Thursday, October 08, 2009

The life and good times of an ANC minister

It's whitey's fault you know. We whites took these poor defenceless creatures from their idyllic shit-smeared mud and straw huts and built a 1st world country and then... wait, eyes are welling up *sniff* we fitted it with so many irresistible goodies. Damn it to hell, look how we've corrupted these people.

Erm, the above paragraph is for the benefit of certain revisionist historians who've graced our humble pages recently.

Seriously though, this shit ain't funny no more. This doos, dear readers is responsible for your safety. While half the population lives in shit - literally, the gentries quaff in the public trough like there's no tomorrow. I guess we can look at it three ways. This lot know they have zilch to offer once they leave their political offices so enjoy the gravy express while they can. Or, they know their man is in power so do as they want bugger you and me. Or, by 2014 the ANC could be out of power and such largesse won't be possible. Whatever is going on in their itsy bitsy minds, giving a fu*k is not one of them.

Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa has spent 17 days living in the presidential suite of one of Cape Town's most luxurious hotels, accompanied at various times by five policemen and two departmental officials, racking up a bill for taxpayers of about R235 000.

Mthethwa's stay at the five-star Table Bay Hotel was over a period of weeks during May, June and July this year while his official residence was being renovated.

The total cost of his accommodation - the hotel usually charges R25 000 a night for its presidential suite - was just under R85 000, suggesting a special deal was made. Over the 17 days, Mthethwa's bill for meals came to R5 843 and he spent R630 on drinks. Other costs - including tips, laundry, valet services and phone calls - came to R2 227.

His boss had done everything by the book in buying the vehicles
Deputy Police Minister Fikile Mbalula - whose residence is also still being renovated - spent a single night in the hotel. His spokesman, Paena Galane, said last night Mbalula had moved out of his superior/luxury room because he was uncomfortable about the high cost. His night cost R3 569.

Mthethwa could not be reached for comment on his cellphone last night. His spokesman, Hangwani Mulaudzi, said he had relayed questions from The Star to an official in Mthethwa's office.

Details of the minister's lavish accommodation emerged late yesterday in a written reply to a DA parliamentary question.

It revealed that three constables - presumably responsible for Mthethwa's protection - two police inspectors and two department officials spent between two and 11 nights at the hotel in rooms described as superior/luxury.

"Minister's residence renovations" was the reason given for the stay in each instance. The combined total of nights spent at the hotel came to 66.

Of the three constables, one stayed for 11 days at a cost of R26 000, another constable spent 11 days at a cost of R24 000 and the third spent two nights at R4 700. The two inspectors spent 11 days and seven days respectively at a cost of R24 803 and R29 201, while the two departmental officials spent four nights at a combined cost of R19 000.

The combined total for the rooms, meals, drinks, tips, laundry and valet services, and phone costs came to R234 902.67.

DA shadow police minister Dianne Kohler-Barnard said the minister's stay at the luxurious hotel was a slap in the face for the average South African.

"His decision to do so constitutes an act of complete self-indulgence, at a time when the economy is suffering and the government is trying to cut back on fruitless and wasteful expenditure," she said.

Kohler-Barnard said Mthethwa had not taken heed of President Jacob Zuma's message, contained in his State of the Nation address, to reduce waste and to "cut our cloth according to our size".

Galane said: "He (Mbalula) had a problem being accommodated at that hotel. Ever since that time, he has moved out of any expensive hotel at his own request."

He added that when Mbalula goes to Cape Town next week, he will be booked into a reasonable hotel in the CBD.

Details also emerged yesterday of Mbalula's new official vehicles. He has spent a total of R1,6 million on a BMW 740i and a Mercedes-Benz ML 500 for his Pretoria and Cape Town offices. Mbalula's new cars come with a host of extras valued at R84 000. Galane said his boss had done everything by the book in buying the vehicles. He added that Mbalula would return the vehicles if the cabinet decided he should do so.- IOL

Hat tip: Amelia

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