Mmegi Blogs :: Botho!
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Tuesday 23 October 2018, 15:21 pm.
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Botho!

There is probably still a great deal that is not generally known about this country’s modern history. So, this week, I am offering this particular photo in part response to Professor Seekings who remarked in a draft paper on drought relief in this country that the 1960s had been neglected by academic researchers.
By Sandy Grant Wed 02 Nov 2016, 16:09 pm (GMT +2)
Mmegi Blogs :: Botho!








Indeed it does seem remarkable that there has been so little interest in van Rensburg’s astonishing efforts in Serowe during that period and to a lesser extent in the achievements in Mochudi.

Professor Seekings, more or less, suggests that drought relief here has always been, without exception, government-run and directed. The exception in Mochudi may have been small scale in terms of the overall national need but in retrospect it was truly heroic.

In mid-1965, it was made publicly known that food aid had been organised by the government and would soon arrive.

It didn’t, being held up by strikes in the US. In Mochudi, a critical situation developed with hundreds of people turning up for the first of the promised food for work projects.

They could not be turned away with useless promises. So the Community Centre stepped in and for perhaps 18 months raised the cash to buy the food that was needed and the materials required for construction projects. When the government finally got itself organised, the District Commissioner asked me to hand over to him the projects that the Centre had organised.

And that was that. Probably, it is now known only by a few older people in Mochudi how the old Community Centre responded so magnificently in a time of great need.

How can anybody know about so many interesting, exciting and important occurrences? Especially if no one asks.

So please do.

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The purpose of this column is to open up topics of general interest for debate.

It makes no academic claims, tries to keep the level accessible to all, does not cite foreign academic publications which are unavailable to most of us, tries to stay with factual accuracy and avoids using repeat material. 

But then Dr Ramsay, on Facebook added a further comment to his response to mine that was published in the Monitor (30th):  ‘I frankly find unfortunate the emerging pattern of denying indigenous achievement and innovation.’

Which was followed by perhaps his own plant,  ‘Sandy is up to great mischief’.

There is of course no such pattern.   How could there be? The real problem may be that Ramsay feels that it is he, not indigenous achievement, that is being denied and that he is insufficiently acknowledged and admired.

Nevertheless, in the context, his one comment, so clearly directed at myself, was dirty, self-degrading, dishonourable, shameless. 

To make such a suggestion is indicative of advanced paranoia. Yes, I had the temerity to ask questions which were deeply resented, about two favoured topics. Normal people welcome the opportunity to share information and ideas. But Ramsay is not normal. 

He is exceptional and different, prickly, intolerant, tetchy. What drives him to denigrate a colleague of sorts, sharing similar interests? If he can do this me, what will he do if you ever dare cross his path?

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