Gerald Potash

Hello again,

Being a prospective councillor comes with life-threatening stresses. A few months ago a prospective councillor was shot dead in the Northern Province. Now an EFF prospect and an  ANC member standing for office have been shot dead in the last two weeks at or just after political rallies. 

Whereas nobody has yet been arrested for these dastardly crimes, the police are at least questioning two suspects.

Then, possibly to save lives, most of the ANC posters, even in the wards, have Cyril’s smiling photo rather than a picture of the prospective councillor.  This is open season and tension is running high especially in wards where water (let’s not even mention stable electricity supply) is so terribly scarce and proper service delivery is simply a wishful concept and far from any reality in ANC run municipalities.

Service delivery in more than 150 municipalities hardly exists , and in 107 of those, all run by the ANC;  it has almost totally collapsed. Mismanagement has caused these municipalities to become completely dysfunctional. Potholes, pit toilets, filth, irregular electricity and sewerage flowing in the streets has all become a standard in these towns. One of those municipalities is Msunduzi (Pietermaritzburg) where the locals beg for services but the city claims to be bankrupt while sponsoring the local professional football team, Maritzburg United. 

In contrast the DA runs a clean ship, with clean audits and no graft in municipalities that they control, but will that matter to the voters in the rural areas where the municipal index clearly shows the dichotomy that exists between the two main parties? 

If the ANC is voted back into office it will be exactly what the voters deserve. I believe that despite their aggressive campaigning, even now bringing heavy-weights like Thabo Mbeki to canvass for votes, the ANC is in for a pasting.

The rot in the ANC goes all the way to the head. This week we learnt that the Premier of the Eastern Cape has been fingered for “taking” almost a half a million Rand from the kitty of the Winnie Mandela funeral to do up his home. Has he resigned?

 Don’t be silly.

Oh, the house looks very nice now. This is Brandan’s take on standing for council, taken from Tuesday’s Business Day:

Peter Bruce in the Sunday Times makes the point that Cyril is not as politically safe as he was six months ago. The campaigning is rough, money is scarce and promises are empty. And if Cyril is getting big audiences to come to listen to him making hollow promises, probably out of curiosity rather than anything else you should see the crowds that arrive to hear Julius Malema. His promises are even wilder and more extravagant. But he does draw the crowds and that is scary.

At this stage it’s all Father Christmas stuff and doesn’t mean a thing. And how many times must we give the ANC another chance that Cyril keeps asking for?

If you think that Cyril makes empty promises you haven’t obviously heard Julius Malema lately. On the campaign trail this week he told his supporters not to be lazy and to have up to 10 children, just like their grandparents did. He said the State would pay for them and their schooling.  He also told his audience that the Government treats black people like animals. He really goes out of his way to stoke up emotions and plays to the audience.

On the campaign trail these promises are nothing but wishful thinking, but Julius’ audience is gullible and they don’t ask where the money is going to come from to pay for all those promises.

Forecasting results of these elections are tricky but it seems as if the ANC and the DA will shed seats, mainly  to Herman Mashaba’s Action SA  Party (Mashaba is an ex DA Mayor of Jo’burg) and it is also thought that the EFF will be a big winner. Even the largely Afrikaans Party, the Freedom Front Plus is expected to perform well.

Cabinet Ministers get plenty of security. Someone worked  out that we spend R8 million per minister per annum on their security. What does it then mean when at a meeting three ministers get held hostage in a Tswane (Pretoria to you) Hotel by 53 “Military veterans” wanting a meeting for wanting R4.2 million each for 9000 of them.…???

Well, when the Ministers wanted to leave, the meeting having achieved nothing, they were told to stay exactly were they were and their passage out of the hotel’s conference centre was blocked. Eventually three hours later the veterans were arrested and came before court on Tuesday to apply for and receive bail. Because most of them are unemployed the bail was set at a modest R500.00 each.

The veterans “take” is that the Ministers can’t just say the Government is broke so that’s that. They must make an undertaking, and none was forthcoming because the Government is broke.

Remember, this is Africa.

This week Jacob Zuma has been to the casino. He spent five hours there huddled with those near and dear to him like Dudu Myeni (she who singlehandedly killed SAA) and Carl Niehaus (famous for burying his mother who is still alive)—but then he needed insurance money and sympathy. Is it right that someone out of jail on medical parole and looks the picture of health and acts it too simply carries on as if nothing has changed?

Then it’s hard to explain how ridiculous Jacob Zuma’s ranting is. For a man supposedly so ill he came to the mike at Nkandla a day earlier and made an absolute spectacle of himself attacking the judiciary, Ramaphosa and anyone else who would listen to his rambling. He feels that he is above the law and sprouts nothing but rubbish, but that makes news because he was the President of this country for nine years. Also it is what his followers want to hear. Someone should tell him that we are all be equal before the law and having been President does not absolve his criminal misdemeanours. That, however, is something neither he nor his followers accept. 

This week a new head of Prisons has just been announced. This person could quite easily revoke Zuma’s medical parole. That would make him a hero to many of us.

On Tuesday, Ace Magashule was in court with his co-accused, to have his Asbestos trial for corruption, money laundering and theft postponed to November, 3rd.  Like his hero, Accused No 1, Ace uses these opportunities before court to handle the press and in a jovial mood he asked them what he was doing there since he has never done one corrupt thing in his life. He obviously doesn’t know, or want to know,  that assisting corruption is indeed an act of corruption, but hopefully the court will teach him that when this asbestos case 

gets going. 

Our erstwhile Min of Health, Dr Zweli Mkize, is taking the SIU (Special Investigation Unit) on review because he was sacked after the brilliant investigative journalist, Pieter-Louis Myburgh of Daily Maverick exposed him after finding that much of the R150 million paid to Digital Vibes to publicise the Corona Pandemic went to the good Drs’ family ….to buy farms, start beauty parlours and the like. Mkize blames the SIU for instigating his demise in politics. This action by Mkize is dangerous, because Myburgh has now gone into Mkize’s past as an ANC big shot and found a whole lot more that is not kosher in his dealings with the State.

Watch this space.

The fight for the use of Afrikaans as a learning subject at Stellenbosch University continues. The DA is taking the University to court to force it to allow Afrikaans. The DA claims that the Uni is using the Covid pandemic as an excuse to do away with Afrikaans.

But the truth of the matter is that Afrikaans has all but disappeared on campus.

UCT wants all students and staff to be fully vaccinated by Jan, 1.

And children aged 12 and older can now get vaccinated in SA.

Some not so good news is that we can expect the largest petrol hike ever next month. Ouch. This is going to hurt badly.

Some of the usual suspects got together on Tuesday for lunch at a rather unusual venue. When I do my Cape Town tours I seldom, no, I never go to he maximum detention centre known as Pollsmoor Prison, or more correctly, Pollsmoor Correctional Services. Well, Dennis, that character of note had us there for a midday meal and even though the cuisine was not exactly Five-Star the experience was well worth the drive. Ever since Nelson Mandela had served some of his jail time there, it has been quite ‘famous’.

My main impression of Pollsmoor; it is huge! 

Interestingly the staff member who served us was in fact quite a young convict (his boss, the main Honcho in the staff restaurant, was clearly not a convict). And our waiter, a pleasant, talkative chap told us that they sleep 20 in a room.

The coach and Kareen were on the couch to watch the football on Sunday evening. Not a great game but Spurs won and Harry Kane at last scored a Premiership goal this season. And a win is mighty important in this tough league.



Spurs played Newcastle United and last week they became the richest club in the Premiership when they were taken over by the billionaire Saudi Arabian Prince who has promised to transform the club. Well, from this Zapiro cartoon you can see that the very first casualty was their manager who has now been summarily sacked:

As always, love to all,


Email:     Phone: +27 82 557 5775