Yengeni takes cake as survivor of the year

The time has come when we all look back and reflect on the year that was, complete with its headliners, and pick the best or worst of the rest.

The time has come when we all look back and reflect on the year that was, complete with its headliners, and pick the best or worst of the rest.

It is that time when organisations, big and small or even downright obscure, choose their newsmakers of the year.

Of course, most of the choices will raise eyebrows as is the case every year.

I therefore take this opportunity to choose my man.

This inaugural award will be known as the Slice of Life Survivor of the Year.

Pardon me for stealing the idea that begot the ever-popular reality television series Survivor.

But my choice is not based on criteria that include the eating of live snakes, spiders and rotten eggs while staying away from the shower is part of the contest.

To qualify for this auspicious award the nominee must survive in the real sense of the word.

He or she must possess the power of Houdini. They must lie to the extent that they believe that they are telling the truth and not just talking themselves out of some tough spot.

By now you must be itching to know who is my nominee for the 2007 Slice of Life Survivor of the Year.

I have to first justify why I dreamed up this award.

It reflects the state of our country's crazy and beautiful mind.

Now, the inaugural 2007 Slice of Life Survivor of the Year award goes to the fallen ANC parliamentary chief whip Tony Yengeni.

Unfortunately, other than the publicity the winner gains there is no prize money, designer sunglasses or discounts on luxury vehicles.

The editor-in-chief still has to approve my request for a certificate and citation.

Why Tony Yengeni?

He qualifies because he meets the criteria for the award.

First, he convinced Correctional Services officials that the beer bottle that he was seen holding during a party at his house did not mean he drank the contents.

It was his wife Lumka who stood by him and told the inquisitive press that her loving husband did not drink out of that bottle.

So nothing happened to Tony and he is still out on parole.

This means he has met criterion number one: to lie to the extent that you believe what you are saying is true when you know it is not.

Second, he possesses the power of Houdini. Phunyuka bemphethe!

Police see Tony's black Mercedes-Benz 4x4 zig-zagging its way late at night.

They pick him up, smell liquor and take him in and test his blood for alcohol levels.

Now the chief of the police station where he was held is himself in trouble for allegedly tampering with information that could see Tony back in jail.

And indeed if the police chief is cleared Tony will stay out of prison.

That is the power of Houdini.

Deservedly, therefore, Tony Yengeni is the 2007 Slice of Life Survivor of the Year.

With such powers Tony might be wishing he was not convicted of fraud in the first place.

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