He said, “Izohlangana phandle!” He responded, “Mayihlangane ngoku!” I understood quite little of what was being said at this particular moment but the expression issued a hint and the timing of the word, “ngoku” cleared any doubt. After school is after school! I was a giddy teenager all over again, held hostage by the final bell of the day that would free us students from the clutches of the prison like setting parents sent us to, while at work because they didn’t want us to finish the groceries and run amok. Suddenly the Rural and Development budget debate resembled that long and tedious last class of the day, a double at that, while the mind wondered to the imagined scenes of fist knuckling, hair pulling and grappling that is set to take place. Ayeye!
The past few days with the Economic Freedom Fighters, have resembled that renowned school felon who mastered the art of sticking it to the principal, while collecting an audience to revel in his petulance as though they were witnessing some kind of genius. We’ve all encountered such a fellow or even lass. Theirs is the name most recycled over the intercom, they have turned detention into their version of aftercare and bare an aura which tends to imitate, ‘cool’. They chat back in class, their entourage make the perfect hype men, as they reaffirm the chosen path as the correct one. Petulance is the weapon of choice for this pupil and is often used in their bid to fight what they believe to be their rights, regardless the cost such a disruption causes the other pupils. It all started with a red overall.
Those in red like to be seen as championing the cause of the poor. So they get this point across by a form of a gumboot, an overall and depending on your level of kinkiness, there are apron’s too. They closely resemble the pupil that got to school a day after corporal punishment was banned. This all after feeding the neighbourhood dog his homework in a bid to test the resolve of the teachers and principals who could no longer use the multi-purpose features of a ruler on a student’s hand. Amidst much fanfare the EFF and their members got sworn in and this being the first day of school, they were given a bit of a hall pass, along with a book of policies regarding rules and regulations. This was in no doubt to ensure future compliance. The thing about the school felon is that they relish a challenge and will take up any cause that pits them against authority. This proved to be true of the lads in red.
There was once a time that boys plaiting their hair was frowned upon at schools, regardless of how cool American rappers had managed to pass this off as. It simply was not allowed. This soon became the cause that school felons took to in a bid to shake the house of authority. Boys not only plaited their hair, some wore prettier zigzags on their heads than girls. These were worn with school blazers and ties to assembly and had we been stuck in a ninety’s time warp, would be the current staple of many public schools. This is not to say that those in red will have parly riddled in onesies, although stranger things have happened. Similarly the EFF have with this current Joan Rivers like stance to their chosen attire (we would be wise to note that Wellingtons have since made a comeback), found their first cause.
They organised a march to the Gauteng Legislature in a bid for their cause. Reports have them attempting to pry a door open, looting not only from the catered food for those not locked out of assembly, but from hawkers too. They were also accused of assaulting members of the South African Police Service. The SAPS themselves were accused of firing live ammunition, using brute force as well as teargas, and we wonder why the Police Commissioners’ hairline is in a state of emergency? The Gauteng Legislature has laid charges against the EFF; reports have it that they have a strong claim regarding the catering.
The Economic Freedom Fighters playlist regarding parliament and parliamentary matters, reminds one of a song by some British fellow. If memory serves his name might have been Craig David. The song was titled, ‘Walking Away’ and the current stance of the EFF resembles the music video for that song. It surely has to be a favourite as the budget debate had them waltzing out again. The flirting between the EFF’s Mngxitama and the Freedom Front Plus’ Groenewald has proven to be just a side show, of the inevitable re-enactment of the Craig David music video. Buti Manamela and Mandla Mandela got in on the act and seemed to set up an interesting finale, a show stopper! The EFF however chose to do what they have done since the swearing in of ministers, I do wonder if Mr. David receives any royalties for the movement he has sparked…