Mhambi has been redeployed.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Out of our blue heavens - Machine guns

South Africa is wonderfully baffling. Last week Mhambi was listening to the opening of the ANC Polokwane conference on SAFM.

Thabo Mbeki and Jacob Zuma confer at ANC conference in Polokwane, South Africa.
Originally uploaded by Pan-African News Wire File Photos.

After Thabu Mbeki and Jacob Zuma entered the conference, and Zuma-ite delegates were persuaded to stop singing Awuleth’ Umshini Wami, it was announced that it was time for delegates to sing South Africa’s charming schizo National Anthem.

Now Mhambi is not sure whether it was perhaps SAFM’s microphone set-up’s fault, or perhaps the lingering tension of Umshini Wami that went before it.

But the opening strains of the Nkosi Sikilel part of the anthem, was well, strained. Nobody was in the mood to evoke God to save Africa when delegates had just boisterously called for their machine guns.

Slowly delegates gathered themselves and Nkosi picked up a head of steam, from a death march to near death experience she went.

After this tepid performance what would transpire when they reached Die stem, I thought, half expecting the ANC crowd not to even attempt to go into ‘ve^r verlate vlaktes’ in this state.

But out they belted ‘Uit die blou van onse hemel…’ and nope this was no mirage, out came ‘die diepte van ons see’ as well. Full throttle all the way they powered to ‘South Africa our land’.

What’s going on here I thought? Was it because of the Springboks’ proud nation building Nkosi rendition at the Rugby World Cup, which was now being reciprocated?

Was it because the scheming Thabu had sometime ago maligned Die Stem, as he has done with so many other things and people, and now it was time for some of those people to rub his nose in whatever things they could find to rub his nose in?

Soon it was Thabu’s turn to deliver his ANC President’s speech. A dour two hour regurgitation of the successes of his administration, but without mentioning that were in the middle of a global commodity boom, or Aids and the crime pandemic.

When he mentioned the Springboks, Thabu brought the house down for the first and it transpired later, the second last time. The last time was when he stopped his speech. As he sat down Umshini Wami reverberated again.


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