Sunday, September 27, 2020

Sunday Standard’s most outrageous awards

Most loved and most hated award
Ian Khama.
Wasn’t it this man who introduced the much despised 30% alcohol levy and called Batswana a lazy bunch whilst asking women to have more babies?
But then again the man is of royal blood, power is in his hands, and the nation finds that irresistible. He practically has ministers eating out of his hands and which woman doesn’t want to take out a comb and discipline the oh-so-attractive president’s stubborn afro.

Most persistent award
Phandu Skelemani.
The man fought tooth and nail to make his voice heard on the Zimbabwe issues. Every week, newspapers cover his briefings on the same issues week after week. Botswana does not recognize Mugabe as president, blah blah, blah.
Phandu Skelemani made his name a household name to the ever ignorant public by disowning Robert Mugabe from the Zim high chair.
And he has become one of the most popular people in Zimbabwe, thanks to BTV, whose satellite signal is easily picked up in Zim.

Still standing award
Robert Mugabe.
His people are going through trying times one after the other; they have had their families massacred, others are missing their loved ones. They are constantly fighting off hunger pangs while preventing themselves from catching flies for dinner…his country has recently introduced a 500 billion dollars note that’s not enough for a bus fare…but he claims his country is performing quite well and blames the Europeans for trying to stir up trouble in his country. “There is no cholera in Zimbabwe, if its there it was bought by the British,” he pronounces. “Good times are in sight.”
Robert Mugabe has dragged his people through all kinds of hell but he is still the president and still going strong…sort of.

Bootlicker of the year award
Oliphant Mfa.
Who can forget Oliphant Mfa’s sudden change of heart once Khama was inaugurated as president. The man did practically everything under the sun to impress the boss. Even went as far as giving him constant appraisals in public.
“I think Khama should even rule this country for more than a third term,” he said.
Bootlicking doesn’t pay, at the end of the day it earned him the boot out of office.

Most daring award
Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi.
The Honourable Minister went around the country feeding Batswana false information about the media bill.
“This bill was asked for by media practitioners themselves; they are the people who have long been pleading for this bill to be considered,” she said. Venson faced the wrath of angry journalists who couldn’t remember a time they sat down with the honourable one to ask for such a bill. The poor woman was attacked week after week in every newspaper except for the Daily News and BTV (typical).
Daring indeed!

Loser of the year award
Otsweletse Moupo.
The man got stranded in Europe for goodness sake! He had some of his assets auctioned to the public, had huge monetary issues (debt is more like it). His marriage fell apart, and his own comrades had no faith in his capabilities.
He is probably the main reason his party is the butt of jokes in politics. (Hey, why did Zidane butt-headed Matteresi at the World Cup? Because he called his dad a BNF activist).
What about when he went to Nigeria to ask for ‘divine intervention’? Back home, we call it ‘diwatcho’….Otsweletse Moupo needs to take a break for a year and lose his loser status. And guess what, the man wants to be our president!

The fall and fall and fall of the great
Nchindo and Nkate.
2008 brought public humiliation and revealed skeletons in the closets of the Nchindos and the Nkates of this world. What with the big man Nchindo taken to court for more charges than Michael Jackson himself. His son came along to face his own charges, too. The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree now, does it?
Nkate’s ministry has been the biggest failure of late, what with the allowance sagas, mysterious circumstances surrounding dying Batswana students in Malaysia. And he was allegedly being sponsored by NIIT for his campaigns.
The man even lost the faith of his own people in Ngamiland who claimed that he was more involved in being a minister of the city rather than improve their constituency, which happens to be the most underdeveloped in the country as we speak.

Hypocrites of the year Award
BBA audience.
There is no debating on this one; big brother Africa audience is the most hypocritical of them all. After Tawana (proudly Motswana) became herself and did what she knew best in the house, they judged her and called her immoral and loose.
Yet they had previously voted for Richard to win the cash prize. Richard was a married man who was freely cheating on his wife with a girl he met on the show in front of more than a million viewers and he was the hero, how interesting? Tawana wasn’t even married!

Bummer of the year award
The economy.
The recent global crisis had everyone in jitters when it became evident that Botswana would be amongst the countries hit by the madness. Debswana has fallen the biggest victim as issues of job cuts and mine closures are currently doing the rounds.
People no longer have money to splash on the diamond industry and Botswana is called rich because of its diamonds so one can only imagine what lies ahead.

The grinch award
Khama took away a Happy Christmas from the beer drinking majority of Botswana when he reinstated the much hated 30% alcohol levy which was originally meant to be 70% on all beverages. Normally, when it approached Christmas time, civilians would stock up on food and alcohol. Now the poor children are not going to eat as much as they used to as the budget money has shifted more towards the beer buying.

Biggest Jester
Mr Oscar Kubara.
He grandly pledged to the nation that Munhumutapa Broadcasting Corporation (MABC TV), the organisation of which he is CEO, would sponsor the national premier league with no less than P60m that they did not have! Never mind that the pay television station was and still is yet to go on air. The last time we heard of Kubara, he was denying ‘allegations’ that he intended to sponsor Township Rollers as soon as his secret funders kick in.

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Alpha Female of the Year
Tawana Lebani.
She takes this year’s brazen alpha female award, the Big Brother Africa 3 housemate from Botswana won mental and physical tasks earning status as Head of House four times. Talk about girl on top. She didn’t allow her sexual urges to lie dormant during her stay in the Big Brother house either; our girl went for what she wanted, when she wanted it.

Most glorified, though not undeserving
Miriam Makeba.
Though many might want to rap my fingers for blasphemy… I noted that Miriam Makeba’s eulogies spoke of her great humanitarian spirit, her brave outspokenness against apartheid that had her exiled from South Africa for 31 years by the apartheid government. Wouldn’t it have been interesting if we heard more of the juicy bits about Miriam Makeba too, as was revealed in Hugh Masekela’s autobiography, Still Grazing? That’s evidence of a life well spent, right?

Pirates of the year.
UB Students
Forget about the sea pirates off the coast of Somalia.
After No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency was touted as Botswana film industry’s break through, the pirates of UB (that would be a majority of the student population at the tertiary institution) already owned a copy of the movie before it was even screened in the country. Considering the amount of the plundering of music, movies and (cough) cheating at exams, could it be that pirating is a core subject that cuts across all disciplines at UB?

Biggest farce of the year
Despite arguments advanced by players in the fledging music industry against the revised liquor regulations clubs were instructed to close at 10pm during weekdays and 2am on weekends, in the government’s effort to clamp down on alcohol abuse. Dare I say there are those of us who actually go to clubs and pubs not to ah-booze but just enjoy the music. Music lovers have been robbed! Why hasn’t anyone mentioned alcohol abuse intervention programmes?

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Sunday Standard September 27 – 3 October

Digital copy of Sunday Standard issue of September 27 - 3 October, 2020.