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They reap where they did not sow



Ntate nthute ke tšoane le oena, loosely translated as Dad teach and mentor me so that when I grow up I will be like you. These are the words said by aspirant youngsters while observing their mentors displaying the craftsmanship in their respective industries. I remember those good old days when I was growing up in the dusty village of Ha Maama. Those days when after returning from school the grandma in the village would keep asking me what I wanted to be when I grow up. Those days, any grown up person in the village would out of the blue and for no transgression call you in for some five or six lashes just to remind you how the societal hierarchical structure was like and you would not even think of complaining. In those days, young men and women dreamt of enlisting in the police service and army, being pilots or teachers, nurses or doctors. For some reason or another, the dreams that the ordinary folk had in those days seem to have evaporated. The amount of corruption we are seeing recently is a modern day Ntate nthute ke tšoane le oena where our leaders in all their forms seem to have forgotten the notion that motho o tla phela ka mofufutso oa phatla ea hae (Man shall reap the fruits of their toil). Today many seem to reap fruits where they have never sown at all. Those high in this Kingdom’s echelons have in one way or another, as individuals or in concert have found the means of identifying our weakness as a nation and the many flaws in our policies and procedures to advance their wealth accumulation agenda. Since the advent of the new found political diversity, Lesotho has never been the same in terms of high levels of corruption and looting. Not a week passes without a scandal of some sort being published in our newspapers. The benefactors of these scandalous deeds no longer see the need to hide the fruits of the deeds. While the ordinary and honest Mosotho and many expatriates drive around in discarded oriental imported vehicles and struggle to find decent accommodation, these pseudo mentors drive around in the latest models and live in palaces of their own. If one were to trace the true nature of their wealth, one would find that it is indeed the very reason why we have the kind of roads and lack of basic essentials in this country. The effect of the rampant looting, and we know who these people are has been that even the honest civil servant has adopted the greed tendencies and will do anything in their power to get as close as possible to those who process the various tenders in Government. It is a fact that in Lesotho the business of tenders has turned many a dumbass Jimmy comes to town into the man about town that Joe has become. Before the Bra Joe status, many of these Jimmys could only boast of drinking Hansa or Castle Lite in the bundus, never missing a political rally to be seen by some lame politician who desperately needed someone to chaperon multitudes of voters in their respective constituency. When the job has been done and a tender or two have been awarded in their favour, the Jimmys have indeed come to be the Bra Joes known everywhere cooler boxes and braai stands are assembled. Of late they have come to know the difference between blended and single malt whisky. They actually loot for a living, depriving the ordinary, honest and needy citizen of their fundamental rights. They have indeed learned the art of looting the state and leaving it bone dry from their political idols who are adept at even stealing constituency votes all in the name of floor crossing in Parliament. So whenever you see some wannabe Joe flashing a bottle of whiskey, yes whiskey with an ‘e’ for real whisky does not have an ‘e’ in it know that the source of their new found lifestyle is as a result of Ntate nthute ke tsoane le uena, and it does not take a rocket scientist to know what the ntate has taught the new Joe….until we meet again, enjoy the fruits of no one’s toil as you mingle with the new Joes. Mokhosi Mohapi

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