We started off the week by learning that over half of all #PPETenders consisted of fictitious and fraudulent content, or now commonly referred to as “tenderized activity”. The media used the term “over half” but the true number is 61%. Has the media missed half a trick? Almost two thirds of all PPE tenders were deemed to be “irregular”. Why on earth do we call it “irregular”? The truth of the matter is that it’s pretty regular., I’d say it’s more the rule than the exception to it. #DoubleEntendre #RegularExpenditure
Let me take you back in time to the beginning of the pandemic. #Ramaphosa told us that there would be open books all the way on the PPE. During this time, I was still in love with the President and I thought, he’s giving the men enough rope and then it won’t be his fault when they hang themselves and if they happen to survive that ordeal he would let them fall on their swords. #RegularExpenditure And here we are today with a list of “irregular expenditure”, and no doubt another #Commission that will make our eyes water. This is likely to be followed by a few good years of investigations and some telly watching, where we bluff ourselves that justice will be served along with the popcorn. Fast forward five years (at the very least) and then much to our surprise no-one will go to jail. #RegularExpenditure
Which brings me to the lead story of the week: Someone kept audio from the #CR17 campaign (at least five years ago) in a secret vault, no doubt. Imagine how long that is in cellphone lifetimes. At least three if you’re with Vodacom. I digress, that person took the audio and kept it safe for five years in case they needed it for a rainy day when the heavens open and there is a factional split in the #ANC, and #Zuma still wants to rule the country (ok wait that has been going on for a long time, so maybe I’m overreaching). Regardless, the audio is “leaked” and our President is heard saying that he would “rather fall on my (his) sword than for the public to finally hear that their public money was used to advance certain campaigns”. My first thought was – well don’t they always use public funds? I mean sure, they tell us they “shouldn’t” but I never expected anything less from any of our electioneering to be fair. I thought it was #RegularExpenditure
My friends, something is off. Something smells like a dead rat under a burnt pile of insurrection ashes. That “something” is the #RET, and the recent events where #LindiweSisulu took shots at our Judiciary and in doing so, our Constitution. Vomiting the same narrative, word for word, from the #Zumas and #Magashule’s song sheet. “The Constitution is optional”, and that’s what they want us to believe. This time it started with the suspension of #MervynDirks (an RET loyalist). We still do not know why #Mervin was suspended, but it caused a big stir when he called on #SCOPA to lift his suspension and investigate the President’s misuse of public funds, all the while pointing (like a washroom sign) to this “leaked audio”. Side note – can we stop calling it “leaked”. In fact, the word you’re looking for is “published”.
Look, I don’t want to minimize the cataclysm of the #LeakedAudio but we all see this for what it is, right? Another attempt to overthrow the President. Look around you. There is nothing but fraud and corruption within the corridors of the ANC and the now RET. Here’s where the Zumas are working on Radically Transforming our Economy. They’ve seen what happens when you gut a country. Not just the PPE that’s meant to save lives and hungry households. A gutted country forgets about millions of rand’s and starts referring to billions, and a gutted country waits twelve years for no justice whatsoever. We watch #Commissions, #Hawks, #Concourt and heavy hitting Judges derided during the looting of a country.
We have forgotten about the #Insurrection; we forgot about the #AttackonConcourt; we forgot about #ParliamentBurning, and this week we didn’t even blink when #Waterkloof went up in flames. We found explosives on the highway last December; we’ve seen hospitals, communication towers and factories burn all in the name of #RegularExpenditure. Give us a break Lindiwe and your RET. We see you. If the President falls on his sword, so will all of you. That, my dear, is the #DoubleEntendre you are relying on. You and your cronies made it completely acceptable to spend whatever you like from wherever suits you, and now you want one man to #FallOnHisSword. Of course, #Ramphosa ate from the coffers of our heavily burdened public, bearing in mind he was the Deputy to #Zuma after all. He knows it all, and he is complicit. As is every single member of government. It’s not just the ANC. We are not fooled by this #RegularExpenditure. We are not even fooled when #Malema says he will join forces with the #RET to unseat the ANC. We know we are being played.
The other enormous story this week was #AlbertFritz and the alleged #SexualMisconduct within his office. He apparently preyed on young women in the workplace. #SexualMisconduct they call it. Can we drop that term and use #SexualPredator? #Winde (the guy with Zille’s old job, the Premier of WC) took to the media to say the matter is being handled swiftly and #Fritz withdrew as a provincial leader of the DA. Do you remember #ZephanyNurse, the baby who was stolen at birth and raised to an adult? She only learnt of her kidnapping when she turned 18. Well, #Fritz took her in and gave her a job – she is now willing to testify on yet another trauma in her life. Just another person trampled on by politics. #RegularExpenditure
Last week the #EFF took to the streets to check quotas of foreigners working in SA. Grimacing like a #LabourInspector, he took his clipboard and shouted #PutSouthAfricansFirst. Our own slogan for #Xenophobia, another #DoubleEntrende. #Mashaba said, “A number of raids have taken place to confront businesses accused of illegal activities and non-compliance.” – #RaidsOnAfricans, nice very nice. #GaytonMackenzie also jumped on the band wagon and said “100% of jobs (are) to be reserved for South Africans.” He did add that an exception would be if they had a specialized skill. Um… what specialized skill exactly? A decent education and a willingness to work, because that is all you’re seeing here Gayton. Foreigners working amongst an unemployable nation due to a failed education system and a lack of effective border control. You guys, though. You call Mugabe a hero and then slam the consequences of his radical economic transformation of Zimbabwe?
I have a question about education and the impact it has on our nation. Why aren’t we making way for artisan work in our education space? Why isn’t there a set of classes that gives functional English; classes that teach you how to answer the phone, set up an email, understand banking and credit, teaches you to budget, how to generate an invoice and a set of artisan skills. I don’t understand why on earth anyone who is going to make a fortune being a plumber (and I’m sure you’ll agree that there are only a few decent plumbers) will ever, ever need to know about the various types of cloud formations in the sky. When are we going to wake up and rise from our apartheid colonialist driven education system? When will we educate our nation to earn a decent living? I promise you the doctors will still become doctors, but those who don’t want to study for a further ten years can be equipped to make a living instantly. When will our children become more than just #RegularExpenditure?
There is other news, I’m getting grumpy and I’d rather not talk about it, but it’s my job so … There was a #RateHike that will make your eyes tear up, and Ace’s son was cleared in the #PPEScandal. #BA lost a door from its plane as the passengers disembarked, eek. #NomvulaMokonyane got hammered this week for #RegularExpenditure. The #CCMA said that the workplace can enforce vaccination. #ChiefButhelezi is in hospital and then that story went very quiet. And then, what must be the most indulgent and funny story of the week is the #NationalLunchDate. #PearlThusi and #MrSmeg (only in SA can you become an influencer because of a kettle) had a love affair over Twitter and are going on a #lunchDate. I thought it was so cute and organic, and I loved it. And then, enter marketing opportunism, sponsorship of lavish vehicles and restaurants filled timelines, and the poor got to read just how gluttonous this event was going to be. The sad thing is Twitter didn’t see the #DoubleEntendre; it wasn’t a “national” lunch date at all.
Let me cheer you up; if you don’t know already, #Wordle is the best thing to hit the planet since the asteroid. You get five guesses on a five-letter word. There is only one word a day and if you don’t get it you have to wait until tomorrow for the next one. Today I got it in three guesses. My personal best. Just google it, and I promise that you’ll feel better, well unless you need a sixth guess, then it will drive you mad.
Take a break this weekend with your #Wordle. I’m Tonya Khoury and you’ve just scratched the surface with Acumen Media.