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South Africa — A land of the brave

The United States calls itself the land of the brave and in so many ways it is but in southern Africa we have a country that has given the word brave a new meaning.

By Grace Mutandwa

That country is not Zimbabwe – believing that refined fuel comes out of a rock or being the first country to come up with a whole ministry that nobody understands (Ministry of Psychomotor Activities!) is not brave, it is simply tragically hilarious. We do have a penchant for coming up with the most ridiculous ideas, but in South Africa we have the new “brave”.

South Africa’s Makhosini Nkosi, when not running his communications company or helping his prominent clients spin their way out of treacherous waters, runs what he calls “an adult lodge”. Put simply, he runs a brothel that masquerades as a massage parlour.

But you have got to hand it to Nkosi; he is not like some of our politicians here who try to wriggle their way out of their sins by lying or claiming that their enemies are trying to destroy them. In an interview with the Sunday Times, although he would not call his lodge a brothel, he admitted that his clients came in for massages that had happy endings! Well, a brother has got to make a living and if pimping is the way to go, so be it.

At least Nkosi has an innovative way of creating wealth. He is however, not as brave as his country’s Northern Cape premier Sylvia Lucas. According to the Sunday Times, in her first 10 weeks in office she blew R53 159 just on fast food. You have got to admire the woman’s constitution. It is brave to chomp through so much fast food and not care about your health.

Although she can walk into a whole storeroom stocked with water and cool drinks, this brave woman chose to use her official credit card to purchase water, drinks and fast foods on her road trips on official business. In just one month her fast food shopping spree cost R26 565.

Most women love shopping, but their major shopping is usually tastefully restricted to designer clothes, handbags, shoes or jewellery.

Unlike Nkosi who admits to running an “adult lodge”, Lucas blames all the credit card purchases of fast food and drinks on someone else down the official food chain. She is brave enough to mow down heaps of fast food but is unwilling to take the responsibility that comes with her position.

Some of our southern neighbours might be preoccupied with feeding the needs of their flesh in various forms but there is a group of people in South Africa determined to carry through some of the biblical teachings.

Some churches representing 10 million South Africans have vowed to fight the state, which is hell bent on banning spanking in schools. This is not the interesting bit. What is, is the fact that according to the Sunday Times, the Joshua Generation Church in Cape Town actually has a manual that advises the dispensing of pain as an effective parenting tool.

Those who believe in the adage, “spare the rod and spoil the child” will love this manual. This brave group of people in all their wisdom sat down to come up with a manual that teaches parents how to spank their children and the type of rod or switch to use and how it should be applied and where and what rod should be used for which ages. They left nothing to chance — size of the rod is also important!

South Africa is truly a land of brave and entertaining people. When half the world is not praying for that great icon, the man of peace, Nelson Mandela, some members of his family are busy besmirching his reputation by their greedy vile ways.

And just when you think the trade unions boss Zwelinzima Vavi is truly sorry for his lecherous ways, he fights back, supported by a group of supporters who see nothing wrong in the fact that he had an affair with a co-worker and should not even have waited to be suspended but just resigned.

We have lived for decades among people without a conscience, so it is not surprising that Vavi actually thinks some people want to destroy him. He did the crime, he should do the time and move on, but again, that would be asking for too much.

The reality is that South Africa is actually a land of the brave. They might not like what their independent media reports but they are allowed to publish and given access to public information and where this information is withheld; their journalists dig in with the safe knowledge that they will not disappear or be thrown in prison. All these nuggets were reported by the Sunday Times, and every week you get even more riveting stuff coming out of South Africa.

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