All I want for Christmas

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WE’RE talking prezzies this week. What got me thinking of gifts was a story in the newspaper this week about the strange assortment of gifts our MPs had to declare to Parliament in what’s called the Register of Members’ Interests.

It all has to do with ethics, something our public representatives conveniently forget at times, especially when the official watchdog has other bones of contention to chew on.

I looked at the list of gifts declared this year and would say it’s very much a case of horses for courses.

How about Fisheries Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersen landing a R800 fish?

State Security boss Siyabonga Cwele has virtually been walking on eggshells since the arrest of his ex-wife on drug charges and should feel quite at home with his new lookalike ostrich egg.

Then there’s Land Reform Minister Gugile Nkwintie, who was in a good mo-o-o-o-d after receiving a couple of heifer cows, and DA parliamentary leader Lindiwe Mazibuko was bouncing with joy at the sight of her kangaroo carving.

The report failed to name the recipients of the staggering number of Johnnie Walker whiskies that arrived at the parliamentary gift desk. All we know is they were mainly from the ranks of public representatives we see dozing off on the back benches.

Which reminds me, Christmas is just round the corner, and I’d better start choosing gifts soon for some of my favourite headline-makers.

I had no trouble choosing something for Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga: a 2011 day-planning diary just so that she’ll realise how pupils feel when they receive their textbooks almost a year late.

What about an inflatable tyre tube for finance chief Pravin Gordhan, so he can keep the economy afloat?

It was also easy with Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula: a Boy Scout manual so he can untangle the knots his tongue gets into every time he opens his mouth.

I also have the perfect gift for that well-known commie capitalist, Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande: a pair of red socks (from Russia with love) would go well with his Gucci lace-ups.

The Christmas gift list seems endless this year: wet wipes for Julius Malema to keep his hands clean; giant tweezers for Public Protector Thuli Madonsela to remove the irritating daggers from her back; and a giant cushion for Kgalema Motlanthe, so he can feel comfortable sitting on the fence.

Last but by no means least, the president himself. Another wife perhaps? A get-out-of-jail-free tape?

On second thoughts, I think I’ll skip him. I’ve already made generous contributions to Nkandla.


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