The dignity of the state capture commission has been held up by Zondo's personal approach. Even the most reluctant witness could not gather the rudeness to withdraw.
Mostly sunny. Cool.
30 sheep were found in a taxi in Aliwal North on Friday. (SAPS)
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Maybe it's an odd week. An outlier. But judging by the news of the week, it seems South Africans have finally lost the plot, writes Howard Feldman.
I am genuinely afraid that South Africans have finally lost the plot.
Whether it is the economic stress of the last few years, the constant reminder
of our lost potential, or the taunting laugh and bizarre throat cleating of former
president Jacob Zuma, it is not unrealistic to contemplate that our sanity
might fast become a thing of the past. Like e-tolls. Or load shedding. Or
Consider the following three reported stories. All appeared on News24
and all popped onto my feed in the matter of a few hours. I didn't seek them
out, they found me, as it were.
It begins in the Eastern Cape where five people were arrested for
transporting 30 stolen sheep in a taxi. In a taxi. True story. This happened at
the end of last week and it appears as though there might be a syndicate
operating in Aliwal North (of all places). It is unclear if the description of
syndicate refers to the taxi or the sheep stealing, but the fact that 30 sheep
(adult ones, otherwise they would be lambs) were being transported by taxi is
bizarre in and of itself. It gives a whole new meaning to travelling "cattle
Photographic evidence made it clear that the sheep were travelling
without seatbelts and that whereas some of the livestock were fortunate enough
to find chairs, others were forced into other areas where the emergency exits
were blocked. Safety was clearly no one's first concern.
What the five perpetrators could have been thinking is beyond me. It was
further noted that this is not purely an Eastern Cape thing and that the same
sheep transporters might be operating in the Free State as well.
of the Free State, according to News24, a bloke from that region on holiday in
KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) apparently lost a dare, or something. And so, as one does, he
drove what appeared to be a green City Golf (with him inside it) into the sea. It
was a sight to behold and it was unclear if the car was fuelled by 95 unleaded
or he was fuelled by 42% proof.
Shelley Beach Ski-Boat Club secretary Brenda Johnson, who
was at work, had the following to say: "Somebody came running into my
office and said there is a car in the bay. When I went to look, the car was
floating and the man was standing there giving people the thumbs up, indicating
he was not injured or in distress."
the only things that go into the ocean here are boats. To see a car go in, and
to see it done deliberately, was strange. It was not very clever."
man was apparently rescued by all sorts of people and has now returned to the
Free State (presumably) to prevent his sheep from taking any strange modes of public
Still in KZN, News24 is currently reporting on yet
some more odd behaviour. According to the
publication, "Two unknown suspects went off the rails on Friday night and
stole an empty passenger train before driving it from eMkhomazi to
Umgababa in KwaZulu-Natal – a distance of 12km. Passenger Rail Agency Agency of
SA (Prasa) spokesperson Zama Nomnganga confirmed the incident to News24, saying
that Prasa's security officials were investigating the incident."
"The train was taken by unauthorised
persons. They are not employees of Prasa."
Nomnganga said he was surprised when he
learnt of this because operating a train is a specialised procedure. They took a train for a joy ride.
The sad part about the story is that it might have
been the only local train to have arrived anywhere on schedule. No train was
torched in the process.
It can't be normal. News24 is not the type of
publication that peddles the fantastical. But if there is news, they report it.
Maybe it's an odd week. An outlier. Perhaps in a week
when a cold front has enveloped the country, Boris Johnson was appointed
British Prime Minister, and the Public Protector was more or less called a liar
by the highest court in the land, anything can happen. But I do worry that the
stress and anxiety of being South African in the current environment is robbing
us of any sanity and perspective that we might have clung to.
To some extent all South Africans are like that green
Golf driver. We have all driven in too far and need to be rescued. On the face
of it we are calm and able to climb onto the roof and wait for help to arrive.
But that doesn't mean that we aren't surrounded by a raging ocean that
threatens to overwhelm us at any time.
- Howard Feldman is a keynote speaker and analyst. He is the author of three books and is the morning talk show host on ChaiFM.
Disclaimer: News24 encourages freedom of speech and the expression of diverse views. The views of columnists published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24.
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