing. I became worried and surprised how the millions of Naira could be disappearing from the vault. I began to interrogate everybody in the house and office, and no one could agree on what might have happened to the money. I continued to press until my housemaid confessed. She said that the money disappeared “spiritually”. She said that a “mysterious snake” sneaked into the house and swallowed the money in the vault.

Ah, yes. The old “A Mysterious Spiritual Snake Ate My Thirty-Six Million Naira” excuse. That old chestnut.

But then, if there was any animal which could have sneaked into the vault and eaten all that cash, it would most likely be a snake. Larger animals would have struggled to get through the keyhole and smaller animals wouldn’t have been able to swallow the money. But snakes are brilliant at getting into small spots and equally good at eating things which initially seem too big to go down the hatch.

The best of both Naira-pinching worlds then. Hmm.

And to be fair, just this morning when I was searching for my car keys and (while looking suspiciously at the beagle), asking if anyone had seen them, my daughter told me that she had seen a mysterious spiritual snake slithering off with them yesterday evening.

Of course, this turned out to be complete nonsense: they were behind the fruit bowl. But the fact remains that they could have been taken by a mysterious spiritual snake. It’s just that this time, they weren’t.

Now that we actually have a dog, I see the world through entirely new (often rolled) eyes, and consequently I believe that anything is possible. Thus, I’m (belatedly) coming around to the idea that actually the dogs could have eaten all that homework.

And if I’m going to make that concession, then it seems only reasonable to admit that Joan and her housekeeper’s mysterious spiritual snake story might also be true.

I’m planning to write a letter to the Nigerian authorities demanding Joan’s immediate release, while also advising the local police to step up their mysterious spiritual snake patrols before any more cash or bunches of car keys go astray.

Prevention is better than cure.

Religion and Rain

It’s been a hectic few days in South Africa as we all await the allegedly imminent departure of corrupt old bastard Jacob Zuma. In fact, by the time you read this, he may already have departed.

Or not.

But all of that excitement has been taking our attention away – as much as anything ever can – from the water crisis, which has now apparently been solved.

Or has it?

As reported earlier in the week, Day Zero “The Day When The Taps Will Be Turned Off” and/or “The Day We May Have To Queue For Water” was moved back by almost a month. This was due to quite a lot of the Eikenhof Dam in Grabouw being released into the Palmiet River to feed into the Cape Town supply, while at the same time the agricultural sector announced that they would be using less water over the next few months.

Or was it?

Because while it seems fairly obvious that these interventions will have a marked effect (like for example, moving Day Zaro back about a month), arrogant and loudmouthed charlatan Pastor Mboro says it’s all down to him.

I want to pray for dams in Cape Town and prove that prayer works. On April 12 the dams will not be on 0%. They (anyone who has predicated that day zero will be on April 12) are not God. The problem is that they didn’t consult with God. To show how effective my prayer is they have now moved the date from  12 April to 12 May.

What a dickhead.

The thing is, other loudmouthed charlatans have a different view on things. Take Angus Buchan for example. He must be amazed that Day Zero has moved out, because he told us this week that:

God is angry with Cape Town

And why?

He’s had enough! …Of the abuse of women and children, gangsterism, lawlessness – He’s had enough!

Well, haven’t we all?

This has opened a right can of worms though, because other areas not suffering with drought include Johannesburg, which isn’t exactly known for being the most law-abiding place on the planet.
Also Nottingham, and that’s a real scummy dump.

But pointing out that sort of thing doesn’t fit the narrative, so we’re expected to ignore it.

Angus’ mass prayer meeting, “paid for by God and guarded by gangsters” (I know, right?), will:

…come against crime, murder, disrespect for human life, prostitution, alcoholism, drug addiction, racialism and hatred.

and will be held in Mitchells Plain:

because it is the hottest place in South Africa.

The SA Weather Service begs to differ:

But who cares about facts when you have faith?

Sadly Angus can only get to us on March 24th, so I guess that we’ll have to rely on Pastor Mboro to fill in the gaps in the intervening seven weeks or so. Although some people might be wondering why Angus is coming anyway, given that it was only in a couple of months ago in November that there was this:

By March next year there will be no drought in the Western Cape and the dams will be full, said well-known lay preacher and potato farmer Angus Buchan as he prayed for “spiritual and physical rain” in Parliament on Friday.

So that March 24th date doesn’t quite fit.

His prayer followed shortly after he alleged that a woman rose from the dead after he prayed for her.

Oh. OK then.
I think we’ve found the level.

What an arsehole.

So, to sum up: we’ve got Mboro til May 12th, Angus from March 24th (although also from March 1st) and… oh… and the Department of Water and Sanitation this weekend:

Yep. Devoid of any other practical plan aside from filling the pockets of her corrupt colleagues, the Minister has resorted to begging us to pray.

What a completely useless individual.

The really, really irritating thing is that we are actually forecast some rain on Friday night. Normally I would be over the moon, but sadly, this is going to be used by each and every one of these dubious characters as firm evidence that God is listening and acting. The fact that He’s been well on his way to killing every plant in the Western Cape for the past three years will escape them, as will the fact that previous efforts of this kind (and there have been many) have completely failed to make any difference at all.

I predict some quotes:

Pastor Mboro: “I came to Cape Town, Day Zero was moved back a month and then it rained as well. Boom. My latest DVD is available in the foyer. Mind my R2 million BMW on your way out.”

Angus Buchan: “I said I was coming to Cape Town, Day Zero was moved back a month and then it rained as well. And I raised a woman from the dead. Boom. My latest book is available in the foyer. Don’t be gay.”

Minister Nomvula Mokonyane: “I said to pray because I needed to avoid giving any practical assistance to the DA-led Western Province, Day Zero was moved back a month and then it rained as well. Frankly, I’m rather annoyed.”

What’s actually happening is that a cold front is hitting the Cape.

But it was sent by God, obviously.

 

Day Zero moved back

As agricultural water use is throttled (and with all the implications thereof), Cape Town’s impending Day Zero has moved back almost a month to 11th May.

Interestingly, Day Zero is now described as:

The Day We May Have To Queue For Water

rather than the previous incarnation, which was:

The Day The Taps Will Be Turned Off

And there is obviously some debate as to whether this good news should have been announced. But if the City wasn’t to announce this, would they not be accused of scaremongering once the media got hold of the story. They tried to slip it out – there wasn’t much of a fanfare to be honest – but such is the massive public interest in the water crisis, it was never going to slip under the radar. But will this stay of execution now result in residents using more water as they see the problem as having been solved? Quite possibly, although it clearly isn’t.

As one twitter user (it was The Guru) quipped though, we’re still very much lost in the woods, and nowhere near out of them.

That said, it might all be sorted after the weekend, as the National Department of Water and Sanitation are motivating for a 3 day weekend of prayer and mediation [sic]:

Obviously, this will work and Day Zero will become just a dot in the distance. One wonders why they didn’t just do this before and save us all this bother. To be fair, I’d just settle for a 3 day weekend. They’ll probably argue that including Friday allows for Islamic involvement in the process, but the more cynical amongst us have surely already noticed that there is some rain in Cape Town’s forecast for Friday:

which might actually be a double bonus:

Looks like next week is party week. So lit fam.