Dear Sidney Pilane
After that recent storm, I now write to tell you that I am happy for you. You see, you have once again proved to be the only Advocate in politics who understands the law. And yet you never make too much noise about it. It is for this reason that I admire you the same way I do the famed American stealth fighter jet.
Obviously because you too, go about your business like the stealth fighter jet! You see very little of it; you hear almost nothing when it approaches for attack. And when it finally strikes, it will be too late to hit back. That’s the time you hear its roaring engines… long after it has caused damage. Ahead of the landmark decision on that controversial constitution shoved under the cover of darkness into the Registrar’s bag of many file folders, the B-52s, the R-9s and S-5s were making all the noise in the sky, exciting their fanatical admirers who were cheering blindly at their raucous trails, while the stealth fighter was loud in its silence of deceit, with only a few even believing it could overpower those noisy ones with their superior numerical strength.
Now the irritating noise of the loud bombers is subdued, while the stealth fighter continues to leave all in suspense, wondering where it will strike next. It’s indeed true mister, that empty vessels make the loudest noise. Didn’t I assure you in my last letter to you that you will soon be proving your haters wrong? You see why, Dlodlo, I always implored you to remain calm in the midst of all the misplaced hatred on you? Now they are all clutching at straws, each man trying from their own corner to find something else to pin on you. These people should have learnt from Ndaba and Co, that wena ga o wa bana.
Those guys were not as foolish and timid as they were purported to be. They knew that dealing with you on matters of the law was no child’s play. I heard them call Ndaba and Co. some names, among them Ditete. The tables have since turned, and now they are again blaming the poor Ndaba for letting you loose and letting you to take charge at the orange movement, which has by extension allowed you to be in the mix of those in control under the tattered blue umbrella. They bragged that bone they were going to deal with you constitutionally, and I warned them, you will recall, that where the law is concerned, you are never wrong.
I warned them against fighting you legally, and even painted them a picture of you being the alligator in a raging river, while they are only mongrels trying to fight you inside the water. Kana even if the mongrels were to try to wrestle you out of the water, they would slip and fall back into your trap. So tota the mongrels were always bound to lose. You see, mongrels, like those fighter jets, are always the noisy ones; barking and scratching the ground in animated fashion, but without the killer bite, while the alligator, like the stealth fighter, would always be calm, and silently lying in wait, until the time is right to strike.
Now look at the mongrels as they scurry away with tails tucked between their legs! They do not even want to look back. They are now thinking of rather forming alliances to fight from a different turf. When they were warned of your Terminator powers, and that you were out to dismantle their umbrella, they teased those who warned, calling them CryBabies. Now the Terminator Alligator has struck, and The Gladiators are seeking refuge at the older enemy territory. So well done, Mr Law who doesn’t brag about it! You once again proved that you are a man of few words and more actions – after all, they say, actions speak louder than words. Banna ba ne ba tsositse modumo, ba ikgasola ka go itse molao, not realising that what they claim to know is not even half of what you know yourself. Nna tota as you will attest, I have always read petty jealousies in all of this. Your success story is too complicated for them to comprehend. They can only fight you politically now, by perhaps making decisions that are legal, but will leave you with little control of things. I now hear they are in talks with those they called CryBabies.
I hear too, that you are also talking to them – the ones you called renegades. Isn’t it ironic then, that the one constant feature in all of this, is the very one you and The Gladiators gave unpalatable names? Come to think of it; for different reasons, the Alligator and The Gladiator hated the purple guys. Now you are both courting them. For self-serving reasons of course! When it suited both of you, the Ndabas were cry-babies and renegades, now they are the go-to guys for meeting an end? This politics thing really is confusing.
I mean, look at you – gatwe you are busy o phosha Ndaba whom you labelled a renegade and a rebel; on the other hand, The Gladiator is busy cajoling the very same man he labelled corrupt and greedy. Elsewhere, SisiBoy o shimega the same guy he used to praise and worship as the incarnation of God. Tota lware lo ntse jang mapolotiki lo tshameka ka ditlhogo tsa rona jaana? Just look at this other one: the very same media houses he used to scorn, ridicule and stifle of business are the ones he is running to for cover when the tables are being turned on him. And like the ever gullible electorate who always vote back the very people who make them suffer, the same media houses are entertaining his proposals for engagement.
The same media houses that have become destitutes because of him! SisiBoy is reading the script and realises that even if he too can supress the press, the same press will in future come out to give him the platform he needs to hit back at detractors. But what can we say? We are a forgiving nation. We forget very quickly. A man sneaks into your house to sleep with your wife, and the next day when his wife sends him packing, you are the one giving him shelter again in your own home? You have to admire us, Batswana, for such a forgiving spirit.
Check out how Kgama has out of the blue forgiven The Gladiator for all the things he used to say about him. He is even on record saying he admires The Gladiator. Look at how The Gladiator himself has forgiven that Lime Party Leader who once called him RaBaki. The same Lime Party Leader who once told The Gladiator to fok off and shut up for good on that day you guys were discussing the Moshupa by-election. And look at how Ndaba has forgiven you for calling him a rebel. In all this, it is always us, your followers, who are left with an egg on the face.
The one moment we praised you, Dlodlo, only because that Lime Party Leader and The Gladiator, our leaders, were praising you as well. Now they are vilifying you, we have to do the same. Eish… Waitse I admire men like you – men who like chameleons can change colour and allegiance several times and still keep their followers. Yet tota nna I still believe you guys are playing on our ignorance, naivety and fanaticism. Nna tota the way I see it, you guys have always been buddies and you have always entertained each other when we are not looking, and then come out to pretend you abhor one another.
From way back we have heard of that Lime Party Leader sharing business interests with the Kgamas and Seretses; we have known you, Dlodlo, to fight on the side of the Kgamas; I have known The Gladiator to be bosom buddies with that Sadique guy he recently labelled corrupt; we have always known you and The Gladiator to be associates who even trade cases; we have always known you to be close to Kgosi; I have always known Kgosi to be close to The Gladiator; and even you, Dlodloman, have confessed to having intimate meetings with the Lime Party Leader.
I have known The Gladiator to be close to Kgama, even at one point reported to have sought financial assistance from the man. Kana e bile at that time, he is said to have been close to joining Kgama’s party. Yet somehow, somewhere at some time, you guys present a picture of people in combat. I mean, what is this thing we hear that The Gladiator is working on a political strategy with Kgama now? Kana e bile maloba I was thinking aloud, gore: if indeed The Gladiator represents Kgama and Kgosi in court, and they win the case, will he go on to prosecute them again should he end up becoming President in 2019? Akere he has promised to start with them on his crackdown on corrupt people?
Kante wena oe leba jang kgang e Bra Dlodloman? It is in times like these that I am reminded of the likes of Gabriel Kanjabanga. Kante ene o kae? Could he too, like you, be stealth in his approach to all these political shenanigans unfolding before our eyes? Could his be an insidious move that will come out in the open at the eleventh hour? Kana these political games of Botswana need one to be always vigilant and on their toes. I am only waiting for your next move as well. I wonder what it is you are cooking now, but whatever it is, it must be intriguing. I see some men are having sleepless nights over your silence. What could it be you are planning next Dlodlo? A resignation from the BMD perhaps?
Of Kings and Pawns: Tlogela malele ao Mma-V
MmaV, akere I warned you about the people whom I said did not really care about you but were using you to push their own agendas?
Where were they when you needed them the most last Thursday and Friday at the High Court and in Kang respectively? Didn’t I say in my previous letters to you that their exaggerated support for you was fake and only self-serving, and that you should disassociate yourself from them?
And did you listen MmaV?
You see now what they have done to you? They deserted you during your hour of need and did not want to be seen around you both at the High Court and even later in Kang on Friday.
And I tell you, now that the dust has somewhat settled, they will think you have forgotten about how they deserted you and sweet talk you into thinking that it was just part of a strategy to a bigger picture.
Going towards the congress, they were already dismissing your chances, especially after a number of MPs and councillors you always thought were on your side revealed at the eleventh hour that they were with SisiBoy.
All the other reasons they give for not being by your side are just lies. They did not want the embarrassment of your loss to hit them on the face, especially right under the noses of such flambouyants as that Balopi chap and the Tebelelo woman that you seem to loathe with a passion.
Your so-called allies just couldn’t stand the heat and did as I had always warned you – leave you to burn in Guma’s hot kitchen alone. You should have listened to me MmaV. See how you had to then throw in the towel in shame although you tried to hide it with those flimsy excuses you projected as reasons for your chickening out?
You really disappointed me MmaV. You disappointed even those who supported you. You disappointed the delegates and all those who had prepared a vote for you. You disappointed the masses who were looking forward to an epic contest of numerical supremacy.
You disappointed the opposition party cadres who were rooting for your victory in the hope that you would be easier to beat in October than SisiBoy. You actually even disappointed SisiBoy himself, who must have been looking forward to the contest.
The result would have allowed him to gauge the level of dissent and dissatisfaction against him within the party. Now he will never be sure. You could tell from his facial expression the first time it was announced you had asked your name to be removed.
The way he shook his head, you could tell he was not amused you pulled out. He must have relished the idea of humiliating not just you, but his nemesis Kgama whom he knew all along was the real deal in this contest. And more than anything else, he must have thought: What a waste of resources for nothing!
I mean, imagine the millions you guys put into this campaign. Your combined financial power would have been channeled towards your party’s success at the national polls coming this October. I guess your financiers must be disappointed too, although I have no pity for them because they never stood with you for the sake of You, but for their own selfish reasons.
They were just using you to try their luck at blocking SisiBoy from becoming State President. I hear they now have quickly moved from you to their Plan B of funding the opposition in the same hope of accessing our tourism and mineral wealth in return.
Akere gatwe they realise SisiBoy is introducing economic reforms that will leave them in the lurch and keep them at bay from exploiting our resources? They had hoped your victory would deliver them to Kanana, but as soon as they realised that it won’t work with you, they moved on.
They never really loved you MmaV; they never really believed you could make a great President. And the smart woman that you are, I am sure you knew this too – that these guys didn’t really believe in you.
It’s just that you couldn’t show it. You were already too deep into it that you could no longer hit a retreat of thoughts. Otherwise the nation would have laughed at you, wondering what you thought you had in those two gentlemen in the first place.
That’s why you neither thought much about them when you decided to withdraw from the race. Truth be told, your withdrawal was never really about the race being unfair akere MmaV?
You just had to pick that line for political expediency. The truth is, you saw that the people who had motivated your decision to stand for the position of President were no longer there with you.
Clearly they had realised you stood no chance against SisiBoy and they decided to hide from public humiliation. They couldn’t risk their reputation of being master schemers and perennial winners being trampled upon.
Remember the two guys always see themselves as winners – that they have never failed in any of the contests they have engaged in before. I mean, do you really think Kgama would want people to realise that he is human after all? That he can lose a contest?
He had invested too much into your campaign, wanting to prove that he was more powerful and popular than SisiBoy, and when he realised he was going to lose this one, he hit a strategic retreat.
Otherwise he was going to lose the mental warfare, and people who have always seen him as an invincible would finally realise he was in fact a mere mortal like just like you and me. Now I hear he is sponsoring your refusal to extend an olive branch towards SisiBoy.
Again you are allowing yourself to be used MmaV. For how long are you going to allow yourself to be played by these men? Can you imagine a lot of women saw you as an extension of this patriarchy narrative that has divided national opinion?
Women felt you were pushing the agenda of men and that you had no moral ground to disparage other women for not supporting you. And it got worse when those Sunday Standard guys exposed the grander scheme being put together behind your presidential campaign.
That revelation was bound to damage your campaign MmaV; ke gore there was no hiding from what really was going on. That’s why some of the people who had pledged support for you started backtracking.
When Polson, against all expectation, rallied people to support your rival, the writing was on the wall. Your behind-the-scenes schemes were exposed and many of your people did not want to be a part of the scheme.
But of course your guys read the mood and they quickly slid into hibernation, leaving you to bear the brunt of the cold at the High Court and in Kang alone.
I suspect you might have thought you had it all figured out, only to realise later that your backers were just amateurs in the game, perhaps even playing you to meet their own selfish interests. But I have said this to you before MmaV – tswaa fela mo dilong tse and take a well-deserved rest after your illustrious service to this country.
You don’t want to be remembered as a bitter has-been MmaV, not after the colourful career you have had in both government and politics. Perhaps you feel that this country owes you something for your selfless service – and I believe it does – but at the rate you are going, you will end up being seen as nothing but a selfish and insatiable leader who refuses to let go of power.
And questions will be asked gore why o tshaba go tlogela. Kana the others bone we know what they are scared of. They know what they have done and that is why they want someone – a president – they can control so as go tshaba molelo o tlang. And they chose you to do their dirty work.
And you agreed.
Now that things did not go according to plan, they are on another mission and you will be going back to help push their plan? Nnyaa MmaV, tlogela malele a o ikhutse with your dignity still intact.
Remember you are the one who called this whole thing ‘malele.’ Just as you opted to ‘recuse’ yourself from the malele presidential race in Kang, recuse yourself too, from dintwa tsaga SisiBoy le Kgama, and don’t get yourself involved in the reported dirty schemes of foreigners seeking to plunder your country’s economy. You can’t want to be associated with boBrijete who clearly have a questionable agenda with their backing of Kgama. The way they have dedicated and committed their time, energy and resources to backing Kgosikgolo with anything he wants, ba tlaa go golega MmaV. Tswaa mo go bone before it’s too late. There really shouldn’t be much more to say here MmaV – a word to the wise is enough.
Enlightening lessons from losing a loved one
Last week (April 7) marked three months since my brother Moagi Ditlhase passed.I keep writing about my personal journey with loss in my diary and share it with my social media friends #DiaryOfAGrievingSister.
I agree we handle grief different, and with me, writing really helps.The reason I feel it’s so important to touch on this topic, is because grief, at some point or another, greets all of us. Each of us on this beautiful adventure we call life, encounters loss and pain. The kind that leaves you raw and tender for years. But today I want to share what I have learned from my journey. While we are thrust into the grief, the choice to carefully extract from the pain the very lessons we are destined to learn creates the true beauty. A true human experience. I am still learning. I am a work in progress. Here is what grief has taught me.
Life is short regardless of the number of years. And the small things you get so worked up about are really meaningless when you look at the bigger picture. Life can be taken away from you in less than a second and this thought makes you loosen your grip on life and stop wasting so much time trying to control everything or get so disappointed if it doesn’t go your way. Life is impermanent and so is control.
Like the wisest man in the Bible once said – ‘Vanity of vanities, all is vanity.’ You realize the importance of memories. And how we should make as many of them as possible with the people we love. It is the only thing that will be left of them and you will want to celebrate their lives when they are gone. Memories are the only way to bring someone back to life. They will always remain. I look at my brother’s photos with a smile every now and then.
A little compassion goes a long way. Others are hurting all the time. You don’t have to look far to see heartbreak and loss written across someone’s face. I cry during Worship most Sunday mornings at church. I am okay with that. It’s my time to let out the emotion, and thank God for the ability to understand that others are hurting, too.
We are all in this together. Lastly, blessings abound. You just have to open your eyes to them. It’s the much needed breeze on a hot summer day. It’s the smile of a child as they run to the car after school. It’s a friend asking if you are okay today. It’s a friend not asking questions but bringing flowers just when they are needed. Perhaps it’s just knowing that you have love in your life.
Or that you were able to truly help someone in need. Praying for you that your faith shall not fail.
Facebook/Instagram: Yvonne Tshepang Mooka
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