Election Experts

It seems that South Africa is full of political experts. Who knew?
What a country, though. Who could forget when it was full of microbiologists and vaccinologists not so long ago? And then, just after that, specialists on the history and geopolitical situation in the ex-Soviet Republics and then the same for the Middle East.

That’s the sort of pivoting and agility management that you only find in this remarkable population.

Who knows to what we will turn our collective hands tomorrow?

Right now, it’s spin doctoring of the highest order:


Explaining why this party’s 0.3% is actually a better result than that party’s 22.3%.
How that party winning this area doesn’t actually count for anything, because [stereotypical voter demographic] was always going to vote that way.
Calling for the head of a party they don’t even care about, while studiously ignoring the fact that they outperformed everyone’s wildest predictions.
Just making everyone aware that it’s someone else’s fault that the 68% of the population that support your single policy party’s single policy mysteriously morphed into 0.21% on election day.

Still, all this mental manoeuvering does at least distract us from the rather unpleasant thought of an ANC coalition with the EFF (ANC-lite) or MK (ANC-heavy), running what’s left of the country (into the ground).

And it’s also not leaving much space for wondering where local political phoenix has-been Patricia de Lille is going to emerge this time around. But then again, who cares?

Last ditch

If the whole “Tax cuts for pensioners” and “Bring back National Service” policies suggested by outgoing UK PM Rishi Sunak were (rightly) ridiculed as being pre-election desperation tactics, then what on earth are we to make of this?

At least Sunak’s promises were a month and bit away, even if they were clearly the last ditch attempts of a dying government to try and win a few more votes. This one above was announced literally 3½ hours before election day.

Next level stuff.

That’s the 4th major bill Ramaphosa has signed into law in the last 2 weeks. And while I’m not saying that those bills are necessarily good or bad (OK, I’m saying that the NHI bill is an absolute disaster, but still), it’s pretty sickening that after 30 years in power – 6 of them with him in the Big Chair – we’re suddenly seeing actual work being done, simply because the ANC is about to lose their overall majority, and – linked, but also not the same – they ANC is desperate for votes.

If these things were so right (not the NHI bill) and will be so beneficial for the country (again… not so much the NHI one), then why weren’t they signed into law weeks, months or even years ago?

It almost makes you think that the ruling party is simply desperate for voters to see them actually doing some actual work.

Weird.

Tomorrow?

I mean, everyone is expecting it. And the jokes are flowing freely on the socials:

But Eskom are fighting back – with facts (allegedly).

Tuesday, 28 May 2024: Eskom has noted with concern the fake news trending on social media regarding loadshedding resuming on 30 May 2024. Loadshedding has been suspended for 62 consecutive days and continues to be suspended.

The previous Power Alert issued by Eskom was on 24 May 2024, where Eskom announced the continued suspension of loadshedding.

Our generation availability continues to perform well as a result of the Generation Recovery Plan that commenced in March 2023, as well as our intensive planned maintenance. Unplanned outages are averaging at 12 500MW, below what was anticipated for our winter outlook.The energy availability factor (EAF) of four of our power stations is performing above 70%. Our year-to-date EAF is improving gradually and is currently at 60.73%.


Eskom will provide regular updates and the next update will be on Friday, 31 May 2024.

Ah. So Friday, then.

Outside

I might not be in Mauritius, but I can’t really complain about the autumnal weather in Cape Town right now. Sure, it’s looking a bit iffy towards the end of the week, but in typical Cape Town autumn style, it’s hot in the sun, cold in the shade and (since I’m kind of between the two) actually very pleasant here right now. Apparently, it’s raining in Mauritius.

Yep. The nice weather here means that I’m taking the opportunity to sit outside and write this blog post before I get on with parental duties this afternoon. And it’s worth noting that I was absolved of those this lunchtime as the Boy Wonder drove himself and his sister home from school.

I’ve still got my noise-cancelling earbuds in because there’s a lot of local building and leaf-blower action again today. And I am wondering what those building and leaf-blowing individuals have in store for tomorrow, which is – lest we forget – a public holiday.

Wednesday, 29 May 2024 marks the country’s seventh democratic election. To ensure that South Africans have sufficient time to make their way to the polls to have their vote counted, President Cyril Ramaphosa has declared a special public holiday.

Government calls all eligible voters especially young people to go out in numbers to vote on that day, as the active participation of all eligible voters is central to strengthening our democracy. Your vote gives you the power to change or improve things and allows you to choose who will represent the interests of your community. 

Yeah, I mean that second paragraph was obviously written whilst wearing rose-tinted spectacles. Because whoever you vote for, the government always gets in.

Anyway, I plan not to get up too early, so I’m hoping that they will all be taking a well-deserved day off.

Which they should be doing:

The Regulations issued in terms of section 17 (1) of the National Building Regulations and Building Standards Act 103 of 1977, prohibit the use of machinery, engines, apparatus, tools or contrivance which may cause a disturbance to the neighbourhood –

  • on a public holiday or Sunday;
  • before 06:00 or after 17:00 on any Saturday; and
  • before 06:00 or after 18:00 on any day other than those days above.

These are strict timelines which can be enforced by engaging the relevant law enforcement authorities.

I’m not planning on making a fuss, but I would appreciate them not making a noise either.

Let’s do each other a favour.