Political drama: from JZ's demise, to EFF BLF hypocrisy, to shapelessness of DA
The year 2018 was dramatic. On January 1, Jacob Zuma was our president. As you read this column, within the same year, Cyril Ramaphosa is president - but you and I never voted this year.
We opened the year with a great sense of anticipation. Given what had happened at Nasrec in December the previous year, it was obvious that Zuma's days in the Union Buildings were numbered.
Like other kleptocrats, Zuma did not go without drama. When cornered, he asked for three months. He even asked for more time so that he could introduce Cyril Ramaphosa to African leaders.
In the end, Zuma exited the Union Buildings kicking and screaming. Days after his fall, his fellow comrades in thieving, the Guptas, used the nearest hole in our national fence to escape for Dubai.
The Guptas did not leave alone; they took Duduzane Zuma with them, fearing that he could spill the beans if they left him behind. It took death in the family to smoke Duduzane out of Dubai. His mansion there now stands unoccupied. If things go well, he seems destined for a prison cell.
The picture of a manacled Duduzane in court convinced more people that, indeed, a new dawn was in town. Suddenly people wanted to be messengers, by raising their hands and say: "Thuma mina."
Amid the scepticism that accompanied the retention of some of Zuma's rotten apples in Ramaphosa's cabinet, there were signs that the tree was beginning to shake. Pravin Gordan kicked out some Gupta deployees at Eskom, Transnet and other places.
As all this was happening, Jimmy Manyi, the undertaker, was busy burying a Gupta TV channel and their newspaper on the other side of town. Alas, the funeral was attended by the poor Manyi alone.
And then the state capture commission took off. There was bombshell after bombshell, blasting off the sheepskin with which Nhlanhla Nene had wrapped himself for many years. Nene left cabinet to join fellow scoundrels like Mosebenzi Zwane in the hall of infamy.
The climax of state capture evidence was delivered by Ngoako Ramatlhodi, painting the picture of the grip the Guptas had on Zuma as that of a python tightening its coils around a "finished" victim.
In the midst of all this drama, a VBS report dropped like a boulder from the ceiling, smashing the polished table around which criminals were enjoying their delicious loot.
Suddenly the unity of opposites was revealed; Andile Mngxitama and Julius Malema found themselves marching against one enemy: Pravin Gordhan.
The VBS saga revealed the shocking truth that Zuma and the EFF have been eating from the same stinky pot.
Malema and his deputy, "Fraud" Shivambu, are still running like headless chickens, trying hard to make you and I believe the propaganda that the EFF is an anti-corruption crusader on behalf of poor black people.
The harder Malema and Shivambu try to dupe the public, the more evidence of their dealings with cigarette smugglers come out.
It now makes sense that Malema has said nothing against Tom Moyane, the thug that protected cigarette smugglers at SA Revenue Service. EFF chairman Advocate Dali Mpofu SC even defends Moyane.
The DA was not to be outshone. While the EFF's criminal core was getting exposed, the DA was shooting itself in the foot. White wirepullers intensified their war against Patricia de Lille.
De Lille now feels good in her new political home simply named Good. She left behind a DA that is without shape. Everyone can see the party is in disarray.
As the political drama continued to unfold, the economy was also falling apart - even as Mr Thuma Mina ratcheted up his investment-attraction drive. People lost jobs.
Closer to Christmas, Eskom's new board, the one to turn things around, gave us a gift: load shedding.
Believe it or not, everything you have read in this column, and more, happened in one year: 2018 - the year of political drama. I wish you all a Happy Christmas.