Defend Truth


Sunday in South Africa – The New Day of Hope


Ian von Memerty is a Zimbabwean-born South African entertainer, actor, singer, musician, writer, director and television presenter.

After the recent weeks of turbulence, Sundays are no longer days of rest. But they are days of hope, in which ministers – not the religious kind – might just be preaching messages of a different kind of deliverance.

Hallelujah. Let us give thanks. There are ANC’s ministers who are truly ministering – like in the old days! Back then, Sundays were called ‘the day of rest’. No more! Now we feverishly read the papers and jab at the refresh button on our preferred internet news site whilst fighting traffic to the mall, and then burning beef on the braai.

Take last Sunday – South Africa had just had a dreadful week. The #FeesMustFall campaign had been hijacked by some immoral, spoilt anarchists who had invaded a fantasy by Richard Adams and successfully managed temporarily to do away with tertiary education in South Africa altogether.

Shaun Abrahams, wielding delusions of political adequacy and spouting words of political expediency, had served papers on Pravin Gordhan. Worst of all, Thuli Madonsela, our outgoing Mother Theresa of Morality, had been outmaneuvered by Jacob Zuma – and had been stopped from releasing her ‘State Capture’ report.

And then came Sunday the 16th. Pravin Gordhan, surely a strong argument that pharmaceutical degrees are vital to the health of South Africa, gave us the best inoculation possible. He revealed the in-depth reasons why the Guptas were seen as the scavenging hyenas of the hierarchy. He managed to give us a glimpse of what we would have seen in Madonsela’s report; and with one well administered jab in the arse left Shaun Abrahams winded, wounded and weak –kneed – a position that he is surely familiar with by now.

And just to give us dessert for Sunday lunch, leading figures of the ANC came out in support of Gordhan, AND we read the questions that that Jacob, the elusive eel of the elite, was writhing around to make sure he did not have to answer Mum Madonsela. And so we all retired for our post-prandial naps feeling a bit better. Actually I went off to do a show, since as the second-oldest profession in the world, performers are not granted the luxury of weekend introspection. Rather it is our time to reap the rewards of raucous relaxation – and I thank the sold-out house that made that possible.

And then came last week. Again, it just kept getting worse. First our new Public Protector eagerly revealed herself as Pinocchio, the puppet with no strings. If only she too had a nose that grew when she lied – she would be pole-vaulting to work. Slathering on the spittle of cowardice, South Africa is about to leave the Rome Convention – also known as the International Criminal Court. Well, it is understandable – when the great eel is doing everything possible to make sure he never ends up in court here in South Africa; this is proof that he is just thinking ahead! And universities continued to burn.

But then – like the salve that soothes the anal burn of dysentery – came Sunday. Deputy Finance Minister Jonas opened the hyenas’ lair, and the bones of the Guptas’ carrion feasting were laid bare for us to pore over.  Some other woman, who has wisely decided to remain anonymous after revealing the labyrinth tunnels of corruption, fled the country. And Jackson Mthembu, like a master chef who has been called into save a failed banquet, stepped forward.

In the most devastating attack on the ANC ever seen by a member of the party elite, he unleashed the dogs of division. “Jacob and the top six should resign”. “The ANC was showing the middle finger to South Africa and the millions of people” who had entrusted their future to the ANC, and given the party years of loyalty and belief. When the chief whip of the ANC says, “the ANC is worse than the apartheid government” you can be fairly certain that the toilets of Luthuli House are flushing more than normal. Because quite frankly, the ANC must be shitting themselves.

But for the plebs, from the tax-paying middle class struggling to stay afloat, to the disempowered and disappointed mass of unemployed and exploited South Africans – Sunday lunch went down a little better. Because Jackson, Jonas, and Gordhan are clearing our palates of the sour taste of lies and betrayal; and making our Sunday afternoons a little more tranquil.

The party that peacefully led us into democracy is not just the party of the three little pigs Baleka, Jacob and Des – all waiting for their house to be blown down. We don’t have just one wolf, but rather a whole of pack of wolf-whistle blowers – and please, God, they are going to huff and puff until they blow the house down. 

Whatever; even though I will be doing two shows next Sunday, I can hardy wait for the high holy day of political revelations. They make each week bearable. We can now look forward to the weekend. And who knows, we might even get the best Xmas present this year (since Xmas day falls on a Sunday). We might open our Xmas paper and read, “JZ is gone”; and once again we will believe in the story of the wise men. DM


Please peer review 3 community comments before your comment can be posted

MavericKids vol 3

How can a child learn to read if they don't have a book?

81% of South African children aged 10 can't read for meaning. You can help by pre-ordering a copy of MavericKids.

For every copy sold we will donate a copy to Gift of The Givers for children in need of reading support.