Friday, September 18, 2020

Carry on Panicking: Even post presidency

He looked at me and said,

“You know Prof, with him; you don’t need to be a rocket scientist, nor a super genius let alone a Sangoma nor a fortune teller to tell us that he was just a spaza”.

You know Prof,

“God works in mysterious ways and we can only thank him for all that is unfolding, he continued”.  “I mean truth be told, Nnanayana hit the bulls eye by telling the nation the truth about those twins and their J grades at that prestigious private school.  I think their record still stands”. He said,

“Now one of them recently stated that he harbors an ambition of becoming the President of the Republic of Botswana.  “Waitse on reading that article in the news paper, all that I could say was Siiiees!!!, Mo gase go re tlwaela, ke go fetelela”.

“This family must be told, nako di chenchile, ga se nako tsele o tsaya ngwana fela wa gago, o mo dira Brigadier.  Their pursuit for state power has become pathological. They are here to rule, and never to be ruled. They are here to lead and never to be led. They are here to be respected and never to respect”.

“ They must be told that Botswana is not a pseudo democratic monarch”.  “Ga e le go re ba e horile or ba di horile, go tsile go nna masisi, they must know.  No more nonsense!!!,”

“Bo Mathanda helele, bo jakalas ba opposition must know this is not the time go bintsha megatla. There is just no time for MANASA”. He continued and looked very sad. “No more time for praise poetry, because clearly Masisi is just happens to be the target of the moment. There is no more time for see no evil, hear no evil. No more time to be hoodwinked by the ME NICE attitude with our poor grandmothers being made to dance and ululate endlessly whenever, the self proclaimed philanthropist visits their rural areas to donate blankets and que up for soup and fat cakes. Pose up for a photo shoot with the rural poor grannies and grand fathers and then make it viral, under the pretext that he cares. He does not, but rather takes advantage of their status. That is pornography of poverty Prof, and it must stop, he said”.

“Waitse kana mme if you can read “Democracy Under Siege: the Presidency and Executive Powers in Botswana by Professor Mpho Gregory Molomo, you will realize that his pen was prophesying. Molomo stated that after Khama ascended to the reign of power, he embraced populist and autocratic tendencies. Molomo stated in his manuscript that Khama was contemptuous of established norms of governance.

For his part, the deported good Professor of Political Science at the University of Botswana, Prof Ken Good warned us on Ian Khama. Good stated that, since Ian Khama succession to Presidency, there was an escalation in the militarization and personalization of power, seeing military personnel entering government in increased numbers.

Recently, Tshetlha has become, the private media darling, with the media giving him un-necessary coverage. When one tries to read through most of the so called interviews, you will easily pick that, it was mainly a talk show as opposed to interviewing Tshetlha.  Now that he has been snubbed by the public media he runs to private print media, the very same he bashed during his tenure in Presidency. As an attention seeker and a ME NICE,   he will not survive.

The Weekend Post of the 3rd September 2018, carried a story by one Ketumile Ramatiti with a title heading “Khama rejects Magang led BDP delegation” According to the story, Former President Lt Gen Ian Khama has rejected the inclusion of former cabinet minister, David Magang in the Elders Council meant to reconcile him with his predecessor Mokgweetsi Masisi following a big fallout between the two. The Elders Council according to Weekend Post met with Khama for the first time to lay the ground for reconciliation efforts. It is at this meeting that Khama, who was not willing to bend told the council that he would not want to engage with a committee which includes Magang, whom he believes is biased against him, the paper stated”.

Khama is reportedly not impressed by the comments attributed to Magang in one of the local publications, where the Phakalane supremo was taking a swipe at the former President.

Does Rre Magang really give a hoot? I asked myself on reading that story. Whether Tshetlha wants him or not in that delegation is of no consequence.

Whilst the Elders Council must be applauded for their good gesture and their attempt to reconcile Tshetlha and Sissy Boy, they must however, be warned that in Tshetlha they are dealing with an egocentric, megalomaniac.  He thinks he is special.

Did Festus Mogae and the late Sir Marquette Masire interfere with the way he was governing? Did they not give him respect and space to rule.  Why can’t he do the same for Masisi?

“Why should anyone crawl to him, kneel down and beg him?  Really!!. A colleague recently asked. “In future the Elders Council must not bother. Tshetlha doesn’t really care; he is fully aware of his actions and is doing everything deliberately. I do not subscribe to the excuse often given that he was made to be what he is. That is just a lousy and clumsy excuse. It is in fact just Kak!!!, he said.

“ Probably he might have seen a loop hole in the constitution and thinks he can come back and Tshetlhanyana serve as his Vice President. What’s worrisome is the irresponsible writings by some of our journalists where now they are tripping over themselves to have a talk show disguised as interviews with that attention seeker. My colleague stated.

Take for instance the recent story titled “Khama’s second coming will be more ferocious.

“For as long as his successor was a compliant “Mo rage Joe”, Khama was quite happy to go through the motions of adhering to democratic rule.  Khama wanted a Mo rage Joe that he could control by pulling strings from Mosu barracks. Even among the Masisi camp, consensus is that the outcome of last weekend’s primary elections in the ruling party has put Khama in a very strong position to acquire such a toy president”.

“ Supposing though that Khama somehow wins the battle for the soul and heart of the Botswana Democratic Party and installs a Mo rage Joe character as president, Botswana will not only be back to April 1, 2008, some individuals and groups will be subjected to the fury of a thousand suns”

The foregoing is just unfortunate, fictitious and has the hall marks of instilling fear ÔÇô Moral panic so to speak.  In his book, Folk Devils and Moral Panics, the creation of the Mods and Rockers, Stanley Cohen wrote about the role of the media in the shaping of legislation, through the social phenomenon of moral panics. The term ‘moral panics’ very much belongs to the distinctive voice of the late Sixties, its tone was especially resonant in the subjects then shared by the new sociology of deviance and the embryonic cultural studies.

Calling something a ‘moral panic’ however does not imply that this something does not exist or happened at all and that reaction is based on fantasy, hysteria, delusion and illusion or being duped by the powerful.

The attribution of the moral panic label means that the ‘thing’s’ extent and significance has been exaggerated, in itself compared with other more reliable, valid and objective sources and or  compared with other, more serious problems. This labeling derives from a willful refusal by the journalists to take public anxieties seriously.

What is more important to read from the so called fall out is that a ritual of sorts tends to mark the fall of a dictator. His torture chambers are now opened, and the electrical cables and bloodstains will testify to his crimes.  As light shines into those fetid cells, emotional cleansing begins. Responsibilities are understood and must be assumed. Alleged corrupt practices that took place under his watch MUST be nipped in the bud.

In each generation, a few public figures come along who have a personal magnetism that makes strangers care deeply about them. Call it star power, call it charisma, this infrequent gift is akin to the power that great actors have. In real life when charismatic politicians speak, they are able to turn a room full of strangers into a community rich in shared meaning, just as a great actor creates such a community within a theatre.

In Sissy Boy we believe. The ONLY thing that Sissy Boy and the party can do ke go re Ba fase Tsiii!! Up to until everyone asks “Sa reng stress mo lesoleng”

Very soon he and they will be yesterday’s news and we will move on.

*Thabo Lucas Seleke writes from Seleme Farm, Rasesa

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