(Warning: Due to the momentous events of the past week, this post is 80% South African politics. If this is not your thing, eject right before the large warning further down! Maybe next week we’ll be back to our usual programming, all depending on how above-mentioned momentous events play out.)
Between all of the retinal excitement of the (gorgeous) new Justice League trailer and the release of the new Ghost in the Shell movie (pretty but soulless the reviews seem to be saying), you might have missed the new Valerian trailer.
This would be a shame, because it looks mind-expandingly stunning:
On Tuesday, March 28, 2017, when I arrived home and Genetic Offspring Unit #3 (GOU#3 for short) saw me, she all-matter-of-factly stood up and walked towards me.
My heart burst.
One would think that one heart bursting per week is sufficient, but on Friday morning this happened again for unfortunately far less than positive reasons.
We woke up to the news that our president Jacob Zuma had fired 9 ministers shortly before midnight.
Capable ministers, especially so Pravin Gordhan, the minister of finances (who was doing a great job trying to steer our fragile economy in the right direction, often opposing deals that were bad for the economy but great for the pockets of Zuma and his bosses, the Gupta brothers) were replaced with ministers who might indeed be capable, but have clearly been selected not for that but rather for their loyalty to the Zuma network.
Amongst many other ramifications, this also means that the 1 trillion Rand nuclear deal with Russia is officially back on the table!
This was one of the many unhealthy projects blocked by Pravin Gordhan.
Besides crippling our economy and enriching Zuma, his patronage network, and the Gupta brothers (they seem to be pulling many of the strings, including those of Zuma), we really don’t need these power plants.
Our country’s renewable energy programmes will be able to supply all of our energy needs in a cost-effective way for decades to come, without any new nuclear plants in sight, thank you very much.
Nuclear power certainly has its place, but under these circumstances definitely not.
This cabinet reshuffle is the most recent in a long line of increasingly destructive moves by president Zuma and his supporters. The country is still reeling from the billions of Rands that have been and are still being extorted from the poorest of citizens by a foreign company, all right under the nose of minister Bathabile Dlamini.
Guess who did NOT get fired on Friday?
Loyalty seems to be sufficient to cancel out any amount of malice, greed and/or incompetence.
However, people in the know expect serious fireworks the coming weeks.
I am hoping that they are right, and that these will be the right sort of fireworks. With a bit of luck and the willingness of many good-hearted and talented people who have started speaking out and coming into action, our country could soon find itself with the kind of leadership that it desperately needs.
Keep your fingers crossed. I look forward to seeing you on the other side!