If ‘Zeelah’ was paying me the big bucks

2014-01-27 15:11

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Saturday morning. I’m sweating like a white journalist minutes before the DA’s candidate list is about to be announced.

A horrible thought hits me. I am white. I am a journalist. Even if only during working hours. It is minutes before the DA’s candidate list is about to be announced.

My sweat’s got nothing to do with the DA. I’m not a list kinda guy. I did my newsroom activism in the 1980s. I’m soaked because Durban’s insanely hot and society demands that I wear clothes.

The only time the DA ever made me sweat was when Zeelah – as she is called by the Commander-In-Chief’s neighbours – got bounced from Nxamalala. On my day off. Forgiven but not forgotten.

Zeelah’s (Zille) about to name the DA’s candidates for the elections. The folks they want the punters to vote for. Represent them in Parliament. The National Council of Provinces. The provincial legislatures. Well, almost. She’s naming them all. Goody.

Except for the Confidential Candidates, that is. I’ve heard of presidential candidates. Compromise candidates. Premier candidates. Even Manchurian Candidates. Never Confidential Candidates. The DA, it seems, has candidates they can’t name. Because they’re confidential. At the press conference to announce the names of its representatives.

That’s a very nice move. A real winner. Worthy of a self-anointed government-in-waiting. Call a briefing to announce your party list but hold back some of the names. Trust us and all that. We want to take over the country but we’ll tell you who we are later. Promise.

That’s a move so screwed up it could have been thought up by Mac Mirage himself. Zeelah needs to ask her spin team for her money back.

DA leader Helen Zille announces her candidates for the 2014 general elections. Picture: Bram Lammers

All the would-be candidates applied for their jobs. They weren’t nominated from the floor at a branch meeting in a church hall somewhere. The confidential ones filled in forms. They sat through interviews. They even had their pictures taken in case they came right. Most would also, I assume, have told their wives. Boyfriends. Mothers. Cats. Even their employers. In some cases.

If Zeelah was paying me the big bucks she’d have named the whole lot on Saturday morning. Stolen the moral high ground from the ANC on the eve of their list conference in Irene. Which she had every opportunity to do.

Then again, if Zeelah was paying my whiskey and marijuana bills she wouldn’t be getting people wound up for Shell House2.0. And she wouldn’t have got me out of bed that Sunday morning for a jog around Nxamalala.

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