Take that, bungling broadcaster

17 January 2011 - 11:57
By Bathathe Guluva

THE body blows were as devastating as they were vicious

The SABC was enjoying a rare period of relative peace and tranquillity last week when, out of the blue, South African Football Association CEO Leslie Sedibe unleashed a series of crippling left hooks and crunching upper cuts on the unsuspecting state, er, public broadcaster.

Pulling no punches the livid Sedibe publicly accused the vulnerable and much-maligned public broadcaster, and rightly so, of short-changing national football team Bafana Bafana, while giving their cricket counterparts, the Proteas, unlimited and sometimes undeserved exposure on SABC3.

Sedibe's furious torrent of body blows must have knocked the daylights out of the bungling public broadcaster because it did not raise a finger in retaliation.

"Football is a sport watched by the poor people of this country," Sedibe said, neatly throwing the emotive punch.

The SABC's application of double standards when it comes to soccer (a sport mostly watched by blacks) and cricket and boxing (sporting codes followed largely by whites) is not an entirely new thing, which makes the timing of Sedibe's over-the-top tirade very interesting.

The attack seems to seek to prepare Mzansi for something very big.

Don't be surprised if in the near future Safa takes the Bafana Bafana broadcasting rights away from the cash-strapped and out-of-sorts public broadcaster and hand them to its rival across town, pay station Supersport, which is awash with cash, professionally run and has a more respectable image and profile on the continent than the SABC.

Car-less minister

More than four months after being appointed to his new high-profile position, Minister of Sport and Recreation Fikile Mbalula is seemingly still car-less -- unless, of course, he has put his newly acquired set of luxury wheels under wraps or suffers from the phobia of driving around in public.

Guluva was embarrassed to see his favourite minister bumming a lift from his old friend, the Woodwork Boy, during the Ain't Seen Nothing Yet's 99th anniversary jamboree in Polokwane, while his cabinet colleagues and other comrades in the party were flaunting their bling acquisitions without a care in the world.

Guluva did not like it when he saw Comrade Fiks, as he is affectionately known, clambering into the Woodwork Boy's sleek black BMW X5 as if he were a beggar, when he could freely dip into state resources and come out with the two sets of luxury wheels that catch his fancy - one set for his use while in Tshwane and the other to take care of his travelling needs while in the Mother City.

Mbalula has already mentioned that the cars he would buy would have to be of such a nature that it would enable him to execute his duties as a minister. So we more or less have an idea of the type wheels he will buy.

Guluva can't wait until after the local government elections for the minister to acquire the tools that will enable him to do his job efficiently and effectively.

This is no banana republic: we don't want to see our cabinet ministers thumbing lifts in the streets anymore.

  • OFFSIDE: In about a month's time the Proteas will be representing Mzansi at the Cricket World Cup in New Zealand.

But the way they collapsed during their second one-day international against India at the Wanderers on Saturday night, after bowling out their rivals for a low and reachable target of 191 runs, does not inspire confidence.

Email Guluva on: Thatha.guluva@gmail.com