‘Keeping Up with the Cabinet’

2011-11-05 07:25

Following the coincidence this week of the publication of the titillating details of sports minister Fikile Mbalula’s dangerous liaisons with a model, and news that reality TV pin-up Kim Kardashian is filing for divorce – just 10 weeks after a $10 million (about R80 million) wedding, it occurred to me that there’s a new reality TV concept waiting to happen in South Africa: Keeping Up with the Cabinet.

It could be a hybrid of Keeping Up With The Kardashians, Big Brother, Survivor, The X Factor, The Weakest Link, Idols and Top Gear.

The last one is obviously needed in the mix to keep up with the top-of-the-range vehicles the honourable members of the executive cruise around in.

The series would make riveting TV. Like the Kardashians, our ministers live high-flying lives rivalling the Grimaldis of Monaco, they party with the rich and famous and have quite extraordinary sex lives – from jail cells to office desks to lavish hotels and of course, townhouses.

Once you’re in Cabinet, you’re irresistible to members of the opposite sex, apparently. The X Factor part would show the seduction play, how the ministers charm beautiful people into wanting to sleep with them within minutes of meeting.

For ordinary people, this mating game seems truly amazing, as such things only happen when those involved are very drunk or very desperate.

But for our ministers it’s an art form: and they manage to do it all in between “creating a better life for all”, while their bodyguards wait in their cars eating Chicken Licken.

The Survivor part would show how they carry out affairs without getting caught by their spouses. Instead of wearing immunity necklaces, the ministers send their spouses floral bouquets and take them on overseas trips – also called “official travel”.

Getting voted off the island in this case means getting booted out of the official residence and checking into a five-star hotel – and even more debauchery then ensues.

So it’s really more fun than watching people wearing tie-dye eat braaied rats for three months. I’ve thrown in Big Brother so Minister in the Presidency Collins Chabane can finally have something to do.

So when he’s asked whose performance he’s monitoring, he can whip out the (sex) tapes and go “Voila!”If there’s one thing South Africans have never been privy to, it’s what happens in the hallowed chambers of Mahlamba Ndlopfu before a Cabinet reshuffle.

All we hear is reports of people being summoned at all hours; some leave in tears while others hire poet Mzwakhe Mbuli to announce that they have been elevated to high office and need never again drive their own cars or stand in a queue.

For those who do get fired, the new reality show would allow us to watch as President Jacob Zuma waffles on a bit, giggles and then says: “You are the weakest link. Goodbye.”

And finally, Idols. Instead of getting newspapers to rate the performance of ministers, we’d throw it wide open to the public to vote for their favourite member of the executive – yes, fine we can keep Gareth Cliff.

Not Randall Abrahams though, ministers don’t like being told off – Lindiwe Sisulu would probably smack him and Blade Nzimande will call him counter-revolutionary.

The criteria to score the ministers would include Best German Sedan, Most Lavish Hotel Stay, Most Exotic Overseas Travel, Best Looking Mistress, Best Dressed and Most Appearances on SABC TV.

Now who wouldn’t watch that? It would be worth every cent of our TV licences to watch the Kardashian lifestyles we pay for.

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