Thu Oct 27 11:13:12 CAT 2016

my dear msholozi, mayihlom'ihlasele

By unknown | Jul 30, 2009 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

DEAR Msholozi

DEAR Msholozi

The last time I wrote a letter to a president his henchmen bayed for my blood.

But I guess you are not like that. In fact, you seem to be everything your learned predecessor was not.

First, you are approachable, open - the whole country knows about the triumvirate of boMaKhumalo, MaNtuli and MaMabhija - and down to earth. Nobody can accuse you of being too aloof. That, dear sir, is what endears you to the millions who chose you to lead the country.

Having said that I'm sure you will agree that T-boss was in many ways a good president too. For you and Tokyo Sexwale to blame him for your inability to contain your own followers is the cheapest of cheap shots. A cop-out.

He was, notwithstanding his everlasting love for Robert Mugabe and obsession with quacks, a good president who unfortunately succumbed to the after-effects of too much education.

What with the highfalutin, hoity-toity English he chose to address the masses with. Many could not understand a word he was saying.

At least you come, sing that (awful) Mshin'wam of yours, dance and occasionally tell them: "Phela mina angifundanga ..." (I am not educated).

The people love that (not that you are not educated but have no hang-ups about it).

Still, you rose to dizzy heights of leadership, which shows that inside that shaven pate, which has become a cartoonist's delight, there is an amazing brain.

They see you as one of them and a man who speaks their language - or tries to.

Let me digress some more.

There is a famous "Anglo-Zulu" chief, still very much alive, who was accused of fanning the flames of violence during the turbulent 1990s.

One of the stories that did the rounds was that he would tell thousands of his followers (armed to the teeth): "It is pernicious balderdash that I said to the people: Mayihlom'ihlasele! (Arm yourselves and attack!)."

The crowds, not well versed in English, only understood "Mayihlom'ihlasele", roared their approval and went on the rampage.

You, sir, can't be caught out that way because the people understand you.

For all the above I congratulate you. I now come to the reason for this letter.

I know you are a smart cookie, sir, so surely you realise that if you fail now as president, it will be largely owing to the very leaders in your tripartite alliance who just a few months ago were pledging their undying loyalty to you.

Granted, your government's pace of service delivery is pathetic, corruption abounds and pay levels suck.

But to say after the fact that "action will be taken" against yahoos who trash the neighbourhoods and cities and attack nonstrikers is to suggest we are all idiots.

You, as their supreme leader, ought to crack the whip. The situation is desperate - and desperate moments call for desperate measures.

Fire, arrest, reshuffle, show your teeth, bite - whatever. If the laws hold you back, change them. Nice guys cannot get too much done, and you're nice.


Your loyal subject

Charles Mogale


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