Mmegi Blogs :: A dramatic nation
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Saturday 17 February 2018, 10:00 am.
A dramatic nation

The problem with some people is that when they arenít drunk, theyíre sober. And just when you thought you had seen it all, poof, something else happens in this country!
By Tumie Modise Mon 10 Jul 2017, 16:33 pm (GMT +2)
Mmegi Blogs :: A dramatic nation

! I always say this; that the one thing that sets us apart from other nations is that we are a lively hyper lot. Perhaps it’s too much boredom. So last week, after a short stay in hospital, our second President passed on. A pleasant gentleman by all accounts, our late second President Sir Ketumile Masire was an honourable man and a highly respected and acclaimed African statesman. Books will be written about him in future, his distinguished life and service to this nation will one day be documented for future generations.

His story must be told.  I count myself as fortunate to have grown up in an era of his presidency and even though I quite can’t recall most things (for the most part), like the day when his official aircraft allegedly got shot over Angolan skies, his legacy is not in doubt. Kanye’s most famous export was put to rest a week ago and unfortunately, what should have been a week of dignified mourning period nearly turned into something else. When such things happen, you realise that drama as a subject should’ve been long introduced in our primary school curriculum. There’s too much unearthed talent. 

People demand freedom of speech to make up for the freedom of thought which they avoid. It started with the official notification. I have seen this happen in other countries. In fact, my colleagues at work were genuinely shocked at how ‘low key ‘the whole mourning period was.  In their countries, as one told me, it would have been one hell of a wailing period with folks running up and down the street, tearing their hair off and rolling on the highways until after the day of the burial.

They even told me that professional mourners would have made a fortune that whole week. For some reason, Batswana always remain dignified whether happy or sad. It’s what sets us apart. Well, with the exception of a few of our own. A few hours after the sad news were confirmed, when we were collectively digesting the news, and for most of us, contemplating life without this great human being from then onwards, we were then rudely interrupted by people, a handful of people with seemingly very little attention spans.

You see this select group of people exist all


over, in fact, every single family has at least two of them. Such characters feed off drama and they love action and sensationalism. They hate serenity and peace. The voice of the people has been said to be the voice of God; and, however generally this maxim has been quoted and believed, it is not true to fact. The people are turbulent and changing, they seldom judge or determine right. This became evident when the first blood was drawn over the actual official sad announcement, or rather the ‘late’ announcement as they called it.

The people’s gripe was that unlike the first President’s demise which was allegedly announced ‘timely’, this one was made rather late just before noon. But many of us don’t know what happened in 1980.  After the official ‘late’ announcement was finally made, the next complaint had something to do with the written announcement.  Apparently the people were dissatisfied with what they referred to as the hasty note, even that the word ‘sad duty’ was not even ‘proper English’! Well it is.

Very correct word and very fitting! Just when you thought the grammar gurus were done, it was then decided that an official written statement was not necessary after all, that the state President should have been on national television delivering the sad news himself. Those who were around when Lady Diana tragically died in 1997 will be reminded of Queen Elizabeth’s predicament.  How when she finally gave in to the pressure to go on television she was dismissed as a ‘fake mourner’. No one wants to deliver bad news, because you will be always be remembered as the bearer of devastating news.

The bad news out of the way, next was the funeral programme.   The memorial service venue became a point of contention for many people, never mind that they never had plans to attend in the first place. National stadium, they said! The agreed day of burial was the straw that now broke the camel’s back. What a nightmare, no regard whatsoever for the grieving family. I know I am speaking for many people when I say that I breathed a huge sigh of relief after the burial. A dignified and fitting sendoff it was. Oh well, what would life be like with dramatic people?


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