In an attempt to clear the air about their intentions, the community of Orania extends an invitation to an unexpected potential resident. And though he may not look like their usual residents, based on his past and very public statements, Mr Qwelane might just be the perfect person to join them in common cause.
Dear Mr. Qwelane,
We in Orania are retiring folk and enjoy the quiet life, so we have only just heard of your brave deeds. Your words are like swords, Mr. Qwelane, so we offer our humble apologies that we are only paying homage to you now. Better late than never, we have always said, which might explain why we only got round to getting a Volkstaat together in 1990; but it’s also worth stating our support, if belated, for your appeal.
Also, some horrible tourist spraypainted our koeksuster monument pink during Pride week, and the women have only just finished scrubbing. As I’m sure you understand, our men were held back in the workplace too since there was no one to feed them, so we suffered a great loss of productivity. The lack of racial diversity makes it very hard to find good help here, but let me not put you off before we even start talking.
You have a point, my good man, and we like the way you think. We have said for many years that this diversity rubbish can only lead one way, and that way is down. Of course, you may be realising now what we have known for years: that the government’s backward brand of “democracy” is the very enemy of diversity – where the brave folks like us have to hide on a plaas that we bladdiewell paid for ourselves and whisper our views for fear of persecution while the Nigerians come and gooi mielies in our churches. No, we say. No! If the faggots can have their rainbow broekies and the Bantus can have whatever it is they have out back (we’re sure we don’t know), then we can have our Boerestaat. Live and let live. It is all in the name of peace, as you know. No more apologies, o nee, my broers en susters. O nee.
Now, Mr. Qwelane, we know you are black, but we like the way you think, so we are willing to overlook it just this once. You’ve proved your belief in the old ways. Just between you and me, you are a man who stands up for traditional values and doesn’t apologise, so if anyone should understand our unflinching stance on diversity, of course it is going to be you. No fear of whining about ‘isms’ from you, oh no! You, my man, are the leader when it comes removing the insurgents, nailing your colours to a mast. You – in your infinite strength of character – have found it in your heart even to stand up for Uncle Bob, so maligned in his old age, with lots of favour but zero fear, and you’re probably the last SA citizen standing who isn’t whingeing about the election. So let me not ramble any further and get straight to the point of this letter, before the Zanu-PF beats us to it and snaps you up as their mascot. The Ugandans already bladdiewell beat us last time, and let me tell you we in Orania are fokken siek en sat vir suig aan die agterste fokken speen, if you’ll pardon my French. So we are bladdiewell going to get in there this time before anybody else does.
Ag anyway, Jon – can I call you Jon? – we in Orania need more men like you. We pride ourselves on building a state on the solid old pillars, where men are men, sheep are scared, and no one is afraid to speak his mind, as long as he votes for the FF+. Did the pioneers of Orania flinch when those shirt-lifting liberals shook their manicured fists at us on ever-limper wrists? We did not. We stood, tall and proud, with a koekblik in our left hand and a Mauser in our right, and with our remaining hand we built the koeksuster monument. And it is that hand that we would like to extend to you, Mr. Qwelane. We believe you’d fit right in here.
You’re not our usual type, if you know what I mean – but you have the right ideas, and our PR team keeps telling us we must stop looking racist because the native dollar is going to bring in big tourism one of these days and you know the blacks don’t really belong on a plane and they can’t fokken swim to save democracy so we better start bringing in the Greyhound bus or at least a taxi or three to the more local inland destinations. We think you’d be really happy here, a great citizen, with your solid family values and no-BS attitude. You’d be free to judge anyone you like – separatism is not frowned upon here, so we’d all be on the same page. You might take a little time to settle in – we find the Bantus sometimes take a little time to learn to appreciate the jukskei or the kududrolverspoeg – but both of them have gone ahead in leaps and bounds and one of them even won a ‘100% Boer’ t-shirt in the last Orania Olympics and Braai-Off. We think the other one was so pissed off it was him that planted that rogue ANC vote from our region in the last election, maar nou ja, jy moet mos die Bantus die klein goeters vergewe as jy wil hê hulle moet goed leer boer.
Please find enclosed a token of esteem from the private collection of Tannie Betsie Verwoerd, a beautiful crocheted blue-and-orange doily with which to wipe your brow when the pressure of holding the flag for us real men becomes too much. We have also enclosed a pamphlet from our local estate agents. We have a lovely spot out back that would just suit you.
Should you be interested, we would love to welcome you into our cosseted community. You are a real man, whose views on diversity and solid family values so perfectly reflect ours. Please visit us any time. We will gladly offer you some tea and bobotie, and as long as the older generation isn’t looking, we won’t make you use the enamel bowl.
With warm regards and an ongoing battle cry,
Secretary to the Boshoff Estate and Leaders’ Council of Orania DM
* Disclaimer: This is satire. It is entirely made up. Pietie Pompies does not – we hope – exist, he does not represent the Boshoff family or Orania, and we sincerely hope his views are fictitious too. We do not actually believe black people can’t swim, we welcome Nigerians in church, we have nothing against a rainbow broekie and we do not condone the use of the word ‘Bantu’. The author is a card-carrying Boeremeisie, but she prefers South Africans to live together without prejudice or Apartheid relics of one kind or another. No homosexuals were harmed in the production of this column.
Marelise van der Merwe and Daily Maverick grew up together, so her past life increasingly resembles a speck in the rearview mirror. She vaguely recalls writing, editing, teaching and researching, before joining the Daily Maverick team as Production Editor. She spent a few years keeping vampire hours in order to bring you each shiny new edition (you're welcome) before venturing into the daylight to write features. She still blinks in the sunlight.
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