President Zuma, you have mail

Greetings, Mosholozi, in the name of our patron saint Machiavelli and all those who follow the holy gospels of perfidy and artifice.

Well done on surviving yet another attack by the running dogs of … I don’t know what. Let’s just call them running dogs. They bark a lot, chase their own tails and eventually roll over and lie there panting, trying to look cute and pathetic, hoping someone will come along and vote for them.

The opposition treats parliament as if it’s some sort of clubhouse for over-achievers. For people with a conscience. People who care. Well, it’s not. It’s the headquarters of one of the most powerful gangs in the country.

How dare these shouty arrivistes come to your headquarters and demand you get impeached? When I was small I read a book called James and the Giant Impeachment. It gave me nightmares from which I have never recovered. Nobody deserves to be treated like that.

Cape Town has for years proudly hosted the 26s, 27s, 28s, the Americans, the Mongrels, the Hard Livings and the Sexy Boys, but yours is the only gang with its headquarters in a fancy building right in the middle of the city.

Sure, at something like 243 members, yours is one of the smaller gangs in the Cape Town precinct. But what you lack in numbers you compensate for in influence. The 28s might trade in crystal meth and crack whores, but your members, oh boy, your members get to make laws! That’s pretty wild stuff, my man. I apologise. That was disrespectful. You are nobody’s man. Well, that’s not strictly true. You are Atul Gupta’s man.

You should know, though, that any man of my man is my man, too. Whoops. That sounds a bit gay. I have never forgotten the time some years back when you said, “When I was growing up, unqingili (homosexuals) could not stand in front of me.” A lot of people can’t stand in front of me, too, but that’s mainly because they are journalists who struggle to get to their feet by 11am and are back on their knees twelve hours later.

What I’m saying is that I am not gay. However, if you have changed your position, so to speak, and your gang now embraces gayness, then I am with you. Not physically, of course. I lack the stamina to compete with your sturdily built wives. But if you need me to pay special attention to one of your top people, I shall grin and bare it for the cause of the national democratic revolution. And when I say top people, I obviously mean the top six. I am not a racist but I think I might be a bit classist.

Given a choice, I would rather not have to perform Catholic ministrations upon Gwede Mantashe or Squirrel Ramaphosa. They are hefty men and, despite my advanced age, I have managed to retain my snake-like hips and would prefer them not to be crushed.

Jessie Duarte frightens me, not least because she reminds me of a Lebanese biker who almost snapped my spine in a street fight 20 years ago.

And Baleka Mbete, your fighting general, is out of the question because she doesn’t recognise anyone these days and I fear that in mid-coitus she might mistake me for Steve Hofmeyr and sink her fangs into my throat.

That leaves Zweli Mkhize. He’s a bit of a dark horse, which I might rather fancy if it weren’t for his … I beg your pardon, Brother Leader. This was not what I wanted to write about. Things got away from me. You, of all people, know how easily this can happen. Oddly enough, the Guptas also got away. Late last night, I believe.

Do you have a name for your gang? Yes, I know the official name is the African National Congress. But it lacks the panache of, for instance, the Los Zetas or the Crisps. Wait, not the Crisps. That’s the posse who run the Simba operation. The Crips. And their rivals, the Bloods. Awesome names, awesome people.

Acronyms, like ANC, are not that popular in the field of organised crime. Unless, of course, you’re the IMF, a guileful gang specialising in high-octane extortion. How about something like the Aryan Brotherhood but for black people? I don’t know what’s the antonym for Aryan and, quite frankly, hazarding a guess is more than my job’s worth.

Shouting in parliament on Tuesday, Julius Malema, the leader of the EFF gang, called your gang Bloody Voting Cattle. It has a pastoral yet deadly ring to it. Cows and voting have always scared me and, quite frankly, as a vegetarian anarchist I want no part of either. That could be my gang name. Ben ‘Veggie-Boy’ Trovato.

“My biggest nephew has been named in the Panama Papers? Hehehe. Gwede, unleash Veggie-Boy.” Obviously I would need some sort of eco-friendly superhero outfit, possibly made from hemp with a high THC count so that I could really fly when push came to shove.

Even though everyone recognises you as the capo di tutti capi, the control you exerted over your members on Tuesday by doing nothing more than nodding off was breathtaking. Not one of them voted in favour of that treacherous business instigated by the gangbangers on the other side of the room. You can’t buy that kind of loyalty. Well, actually you can. And you have.

The Democratic Alliance is an even worse gang name than the African National Congress because nobody has ever been afraid of an alliance, apart from maybe a miscreant Francophobe sentenced to a thousand hours of French lessons at the Alliance Francaise.

As a patriot who hopes for great things for his country, but mainly for himself, I am very pleased that you refused to do what the enemy described as ‘the right thing’. Capitulation is for weaklings and quislings and maybe even ducklings.

Speaking of which, I see that Trevor Manuel – I’m not sure if you remember him – has asked you not to bother coming into work on Monday. Or any other day. He’s from the Cape Flats and knows his way around an Okapi knife, so you might want to be careful. Also, he’s the deputy chairman of Rothschild in South Africa, one of the richest gangs around. Watch his hands. He leads with his right and takes with his left. Go for his balls, if you must. He didn’t have any when he worked for you but it seems they might have grown back.

Comrade President, there is something that has been worrying me. Nothing to do with Nkandla – I have also used other people’s money to improve my quality of life and Comrade Jesus has always sent some of his angels to keep me out of prison, as he has done with you – but I read a report this week that said a rat carrying bubonic plague was found in Tembisa.

I don’t want to be alarmist, but my favourite book, the Bible, is full of plagues. I know it doesn’t sound like much of a fun read, and you’d probably be happier with something by Robin Sharma or some other monk who sold his Ferrari and bought a small country. Not that you’re a monk. Heaven forfend that rumour gets around town. You still have many more wives to collect.

Right now, rats are everywhere. The state broadcaster is infested with them. Even the Hawks, who actually eat rats, have been overrun. Some even made it all the way from Uttar Pradesh to 7 Saxonwold Drive, although they seem to have abandoned this particular sinking ship.

Funny things, plagues. They start with rats. Next thing you know, you’re waist-deep in locusts, covered in flies and choking on frogs. This is fine if you’re French but it’s not so pleasant for those of us accustomed to a certain standard of living.

The point is, have you done anything recently that might have offended God or any other of the multitude of supernatural deities? Think carefully. No? Nothing at all? Okay, then. It must be a coincidence.

Anyway, good luck for future brawls. Like you, I would also prefer disputes to be settled in the old ways – with pangas and knobkieries – but I guess we’re stuck with the courts. For now.

Viva the one-party democracy!

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33 thoughts on “President Zuma, you have mail

  1. “I am what I am because of who we all are.” used to be the romantic rallying cry. I think your book ‘Incognito’ should be compulsory reading by the way and you must have a “Sharma’ book in you somewhere Ben now that age and experience have provided new impetus – Major mexican wave for your offer of special ministrations – I think that might save us. Right behind you on that one.

  2. Ben!!! Again of course I’m LMAO! This means you did your job. Again! Wish I could use emojis in the comments but they come out like like a question mark and would only serve to confuse you….. Snort, snicker… You gave me quit a history lesson! I don’t really care about African lawmakers, but you did good. But when it got to the good book and rats! I couldn’t stop laughing. But then you’re right as usual. As a Christian this got my brain rolling. Just woke up and getting your blog in my e-mail makes my Sunday. You’re in a weird time zone Ben, the rest of the world’s still Sunday. Snicker…. Ok. Gonna go check for rats. So sorry really about the rat problem. You’re a journalist, address it nationally. Not everyone knows or is capable of understanding your brilliant writing though. It’s sarcastic, grape vining brilliance! Kinda like me. *blows on nails* I love you, I’d propose because I dream of living in Australia. I’m a Californian. I don’t claim the rest at this time. I’m looking forward to your take on the American political free for all! Oh, yeah, the proposal. Don’t panic. I’m 57 and motherly too. Not what you’re looking for…. *sad face* but I’ll continue to wait with vigor your next post. Huzzah! 🙂

    1. loved your post – especially the ‘quit a history lesson’ – are we repeating it or making new history – not sure. Also ‘blows on nails’ I want to use that phrase if I knew what it meant. Keep it coming! Ben fan also.

  3. Ben!!! Again of course I’m LMAO! This means you did your job. Again! Wish I could use emojis in the comments but thou come out like like a question mark and would only serve to confuse you….. Snort, snicker… You gave me quit a history lesson! I don’t really care about African lawmakers, but you did good. But when it got to the good book and rats! I couldn’t stop laughing. But then you’re right as usual. As a Christian this got my brain rolling. Just woke up and getting your blog in my e-mail makes my Sunday. You’re in a weird time zone Ben, the rest of the world’s still Sunday. Snicker…. Ok. Gonna go check for rats. So sorry really about the rat problem. You’re a journalist, address it nationally. Not everyone knows or is capable of understanding your brilliant writing though. It’s sarcastic, grape vining brilliance! Kinda like me. *blows on nails* I love you, I’d propose because I dream of living in Australia. I’m a Californian. I don’t claim the rest at this time. I’m looking forward to your take on the American political free for all! Oh, yeah, the proposal. Don’t panic. I’m 57 and motherly too. Not what you’re looking for…. *sad face* but I’ll continue to wait with vigor your next post. Huzzah! 🙂

  4. I LOVED IT!! HI GUYS! I am a new young blogger,want to be a part of your wordpress family,do read my articles and comment.Need your encouragement and support.waiting….

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