Mmegi Blogs :: Of media, opposition party unity and the honesty
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Friday 15 December 2017, 17:56 pm.
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Of media, opposition party unity and the honesty

In the play, A man of all seasons by Robert Bolt, (King) Henry (VIII), who is agitating for divorce with his wife Catherine, to marry Anne Bolyne, pleads with his Chancellor, Sir Thomas More for his support.
By Michael Dingake Tue 19 Sep 2017, 16:12 pm (GMT +2)
Mmegi Blogs :: Of media, opposition party unity and the honesty








The King’s divorce is controversial, some of his subjects are against it, and he needs maximum support from his nation, in particular his intimate officers; he specifically solicits support from his Chancellor. When the Chancellor wants to know why he insists on his personal support when he enjoys overwhelming support from his people, the King replies:

“Because you are honest. What’s more to the purpose, you are known to be honest…… There are those like Norfolk who follow me because I wear the crown, and there are those like Master Cromwell who follow me because they are jackals with sharp teeth and I am their lion, and there is a mass that follows anything that moves --- and there is you.” Honest, Thomas More replies: “I am sick to think how much I must displease, Your Grace.’’ Throughout man’s political history, the four levels of support, leadership enjoys, are constant: The honest, the loyal, the tenderpreneurs and the blind followers who follow anybody who moves, whether King, President, Kgosi, mayor or VDC chairperson. Inwardly, the leaders know which type of supporter would be good for them -  the honest – but for self-interest, they  are more comfortable with those supporters who are ready to flatter them. The sycophants (malope) are the praise singers, theirs is to Yes-Sir or Yes-Ma’am, the leader everytime the leader opens his/her mouth to speak; tenderpreneurs have a solid motive to please the leader, he/she is the number one patron in their business interests; then there’s the majority who don’t know why they exist;  the type whose favourite interjection when another or others beg to know why things happen as they do, will object that one is talking politics. You know the type: O bua politiki (You’re talking politics)! The honest are very few; the sycophants are there; the loyalists benefit from the leadership and have strong objective to ensure the survival of a happy leadership;  the masses don’t know the differences between  leaders. A leader, whether dictator, autocrat, or clown is leader to be followed to the grave.  After years of one-party rule, opposition party unity, has become the guiding star for removal of the underperforming Domkrag.

The opposition is too fragmented to defeat Domkrag, is the chant heard. It’s the refrain of the private media, it’s the hymn of the political fence-sitters, it’s the tune piped by casual political observers. Nobody can gainsay the apparent concern expressed by the cacophony of voices singing lustily for unity, to vanquish the Domkrag. I also agree that unity of the opposition may be part elixir to cure our political malady.  But unlike many, I don’t think opposition unity is the one and only strategy to

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dispose of the Domkrag millstone, around our necks. I am of the opinion that crucial as opposition parties unity is, there are other remedies besides the unity factor. For starters the unity concept is fraught with many glaring obstacles that make it largely elusive. From the very first attempt to forge a united front of opposition parties the strategy hasn’t been the success anticipated.

The argument isn’t a rejection of the strategy per se, but from an experience of decades not only here but in other countries, it may be exaggerated. The strategy ought to supplement other methods seldom tried when they should be placed in the forefront and tested. Unity of the opposition is made hard by the very chemistry of the nature of human society as we have come to know it. What we have alluded to determined by our personalities as outlined at the beginning of the article. The honest, the instinctive praise singer, the business-minded persona, the general mob victim reared on some  dependency syndrome. These characters seldom come together to forge a common attitude towards challenges. Isn’t it time for Batswana to add other strategies to the unity strategy? An obvious neglected strategy is to apply concerted pressure on the ruling party to stop it playing the democratic by undemocratic and fraudulent methods? Domkrag should be relentlessly and systematically exposed for denying opposition parties public funding, monopolising the public media, using state resources to campaign and win; generally by deliberately keeping the political playground unlevel. Domkrag’s international friends should perpetually be used as pressure points to expose and embarrass, the big mouths, lying about being  ‘the shining example of democracy.’ Combining the methods would facilitate the capitulation of the cheats to the narrow and straight path!

The opposition parties should be businesslike and expose the Domkrag’s shortcoming in providing public services. At the same time the opposition could spell alternative policies that resonate with the public interest! Finally, we need to mention the unprofessional conduct by some media practitioners; news is sucked from thumbs, rumour is published as authentic news, fake news is reported unapologetically as news! Remember the story that the President of the BCP and his wife were business partners with the BDP big guns? Even after correction by the defamed couple, the thumb-suckers  refused to publish the truth. There was also the lie that ‘BCP pulled out of the UDC coalition talks,when the truth was that the talks had collapsed, and a communiqué issued by all the parties. Nix; the private media kept the lid on facts to ‘punish’ the BCP for sins it never committed. That’s how some journalists contribute to the unity of the opposition!

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And that comrades is the BMD strategy. Any questions Media! Where the hell are they
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