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#SpurGate: They think it’s all over, it is now!

Date: 02.20.2024

Written By

Tonya Khoury

Most South Africans were praying for money, big money, not for us but for #Eskom. #Stage6 has kept us nothing less than infuriated all week, so imagine how we felt when we watched the money we’ve been begging for being handed to colonial England’s Spurs football team for a billboard. One billion rand.

Hold on tight, it’s been a potholed road but let’s swerve and scratch the surface of the week’s media with Acumen.

It’s been dubbed #SpurGate, and the short story is that it’s #LindiweSisulu taking out an early pension by stashing our money for tourism in the UK. One billion rand, that’s a third of SA Tourism’s budget for the year and she is using it to sponsor Tottenham #Hotspurs. That’s not clever, if it was the real plan. You see, a clever sponsorship would be to take that money and sponsor some big voice across the waters that can talk about how great it is here at home. Who? I don’t know maybe #TrevorNoah and maybe if you just asked him nicely he would do it for free. If it has to be football, why not bring #Messi and #Ronaldo (as he doesn’t know where SA is) on a lavish trip to SA and in doing so give us all a treat by showing them some good old SA hospitality. Let them #MeetSouthAfrica, how much do you reckon that would cost? And would you watch their journey? Of course, you would as would the world. But what do I know, I just read the headlines so you don’t have to.

Another ball that hit the goal post was the missed opportunity by #SpurRestaurants. Why didn’t they use this as leverage for “a home-grown brand”. They could have created a tag line and run for goal by putting up a billboard and scribbling on it: “this didn’t cost a billion and neither will your meal at Spur!”. Do I have to do everything around here? Back of the net.

Look, I’ll level with you by telling you an off the pitch secret: I’ve worked in measuring sponsorship, and a billion rand (47 million pounds) is a lot ching, but also not a bad deal for a large chunk of sponsorship for a big UK football team. Not a bad deal if you live in London (only London). Tottenham Hotspurs, or #Spurs to footie fans, is a #PremierLeague team and they’re not brilliant, even I can tell you that. Football is big currency, though, and these teams are worth big airtime and some of that is subliminal messaging – you know, logos on shirts, billboards flashing, some cool swishes on boots. All that is paid for. You know that, right? You’re smart, you knew that. So, you have a billion rand that you have to spend before you are told you under spent your budget for your Department (or you have an exit strategy like Ronaldo). Couple that with your loathing for Cyril #Matamela Ramaphosa, which results in the logical next steps: take one third of the budget and run. Run to colonial England for a bit of branding on a t-shirt worn by a #BGrade (don’t lynch me) football team. I’m sure you footie experts will correct me, but the average Tottenham fan base has fewer numbers than say the #ManchesterUnited fan base, right? Either way, it doesn’t make sense to sponsor a football team – we are dreadful at the sport, we are not known for football at all, well except Benni McCarthy. The only time this makes sense is if you are #Emirates and you have lots of cash to flash. The beautiful game is very expensive and there’s one question one should ask with all sponsorship, what is the objective? Will the average #Spurs fan travel to South Africa and boost the economy? I’m going to say no. As a media expert I can tell you that a billion rand could be better spent, and if you’ve got too much money then let’s cut your budget and move it to Eskom because tourism is being massacred by the lack of power, among many other things, like the roads that lead to tourist destinations. If you don’t want to shift that money then fix the camping sites at #CapeVidal that have veered completely offside; fix the Gogo’s stalls in Sodwana that have struggled since #Covid to get back onto the pitch. What you have told us is just drivel and probably tantamount to #matchfixing #LindiweFC.

Here’s what’s really going on, #SONA and the great #CabinetReshuffle (now called #CabinetLegkotla). This is why we are having this feverish football match play out in our country. A game so busy that we can’t keep up with the ball. We’ve dropped it so many times and the “bench” is waiting for many as we hold our breath and watch the scoreline. It’s already started as #ParksTau resigned and a new nomination for the head of the Supreme Court of Appeal was given by the President. Finally, this game has kicked off and the coin tossed in the air is worth more than you can imagine. It’s the President’s ball in the #PresidentialCup.

The ground swell at SA’s stadium of truth is huge and it is without water or electricity. Protests across the country, chaos caused by the lack of water in Gauteng and even tigers are back on the streets. We lost our shirts this week even if they did have logos on them. #OffSide.

There is so much news, I can’t keep up with the tables of the league. The Court ruled for cadre deployment records to be handed across. #PRASA lost a dispute where hundreds of millions in wages were not paid. Many EFF members are resigning as players are bought and sold. #Mashatile replaces #Munyi as member of National Assembly. #Standupsa marched on #Eskom. Ketang #Phalatse showed her true colours when she said that the DA will never rule with #Steenhuisen as leader. Now it makes sense, she wants to be President, she’s up for the trophy, not the chain. #Dali and #Mkhwebane tried to get #ThuliMadonsela to testify and her response was such a great header of a ball. She said that #MadamMkhwebane had shut her out of the office during handover and that she had nothing to add. Can you be our President #Thuli? Pretty pleas from the crowd.

The news was relentless, a bit like a soccer team playing penalties for a cup. The most curious story had nothing to do with the footie. It was another #Tiger. This time spotted at a business estate in Edenvale. What are these cats doing, have they also had enough and are now fighting for their freedom? Probably. Well, this story was so full of holes that it might have been the road to #DullStroom. There were reports saying that the tiger had been caught and darted and sent to a sanctuary. There were pictures to boot, so that made us feel good. #Laduma! Turns out, though, in true IOL style, the pics were from a story last year, unrelated to the #EdenvaleTiger, and the #RedCard appeared when the #SPCA (where the tiger was meant to be) said that they had never seen the tiger, probably any tiger, in their lives. And as it unraveled, it was a blatant foul and we worked out that SOS security were lying to us. My opinion, the tiger is back with its owner and he’s a bit lighter in his pocket after paying penalties to protect his story.

#GerhardAckerman head of a pedophile ring has been placed on suicide watch. The #NulaneTrial (first #StateCapture prosecution case) has kicked off and #Transnet disruptions cost #Kumba more than a third of its fourth-quarter sales.  #BlowTheWhistleRef.

And then just when you think it’s all over, we went into extra time and Julius #Malema’s gun shots were on trial. The judge pointed out the obvious, that Juju was on stage with a gun, only to be told that the judge was leading the witness and Juju’s legal team are now asking for a #RedCard in the form of her recusal. #Recusal, another great South Africanism, this one works well, hey? New fancy footie tricks. Also, it was such a big coincidence that the one laptop with footage that proves it all, by using a different camera angle, was stolen. Well obviously! If you buy that you don’t watch this football team often. They are masters. #Referee?

As we headed for penalties, the matter between uBaba and #Downer and #Maughan was postponed to August which means the #ArmsDeal trial will suffer accordingly. Such #AFoulMatch #ADirtyGame.

There were some other interesting stories, #ChatGPT is taking over the world (not really but people are very excited about this tool). I tried it but I’d like to see the linesmen before I decide. #Sanlam launched in the metaverse, did they insure digital images? #Hellmans mayonnaise stopped production in SA and there were clever ads and memes that kept us entertained. It’s all gone to hell man, was one of my favourites, Nando’s did it again. But for the most part I was depressed; I needed some proper goals, those from the centre of the pitch kind of goals that make your jaw drop and your eyes big. And there it was, South Africa’s #LionelMessi appeared – #Imitiaz #Sooliman, head of #GiftofTheGivers, took over my screen and my heart. He wasn’t happy at all! He was busy saving lives in the NW as the floods had caused carnage. An island, #GiftOfTheGivers, a team that does not belong in the Premier League. #Sooliman said enough is enough and told SA to stop passing the buck. He said, and I’m paraphrasing, to get off our behinds and fix our local municipalities. No one is going to do it for us. Work from the ground up and forget about a trophy or a cup! Just do it! (insert Nike swoosh). Well, go on then, it’s your turn South Africa, get on the pitch and play your heart out. Let’s bring this ball home.

I’m Tonya Khoury and you’ve just played a handball with Acumen Media.

They think its all over it is now

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