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Paradise Lost. A South African Story.

Date: 07.17.2024

Written By

Tonya Khoury

Paradise Lost. A South African Story.

I bet you didn’t miss me. This week flew by. It was agonizing though, so brace yourselves, have antacid to the ready and let’s scratch the surface of a tumultuous week in the media.

There were echoes of Zuma’s tardiness as the President postponed the #CabinetReshuffle – he had a cold. We gave him the weekend to get better, but on Monday, he was late. When he finally turned up (an hour and a half late) he looked furious. I was praying for a chopping block, but instead we got two additional new ministers and Lindiwe #MedusaSisulu left the building. That was the good bit, and in fact I wanted him to do it all over again so that we could relive that moment. TTFN (ta ta for now) Linds, I’m sure you’ll be with #KhakiCarl in a minute. With over 300 thousand engagements and a negative net sentiment of minus 50%, we were unimpressed. The #CabinetReshuffle also brought #ZiziKodwa and #Zikalala to the fore. Are you feeling queezy yet? Wait…#Bheki leave-your-hat-on Cele is still at the helm of the rape capital of the world. And if you ask me “what of women” or “what of youth”? Well, there’s good and bad news: Nkosozana #WhenPeopleZol #StillAZuma was removed from #COGTA – which is amazing news; however, this 74-year-old is now in charge of youth and women. Bubble, Bubble Toil and Trouble, the President’s tongue is double. So those two new ministers, they’re both named Ramokgopa, one for electricity and one for planning and oversight. Hold up, “planning and oversight” isn’t that literally RamaPhosa’s only job? Anyway, I would like to take a moment to call for a round of applause for the #MinisterOfEverything Fikile #Mbalula, Razmataz, Mbaks, MinisterFF is officially on our screens more than the news anchors and certainly far more than our President. We see you Raz with your funky glasses and flashy suits. A shining example of the ANC. I know, sarcasm is the lowest form of wit. Bite me.

This is not democracy, my friends, this is a heist. You see Paul and Julius are the new Romeo and Juliet. And how we have underestimated Juju, he’s a president in waiting. And that means reach for the sick bag as the plane is catapulting to land without any oxygen to keep you placid. The #EFF are filled with empty promises. They forgave Zuma a gazillion times and at the forefront of #Julius’s narrative for the #nationalShutdown is: #RamphosaMustGo coupled with #EskomMustWork and #FoodPricesMustFall. Juju also said that  if businesses don’t close, they will be looted; this while his crew are carrying AK47s.

Just another day of electioneering, another day in paradise.

Just think about it, are the EFF going to turn on the lights? Are they actually going to drop food prices? How? Not even on a red-letter day my friends. This is just a grapple for power to drain the last of the country. It does make me marvel at how rich this country actually is, right? I mean it’s like the golden goose that keeps laying even though she’s in captivity under gun threat.

As for our opposition, #DearJohn, please think twice. The DA, as reluctant as I am to say it, are the only hope. But no one is, by majority, going to vote for a white man again. So, we are staring down the barrel of coalition country and we’ve all seen how effective that is. Just think about it.

My most entertaining story of the week? It has to be Dali #Mpofu and the much-anticipated appearance of Professor Advocate #ThuliMadonsela. Oh, #ProfThuli took uDali to school, and she was ferocious with that mild manner that she carries so well. She would start her sentence with “excuse me SIR”, the “sir” was pronounced with such disdain it made me laugh every time. She told Dali that she wasn’t on trial and that his chom, Busi Madam Mkhwebane, was. She called his nasty comments about her appearance the lowest of blows, even coming from him, and added that there had been many. She has quite the ego though, I’ll admit to that, but once you hear about all the awards she has won, I suppose it comes with the territory. Anyway, it was a win for #Thuli and now #Dali wants to bring two more witnesses, even after we were told that the process was closed. You see Madam Busi doesn’t want to get up in the dock but the chairperson, Dyanti, made mincemeat of this proposal, citing the length of time it has taken to get to this point and that witness lists were closed a long time ago. We wait for next steps, but it’s basically game, set and match now. Time to hear from the madam!

There were two massive protests that started and continued throughout the week. One was the #WitsProtest, where we saw the plight of the ambitious youth have the doors of education barricaded. These are students that are sleeping under their desks because they have no accommodation, but are strong willed and insist on an education. According to Gareth Cliff, that doesn’t count, he doesn’t care because they are not his children, his words not mine. In fact, his words were stronger than that, but you’ve been through enough. The #WitsProtest started quietly and then ended with rock throwing and an nyala and two water tankers. The head of the SRC was arrested and he wants Dali to help him. Please my friend, get one of your aspiring lawyers to assist you. You have no cash and #Dali is useless. You have a cause, #Zuma promised you free education as he left the room and now you are being asked for 10k just to find a bed let alone put something in your ravenous belly. Sick. But not quite as sick as the next protest.

#Nehawu Hospital strike is one of the worst I’ve ever witnessed, shocking and clearly orchestrated. I saw many NEHAWU red overalls, and no nurses uniforms in this protest. We watched as the sick and the dying, the old and the young being brought by ambulance, only to be confronted by a mob of protesters fighting to keep the suffering on the streets. Some of them died before they made it inside, as doctors barricaded themselves in to save who they could. In the #PresidentsQandA, he called it murder and that essential workers were not allowed to strike. No work, no pay and what happened to the Hippocratic oath? The hypocritical oath more like. How sick is sick? Nehawu are next level. A nurse with a panga attacked an ambulance as others tried to drag a critically ill child from the vehicle. #NextLevelSick. #ParadiseLost.

Let’s make this snappy as I’m running out of words. #GwedeMantashe (the one we wanted to see axed in the #CabinetReshuffle) is quoted as saying “coal corruption is fine” and if we think that it is bad we should see the corruption in renewables. He said all this live on a podium where #AntiCoalProtesters tried to hijack his speech. He doesn’t care, our #phuzaface, just give him the dollars.

Speaking of dollars, #Phalaphala came back to bite the President’s behind as the Reserve Bank confirmed they have no record of the transaction of dollars that landed in Cyril’s furniture. Cyril, the squirrel, says that it wasn’t for him to declare. Round and round we go. #ThinkTwice.

#Gumede is in court with 20 odd co-accused. Most of them are her family as it is revealed that there are over 170 shelf companies involved in the case of looting a province. She is so arrogant, I wish this court procedure slaps the smug look on her face right into smugville.

There’s been no word on the assassination of AKA, of course not.

A four-year-old died in a pit toilet, this after the deadline passed that was meant to ensure all pit toilets would be removed. Angelo #Agrizzi, remember him from the State Capture inquiry, the one who fessed up and dropped files like they were landmines. Well, he’s off the hook indefinitely. Don’t ask me how, but he is.  There’s no water in the East Rand and Cape Town warns its residents to boil their water before using it. Um, question how do we boil water without electricity, are they handing out gas on the street corner? It was international women’s’ day, whatever. And then the story that broke our hearts. The death of a South African icon, #MarkPilgrim, who after a brave battle with cancer, left us this week. We love you Mark, thank you for giving each of us hope in a tempest.

To end, I’m going to cheer you up … and if you’re an #ElonHater, you’re going to love this. He walked right into a very bad HR trap. He called out a former employee for not doing his job. Turns out that #Halli has muscular dystrophy, but that doesn’t mean his brain doesn’t work. He owned/owns a major business (based in Iceland) that Twitter took over under Musk. Musk promised not to fire #Halli or his staff, but did. Well actually, he just locked them out of the system without so much as an exit interview. Musk, being Musk, attacked #Halli on Twitter for being a useless employee and asked him a series of questions laced with poison. #Halli explained that to answer those questions he would be breaking an NDA with Twitter and #Elon gave him permission to do so, over Twitter, (our Trumpette). Well, Halli took him to class and if you read one story this weekend, read this one. #Halli backed Elon into a corner by making it clear he wasn’t a mere employee and there was a deal that Elon had contravened, and he wanted his $100 million dollars as dictated in the sale agreement. Elon back- peddled like a Tour de France cyclist on rewind. HA! That was funny. Be like #Halli. This guy, rather than take Twitter shares, chose the cash so that he can pay his taxes to Iceland. They don’t make them like this guy anymore, smart, humanitarian and scared of nothing. #ThinkTwice, where’s our paradise?

I’m Tonya Khoury and you’ve just tickled the surface of the news this week with Acumen Media.

Paradise Lost

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