TONGUE IN CHEEK
Forget Santa Claus for he is an enemy agent — behold Santa Thulas, firepool man and saviour of the unemployed
If the son of man could feed 5,000 hungry souls with one sardine all those centuries ago, this compassionate patriot could surely pull off the miracle of creating two million jobs just in time for an important election.
In a cushy state-sponsored mansion somewhere in a leafy, secure suburb of Pretoria, shielded from all the evils of this world including rolling blackouts, rampant crime and the vandalism of public infrastructure, a man called Thulas sat wondering late into the night what he could do for his people this Christmas.
Should he employ more labour inspectors to deal with unscrupulous employers? No, that didn’t sound too exciting.
Could he perhaps iron out the pressing issues plaguing the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) offices across South Africa so that beneficiaries could be spared the agony of waiting in long queues all day? No, no, no, this too didn’t look appealing.
Especially with an election on the horizon, he needed to think out of the box.
Those UIF offices are no different from the apartheid-era pass book and employment offices. You would actually think people who go there to claim their dues are being done a favour. Even the part-time vanguard of workers and full-time howler and meddler in ANC party politics, the trade union federation Cosatu, raised concerns about this matter recently.
It says it has been reporting these pressing matters to Thulas since 2020, but nothing seems to have come of it. Either its pleas never reached his patriotic ears or he has been too busy thinking about much bigger and more exciting things.
Remember, this Thulas fellow is the same patriot who, because of his immense love for his country and his people, decided at some point to bestow upon them one of humanity’s most innovative creations – a firepool.
So deeply rooted is his love for his people that when he constructed the revolutionary pool at the monument of misgovernance and entitlement to public funds, Nkandla, he didn’t pull any punches. The department he (be) headed at the time, Public Works, spent R3.9-million to construct this amazing pool that we were told was capable of putting out a volcano within minutes.
This was a man who loved his country and its then No 1 citizen so much that he even ensured taxpayers paid for the well-being of said citizen’s chickens and cattle. But does a man’s love for his country, his president and his people have any limits? Not for Thulas. He then decided that, well, no, he hadn’t shown enough love, so he decided to add a spaza shop to the package.
You know that when a man loves his country like Thulas does he never stops thinking of coming up with more innovative ways to pamper, er, some of its citizens. You see, it is possible he may have added a skilled Pakistani national as the icing on the cake to turn the Nkandla spaza shop into a thriving enterprise had the tjatjarag media not misled the public into questioning all this pampering of No 1.
The real Santa Claus must be ashamed. He must be banned, actually, or detained without trial on Robben Island.
In the festive spirit of giving, Thulas is now playing Santa. And two million jobless South Africans will be the beneficiaries of a rare special gift – jobs – created by this genius within the next few months.
Santa Thu wants to add that many new jobs before South Africans go to the polls sometime next year. Now that’s the mark of a man who truly loves his country: Wait 20 years until more than 12 million people are unemployed, then bang, out of the blue, create two million jobs in a few months. Just like that.
If he pulls it off, it would be the first miracle since the man from Nazareth fed a crowd of 5,000 hungry souls with one fish until their stomachs ached from overindulging.
In fact, the real Santa Claus must be ashamed. He must be banned, actually, or detained without trial on Robben Island for failing to come up with such an innovative gift package all these years.
I have long suspected that Santa Claus is an enemy agent, a puppet of the West who has no care about the development of our sovereign nation. Because how else can a man whose sole role in this sorry world is to come bearing gifts be beaten to it by the firepool man?
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But hang on, Thulas himself doesn’t seem to believe entirely that his plan will work. He told Bloomberg in an interview: “Whether or not that is achievable, I don’t know.”
I’m not sure how Thulas’s boss will react should this promise fail to bear fruit. By the way, that very boss said this week that he won’t be sharing his assessment of his subordinates with us, the public. It’s classified information.
Yawn the beloved country, for these miraculous miracles are not yet at an end. DM
Mr Styles is the former president of the Organisation for Stylish People of South Africa (Osposa). He is against anything and anyone unstylish.
This story first appeared in our weekly Daily Maverick 168 newspaper, which is available countrywide for R29.