An open letter to our shiny new president

Dear Comrade Cyril Ramaphosa the First, Defeater of Zuma, Shuffler of Cabinets, Player of Golf, Shaker of Hands, King of Venda Financing, Stepfather of the Nation, I hereby greet you.
I wanted to be the first to congratulate you on your ascent to the highest office in the land, but on the day it happened I assumed that I was hallucinating and didn’t want to say anything for fear of alerting the drug squad. Nobody needs the cold, wet nose of a sniffer dog in his crotch first thing in the morning.
So I do apologise for the tardiness of my felicitations. It’s important to get in early before the names of all the fawners and flatterers blur into one. I want to be among those who stand out in your mind. Not because I want any special favours, but because … okay, it is the favours. I won’t list them now. That would be crass.
Comrade, you sure give good reshuffle. It’s as if an integrity bomb fell right into the trough while the Guptas and their pet weasels were in mid-snout. Actually, the timing could have been better. It was very accommodating of the Hawks to make sure the three stooges from India were safely out of the country by the time you slipped between those 500-thread Egyptian cotton sheets at Mahlamba Ndlopfu for the first time.
I don’t understand why people are complaining that you didn’t fire the likes of Bathabile Dlamini, Malusi Gigaba, Nomvula Mokonyani and that other one with the face. They are obviously there to make your new people look good. Diamonds always shine brighter when juxtaposed with gravel.
There are also complaints about you appointing DD Mabuza as your deputy. Something about him being involved in tender fraud and political assassinations in Mpumalanga. Hey. Times are tough. Everyone needs a side gig these days. Glad you gave the man a break.
It was also an inspired decision to appoint Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma as Minister in the Presidency. Every henhouse needs a fox. Keeps the chickens on their toes. I was, however, a bit surprised to see the minister of tweets get the boot. Fikile Mbalula was at least good for a laugh. Did you know he tweeted me a death threat the other day? Something about me losing an arm and a leg. He deleted it, though, which was nice of him. I must say I feel a lot safer now that he doesn’t have the entire police force at his disposal.
Bheki Cele is his perfect replacement and I’m not only saying that because we share a birthday. The original cat in the hat is an intimidating figure. If he walked into my house right now, I’d confess to stuff that I haven’t even done. And unless he killed Senzo Meyiwa himself, my bet is that he’s going to find out who did. Keep him away from lease deals and he’ll do just fine.
It was also a good move bringing Derek Hanekom back to head up the tourism ministry. Tourists from Europe like to know that a white man is in charge of that side of things. Nobody wants to go on holiday if it means having to watch their family being boiled up and eaten by cannibals.
I’m going to miss Lynne Brown and not just because I have a thing for lesbians, either. She reminds me of the cuddly aunt I never had. Sure, an aunt corrupt and incompetent in equal measure, but cuddly nevertheless.
The moment I saw Malusi Gigaba playing Candy Crush in parliament, I knew he was out. Brilliant move sending him back to home affairs to revoke the citizenship of that unholy triumvirate of Dementors from Saxonwold. After all, he granted them citizenship in the first place. It’s obvious that he has to fix what he broke. For us ordinary mortals, to visit home affairs is to visit hell. Gigaba actually has to work there. I couldn’t think of a more fitting punishment.
I don’t know much about his replacement, Nhlanhla Nene, except that he was finance minister once before. Anyone who got fired by Jacob Zuma during his nine-year reign of error is almost certainly a hardworking, honest person. Victims of the Msholozi purges should be given the Order of Mapungubwe, don’t you think?
I imagine Nhlanhla’s counterparts from first world countries might struggle to pronounce his name. Perhaps he could use his middle name, Musa? No, wait. That sounds too much like Musi. How about Mufasa? Everyone loves The Lion King.
Speaking of Musi, isn’t it hilarious how the DA fell for the EFF’s romantic advances only for the lady in red to start making moon eyes at their former lover. I foresee a cosy quadripartite arrangement in 2019. A foursome, in other words, with the SACP and Cosatu swinging both ways.
I’m going to miss David Mahlobo. He was quite possibly the worst spymaster in the world. Everyone could see him coming. And I mean everyone, not just Chinese Chelsea at the Mbombela massage parlour.
It was devilishly cunning of you to make Bathabile the Minister of Women. It’s a ministry that, like so many of our women, can be quietly ignored and then done away with when nobody is looking. There are, of course, women who objected to her appointment. One said she no longer identified as a woman and would henceforth consider herself a cat.
Hang on. What’s this about the Hawks searching author Jacques Pauw’s house? This is excellent news. I shoplifted Pauw’s book, The President’s Keepers, and it left me thoroughly depressed. There is no place for whistleblowers and investigative journalists in a democracy.
As you said in your State of the Nation address, “We should put all the negativity behind us because a new dawn is upon us.” Jacques Pauw needs to be put behind us because new dawn raids are upon us. He is guilty of committing the crime of journalism in the third degree and must be rendered to New York to plead his case to the hanging judges of the Pulitzer Board.
By the way, seven rhinos in the Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Game Reserve were slaughtered in a single day recently. Imagine if a school lost seven of its pupils in a day. You might be forgiven for thinking it was a badly run school. The poachers are obviously timing their raids to coincide with the live Lotto draw. Or perhaps the afternoon siesta. If you don’t do something about the management of Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife, there’ll soon be more poachers than rhinos in the park.
Speaking of solitary, thick-skinned brutes, I’m a bit worried about the way Jacob Zuma is carrying on. If I were him I’d be in the firepool with nothing but a snorkel sticking out. Instead, he has been swanning about like some kind of national hero. He arrived in a motorcade to the opening of the KZN Legislature and got out of the car laughing. These are not the actions of a man recently fired and one press conference away from 783 counts of corruption. Does he know something we don’t?
Before I forget, I have some land I’d like to donate to the underprivileged. It’s not much but I dare say you’d manage to squeeze four people and a goat onto it. Right now it’s just lying there unused and fallow, like me. Feel free to send your men around to expropriate it any time. I don’t want compensation. A position in your cabinet might be nice, though. I was thinking a new portfolio – the Ministry of Bacchanalian Affairs – would suit me well.
Anyway. Best of luck. Those of us not trying to get into Australia are counting on you.
620x349

A Letter to the Leader

Dear Comrade President Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma, Corrupter of the Weak, Don of Dubai, Capo dei Capi, Lord of the Beasts and the Fishes, Emperor of Nkandla.
Congratulations on still being on your feet. I mean that metaphorically, of course. I expect you’re probably lying down right now. And who could blame you? These are trying times and a man needs his rest. Besides, lying is your default position. I apologise. White monopoly capital made me say that. I will discipline myself this evening.
I imagine you were as surprised as anyone to learn that there’s a new book out in which you’re portrayed you as a cross between Al Capone and the leader of the 28s. I was outraged by the scurrilous parallels. For a start, Capone wore Brooks Brothers suits, Fedora hats and shoes by Salvatore Ferragamo. You wear Pending Law suits and shoes by Glenn Agliotti. I’ve never seen you in a hat. Is it because they don’t make them in butternut size? That’s headist, that is.
Also, the 28s would never have you because you don’t drink or take drugs and can’t be trusted. You don’t even have any tattoos. But that’s okay because you have your own gang with its own rules. You have to admit that The Cabinet is a bit of a lame name for a gang, but still. It’s the power you wield that counts. And let’s not forget you also have at least 350 loyal foot soldiers sitting in your safe house in Cape Town.
I won’t take up too much of your time. You’re doubtlessly very busy instituting defamation charges against one Jacques Pauw who wrote a scurrilous pack of lies in a fake ‘book’ titled The President’s Keepers, available at all reputable bookstores but selling fast so avoid the Christmas rush and get your copy now. What? Who said that? It’s almost as if Johann Rupert himself is dictating this to me. I shall undergo an exorcism right after disciplining myself.
I have never heard of an author called Pauw. He sounds foreign. Get your man Mahlobo to check him out. No, wait. You shifted Mahlobo out of state security and in to energy. It’s an obvious move as far as career paths go, if you think about it. Or not. Far be it for me to question your thinking when it comes to reshuffling your gang. I am nothing but a voter, the lowest on the food chain in a one-party democracy, and I am lucky to be alive.
So. Back to this alleged book. Pauw, by all accounts a fifth columnist from the fourth estate, claims that for the first four months of your presidency you were on the payroll of your friend Roy Moodley’s security company for R1-million a month, which, after tax, came to R1-million a month. So what? Everybody moonlights once in a while. Security guard wouldn’t be my first choice, but each to his own. Your day job only pays R250 000 a month. Nobody can live on that. Well, I suppose I could if I cut down on drinking during the week, but nobody with four wives and 22 children can live on that.
Pauw’s so-called book also claims that you never submitted tax returns for at least the first five years of your presidency and then put all your pawns in charge of SARS so you’d never have to cough up. If this is true, you have the wardens on Robben Island to thank. They allowed you to play chess, did they not? A harmless board game that teaches strategy. What could possibly go wrong?
Aren’t you glad you don’t live in America where prosecutors aren’t afraid to do their job? The FBI has just indicted Paul Manafort, one of Donald Trump’s former henchmen, merely because he took out a home loan and then mischievously spent some of it on buying another property. Imagine what they’d do to you?
That was a very smart move putting Shaun Abrahams in charge of the NPA. You should probably give him some sort of medal when all this is over. How about the Order of Medusozoa or, in terms that the uneducated can understand, the Order of the Jellyfish. If you prefer, there are many other spineless wonders to choose from.
By the way, your man Gigaba is doing a splendid job of keeping the wolves from your door. One thing mystifies me, though. What’s he talking about when he says we can’t afford a nuclear energy programme? Didn’t he get the memo from Moscow?
His medium-term budget, however, was a master class in deflection. By taking an unprecedented stab at the truth, your flak-catcher managed to distract attention away from you, allowing you to continue working on your retirement plans unhindered.
The ratings agencies seemed their usual gloomy selves after his speech, though. The aptly named Moody’s said the mini budget signalled “a marked credit-negative departure from earlier fiscal consolidation efforts”. What does this even mean? It’s like some kind of weird word salad. Ignore them. Oh, right. Sorry. To ignore and deny are policy mainstays that continue to serve you well.
Thing is, denials can get a bit stale over time. Taxpayers want to be kept entertained by increasingly outrageous claims of ignorance and innocence. That’s why it was such a refreshing change to have you reject instead of simply deny the slanderous filth in Pauw’s bestseller. Well, you didn’t reject all the allegations. Just the ones that dealt with your tax affairs. That’s the most important one, I suppose. It’s what brought Capone down. Then again, he didn’t have the cops, prosecutors and taxman in his pocket.
Your auditor-general appears to have caught some kind of rare honesty bug. You might want to get the exterminators in. He said this week that SOEs (ATMs to you) were “regressing” as a result of inadequate controls, monitoring and oversight. Nobody needs that kind of negativity.
But it’s not all bad news. Irregular government expenditure has increased by 55% since last year. It’s now standing at a healthy R45.6-billion. This must be some kind of record. Your home province has kept the flag flying by taking two of the top three spots in the highest single contributor category. Congratulations, then, to the KZN transport department for taking first place for wasting a breathtaking R3.9-billion. Also, big up to the health department which took bronze for squandering an equally impressive R3-billion.
I hear the ex-wife’s presidential campaign is being funded by cigarette smugglers. Good for her. The country would benefit hugely if more people started smoking. Old people are a drain on the economy. More smokers, fewer old people. Nkosazana is doing South Africa a great service. Please thank her for me.
I also heard that you told the high court you’re willing to establish an enquiry into state capture before the end of the year as long as you can dictate the terms of reference and appoint the chairman. Fair enough. What about getting Comrade Judge Chris Nicholson out of retirement? If it wasn’t for him, you’d be in your thirteenth year of a fifteen-year sentence by now. In theory, anyway. I’m sure if you had been tried back in 2009, you’d have come down with a bad case of the Shaiks and been released after a month or two.
What do you think about this Peter Hain character poking his nose where it doesn’t belong? One minute he’s fighting apartheid and the next he’s trying to bring down the ANC government. Typical bloody liberal. Can’t be trusted. He’s just jealous that you have the Guptas and he doesn’t. And now he wants to destroy a bunch of banks just because they laundered a few billion rands of our taxpayer’s money. Try to get him on the payroll before he causes even more trouble.
Anyway. Must dash. Got to renew my passport in case your ex becomes president of the ANC and then the country. You couldn’t live with her so I don’t see why I should have to.
A loota continua.
Dr Ben Trovato
Whip2