AND THE OSCAR GOES TO...
Dear Comrade Nathi
Igreet you in the name of our omnipresent and magnificent leader, His Excellency Jacob Gedley’hlekisa Zuma, He Who Thinks with the First Head and Decides with the Second Head.
The title might come as something of a surprise to those who are out of touch with current affairs, but you and I know that this title is fully deserved and is in keeping with other great leaders. Greats like “The all-powerful warrior who, because of his endurance and inflexible will to win, will go from conquest to conquest, leaving fire in his wake”, or Mobutu Sese Seko to the uninformed. Or His Excellency Sheikh Professor Alhaji Dr Yahya AJJ Jammeh, Babili Mansa, the “Great Bridge Builder” to his friends. And President Félix Houphouët-Boigny, “the doyen of African heads of state and tireless advocate of peace, concord, fellowship and dialogue”.
These great men also looked after their villages very well. Houphouët-Boigny made his the capital and built the world’s second-biggest cathedral there. The Great Bridge Builder named his home town after himself and ploughed money into it and “the all-powerful warrior” built highways that led to his home.
In line with them, our great leader is bringing bling to his village.
And so comrade, as I watch the antimajoritarian media, the right wing liberal opposition and red-clad protofascists tear you apart, I shake my head and think about how so out of touch they all are. Everywhere I go, I see people break into raucous laughter at the very mention of your name. I have even heard some of them say that you have taken the notion of village idiot to a national scale.
I ask myself why they do not appreciate the remarkable work you are doing in explaining the rights of the Dancer of Mahlamba Ndlopfu’s cattle and chickens to a better life. What do they think the ANC meant with the slogan A better life for all? Nowhere was there ever a qualification that the better life was for twolegged creatures only.
I have watched in amazement as your detractors have derided your film-making skills. I have been deeply offended as they laughed at the acting abilities of the Nkandla police force and the fire brigade. I think it is elitist for people to think that only actors should act. Why then would we have acting people running government departments and parastatals?
But what I have found most disturbing is the patronising tone of those who are asking why you are doing this to yourself. Clearly, they have no idea of the ordeal you went through when Mildred Oliphant ran you out of the department of labour when you dared to stand up to her.
If you ask me, I think you were absolutely right to stand up to that Mildred person. Who in this day and age calls herself Mildred?
But I digress. Those who are ridiculing you, Comrade Nathi, do not know you were languishing in some insignificant position on the ANC’s election lists and would have probably been a backbencher in Parliament had His Magnificence not plucked you out of obscurity.
Who wouldn’t be grateful for being taken out of the unemployment queue and given one of the most powerful departments in government? If they were in a similar position, would they scoff at the luxury sedans, bodyguards and a car to pick them up at the bottom of the aeroplane stairs so they did not have to endure looking at armpits on the bus to the main terminus?
That is why you must not be discouraged from taking your movie to all corners of the land – from Beaufort West to De Aar to Nkowankowa to Babanango to Koster.
That is why the parliamentary representatives of the glorious movement of our people must stand firm and never allow the right wing liberals and red-clad protofascists to ask pesky questions about paying back the money.
If they do not defend The Omnipresent you can imagine what would happen. They would be on the streets in hours and, given that most of their CVs are anaemic, would find themselves scrawling messages on cardboard placards.
So I just want you to know that I stand with you and all the other comrades. Do not be deterred by the fact that next week and the week after, next month and the month after, next year and after, things will get worse.
As the voices shouting at you will grow louder and increase in number, you must keep focused and know that you are doing this for yourself and your loved ones who have become accustomed to a certain standard of living and importance. You must stay on course as the nasty laughs spread, fully knowing that principle and morality do not fill the stomach.
And when the hungry and angry mobs storm the palace, and turf out the king and lynch those who buffered him, you will at least be content that you made hay while the sun shone.
Yours in the Second Phase of the Continuous Transition of the National Democratic Revolution towards the realisation of a national democratic society