Presidency’s April Fool’s joke doesn’t have everyone laughing

2015-04-01 15:00

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Not everyone saw the funny side of the presidency’s April Fool’s joke, with some saying it was in bad taste.

Presidency spokesperson Mac Maharaj released a statement earlier today announcing three new appointments to the national executive “to further enhance service delivery”.

Essop Pahad, minister in the presidency from 1999 to 2008, was appointed as minister in the presidency responsible for public participation and interface.

Charles Nqakula, former defence minister, would take up the role of minister for roads and traffic affairs.

And ANC national spokesperson Zizi Kodwa was appointed deputy minister for social cohesion and nation building, the statement said.

“The president wishes the new members all the best in their new portfolios,” the statement went on to say.

The portfolios are, of course, fictitious.

However, several news organisations fell for the joke, even calling it “breaking news”.

Some journalists pointed out that it was in bad taste, especially in the wake of the death of Public Service and Administration Minister Collins Chabane, which created a vacancy.

The presidency was also criticised for releasing the joke late as the pranking is supposed to end at noon.

Pahad confirmed that it was an April Fool’s joke.

“It’s the 1st of April today. It’s April Fool’s day and I am very pleased to see that Mac Maharaj still has a great sense of humour,” he was quoted as saying by News24. The presidency’s website was down at the time of publication.


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