South Africa has just held its fifth successful general election, lauded for the most part by observers, local and international. One would think therefore, that our country would enjoy continued, significant nation status in the eyes of the world.
Indeed, DIRCO and The Presidency announced that close to 40 heads of state would be attending the Emperor of Nkandla's enthroning. Whoops, did I just say that?
Be that as it may, we have seen the police stationed along the highways, we have heard that Pretoria will be locked down on Saturday, and we have read the bizarre instruction that fuel companies will not be allowed to have trucks on the road at all on Saturday. One has to wonder - is there an unleaded threat against Shower Head, or are they scared Robert Mugabe might try to hitch up a tanker to the Air Zim plane when he goes home?
Today, Minister Chabane released the list of foreign dignitaries who will be in attendance. In addition to the aforementioned Mad Bob, the list of heads of state reads like the "forthcoming attractions" roll at the International Criminal Court. A veritable Tyranny of Dictators. Without exception, all of them from Africa.
Anybody from our friends in BRICS? Sure, the departing Indian Prime Minister, a Vice President from Russia, and some mid-level ministers. From western Europe, the Americas, or Oceania? Nil. Well, certainly nothing above ambassador level. God knows, if I was the US ambassador, I'd rather spend my morning playing with my pet rock collection, and instead send the receptionist.
As much as the ANC believes we have a good story to tell, and as much as we (as a country) have received congratulations on achieving 20 years without a significant genocide, the world is not stupid. The west is observing a nation sliding into the abyss, and is expressing disapproval. How long before the Fat Zulu starts ranting and raving about that madman Cameron and that evil imperialist Obama, an oratory popularised by the Butcher of Borrowdale?
I fear that unless something happens in the next five years to stem the haemorrhaging, our next inauguration will rank right up there with North Korea, Myanmar and Turkmenistan.