Political Appointment in many African countries is a deeply and systemically corrupt system.

If the system (process) is corrupt; then it’s defective. A defective system will, unsurprisingly, produce defective output. It doesn’t matter whether or not, the input was not defective; the process is defective enough to affect a normal input into it to produce a defective output.

The political appointment process in many African countries is deeply and systemically corrupt. It’s a defective system, therefore, producing defective political outcomes. Whether or not, the input is normal, is of no consequence because the process is already defective enough to produce a defective output. Thus, political appointments in many African countries are made in an already structurally corrupt socio-political system (process).

Political appointments in many African countries are rarely about – or based on – merit. Merit is optional. The idea that the individual is appointed on the basis that they meet all the necessary requirements for the position and, therefore, the ability to do and deliver on the job to which they’re appointed, is secondly to the group criterion. In many African countries, political appointments are heavily based on the group criterion, i.e, belonging to and coming from the same group. What makes a group is also as important as who is accepted in and, hence, belongs to the group.

This is an important element in (political) societies with multiple social divisions such as clans, tribes, and ethnicities and a whole slew of other social demarcations and identities. Political power in many African societies is based and wielded on and decided by these criteria. So, it’s not uncommon to have political party membership based on any one or a combination of these criteria. For instance, it’s not uncommon to have a political party started primarily based on any one of these criteria; as such, a political party whose membership is dominated by people from the same clan, tribe or ethnicity wielding clan, tribal and/or ethnic power.

This means that political appointments in such societies are – and will be – made based on and following these criteria, hence, to the exclusion of those who don’t meet such criteria. Those who don’t belong to and come from the group in and with power, and therefore controlling the process and doing the appointment to political and/or so-called government positions – generally doing the allocation and distribution of socioeconomic and political privileges.

This also explains the mindset of “it’s our turn to eat” by those in politics and their cronies in such political arrangements that it is fit to call (and describe) it as a “political mindset” that perpetuates the politics of exclusion based on such criteria, hence, for instance, tribal politics.

Political appointments in many African countries are rarely made in the interest of the public; but, and largely, in the interest of the political party in power. This is primarily because public participation in effective politics is a farce. Politics and the entire political process is controlled and run by those in power. The political apparatus, therefore, is run primarily in the interest of and to serve the political party in power and the leader. Public service is treated as a secondary concern.

People are appointed primarily and mainly from the same political party in power and on the basis of political party allegiance and allegiance to the appointing authority – usually the president or head of government who is also, in many cases, the head (leader) of the party; which in most cases is run like a personal organisaiton. If a political party in power is run like a personal organisation of the party leader; who is also the president or head of government, effectively with the power to appoint people to positions of power; appointing people of ‘substance’, i.e, on merit; is not as important as appointing people who are subservient.

This is primarily because, if the leader of the party in power – who is also the president or head of government – is concerned with and motivated by preserving and staying in power; and if the preservation of power depends on; (a) the party leader’s control of and over the party; and; (b) the loyalty of the party (members); then it’s important for the leader to surround himself/herself with subservient people. People who will be subservient not only to the leader’s commands; but also the leader’s every whims and fancies without question. Or indeed, with people whose ability to raise critical questions to the leader’s commands have long been impaired.

Even when and where political representation, so-called ‘political inclusion’, is raised and becomes a political issue, potentially threatening the status-quo and the leader’s power hold; it’s usually addressed by looking for politically weak individuals. Individuals who are easily corrupted with power and privileges to fall in line, i.e, in the prevailing order, without threatening the power order; but giving the necessary impression of political inclusion.

This largely explains why in some African countries, especially those where the political party in and with power has a monopoly on power; and as such, has been in power for long, once individuals are placed in positions; they stay in the same positions (posts) for 10, 15, 20 years and more. Because they’re not a threat to the leader’s power but instead serving their subservient role well; to keep and maintain the status-quo.

It is also important to note that in such political environments; the appointment system is used to discriminate and oppress, and to distribute privileges, rewards for obedience and punish disobedience to the party and its ideology, and the party leader, who has the power to appoint and therefore controls the appointment system.

Narrative (N1) and Power (P1): Narrative (N1)+Power (P1) = (N1P1).

In the world of power; narrative is (a source of) power. It, thus, reasons that the power to create, define, direct, control and own narrative is an important element of power and acquisition and protection of power in the world of power. Because the power to create, control and own narrative in the world of power, is and means the power to create power reality, i.e, manufactured and therefore artificial reality, enhanced and maintained cosmetically by power and its privileges.

Power reality and reality are often diametrically opposed; but one must prevail over and dominate the other. Too often, however (if not always and guaranteed), in the world of power; power reality prevails over and dominates reality. In the world of power, the inability to create, control and own narrative; means the inability to create, define, direct, control and own reality.

The inability to create, control and own reality; means the inability to create, direct, control and own perception. Subsequently, the inability to create, control and own narrative, therefore, means the loss of power to create, direct and control perception. Correspondingly, the loss of power to create and control perception; means the inability to control the mind.

In the world of power; the power to control the mind, is the ultimate power. It’s the apotheosis of power in the pecking order of all and whatever forms – and the exercise – of power. It’s the best form of power because of its power, i.e, it has the power, to manipulate the mind into thinking it has power and that whatever it does; it does so out of its own volition. The mind couldn’t be more wrong!

The mind doesn’t know and/or realise (and hasn’t got the slightest clue) that it’s, in fact, being remote controlled. So, the power to create, control and own narrative gives the power to create and control reality. The power to create and control reality, therefore, gives the power to create and control perception; which gives the power to control the mind.

The power to create and control perception and therefore the mind; allows the ability and makes it possible to control the mind remotely. It creates remote power; and remote power has and allows the ability to transfer responsibility of the consequences of power to the mind itself. Although it doesn’t know it’s manipulated remotely; therefore, removing culpability from and exculpating the remote power controller.

The world is controlled and dominated through the power to control the (human) mind. The human mind is controlled through the creation and manipulation of perception. Perception is created, controlled and manipulated by and through the creation of narrative. In the world of power, therefore, the power to create, control and own narrative; is the battle for the control and manipulation of the mind and ultimately, for remote power.

In the world of political power; true power lies in the ability and power to control and manipulate the mind by creating and controlling (mass) perception. This is why, therefore, the power to create, control and own narrative is a battleground for political power. Because political power without the power to create, control and own narrative means the inability to create and control perception.

The inability to create and control perception means the loss of power to control and manipulate the mind. Power, especially political power in the world of politics, without the ability and power to control and manipulate the human mind; is hence no more than castrated power, i.e, power without (in it) power.

Africa Day ought to be renamed Africa Sadness Day

The joke is on again; but such a sad and sick joke. What a sad day that’s Africa Day!

Africa Day should be a day of mourning for Africa; for the continued destruction of the African mind by way of falsification through a colonial education that’s at the heart of everything wrong with Africa’s politics that affects Africa’s development and African life in general.

The mind is the greatest resource for any society. Falsify the mind; and change society. A society whose mind has been falsified through a foreign social, economic value and belief system is no longer the same society; even in its outlook. Most importantly, it’s no longer the same in its aspirations and source of inspirations because these are influenced by and therefore a consequence of the (state of the) mind.

But both aspirations and inspirations are crucial to and form the basis for – and are at the centre of – socio-economic and other (kinds of) development in any society. The state of the African mind is influenced and affected by Africa’s toxic colonial education.

The education of the coloniser – the oppressor; cannot and is not designed nor is it intended to educate the colonised and oppressed into freedom: mental freedom. Or to train and equip the mind of the colonised and oppressed with the capacity to challenge the colonial and oppressive system. Africa must fix its education; it must completely divorce from its colonial pedagogy that trains ‘would-be‘ African ‘leaders‘, among other things, to frame their development aspirations from a colonial perspective while seeking inspiration from their coloniser and oppressor.

Africa Day is such a sad and sick joke! It mocks African life and lives instead of mourning for the continued destruction of African life and Africa.

Some fifty-eight (58) years after the founding of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU) on this day, 25th May 1963; Africa is (still) in a mess, socio-economically and politically, with endless (proxy) conflicts (for Africa’s resources) ravaging the continent and destroying many lives; from north, central to south.

The OAU had been co-opted by neo-colonial influence and interests leveraging on the greed of the African political elite long before its fate was sealed when it was hijacked and transmogrified into the current vampire the AU. Many Africans believe, rightly, that the AU does not exist to cater to and serve African interests; and neither does it substantially address Africa’s critical and urgent socio-economic and political challenges.

Ostensibly the AU is African, but many Africans are deeply sceptical – almost persuaded beyond any doubt- that the AU is only African in name; but a foreign agency headed by Africans who, many Africans with an African consciousness, regard and fittingly describe as “House Negroes”.

Africa Day must be renamed Africa Sadness Day!

Mphakhwe Chiefdom and the Chief: twists, turns and tales of life of chief dog in the Chiefdom.

In the Mphakhwe Chiefdom, the Chief’s dog is chief dog; and tradition is that when a Chief’s dog is cast adrift by the Chief; it’s no longer chief dog. It’s a dog that once belonged to the Chief, once had the status of a chief dog; but now banished from the Chiefdom by the Chief. The Mphakhwe Chief is reputedly helpful and generous to his dogs as he is customarily merciless to banished dogs. Banished dogs can growl for the Chief’s merciful attention as they want; but the Chief has a notorious, albeit, admirable reputation for not reversing his decisions.

This is largely because, so informs the tales of what happens inside the Mphakhwe Chiefdom, before the Mphakhwe Chief decides to banish his dogs from the Chiefdom; the dogs are repeatedly warned – sometimes mercilessly whipped – to keep steady in line and ungrudgingly loyal to the Chief, the Chiefdom and its demands and tradition. The dogs in the Chiefdom must be loyal to the extent that, if the Chief so decides, for his own personal entertainment (pleasure), to drive a pike up any dog’s bottom; that the dog must take it up with unshaken calm and without complaint.

However, the world is organised in a strange way such that nothing in it, and certainly in life, is ever that certain as to be so accurately predictable. The Mphakhwe Chiefdom is conscious of that; and as such, the Chief makes exceptional allowances to the Chiefdom’s tradition on decisions. It’s the Chief’s exclusive prerogative; but at a cost on the Chief’s chiefly reputation and – by extension – the Chiefdom’s pride and carefully crafted and cultivated reputation.

The Mphakhwe Chief is also aware of the danger posed by stray dogs. The Chief, in his chiefly wisdom and experience, is well aware and knows that banished dogs from the Chiefdom can easily become dangerous stray dogs. Banished dogs from the Chiefdom, if and once turned stray dogs, pose great danger to the Chiefdom. The Mphakhwe Chief, in his chiefly wisdom and experience, knows and fully understands the energy and resources needed and expended to fight stray dogs.

Applying Cost-Benefit Analysis, the Mphakhwe Chief, concludes that;

(1) the cost of reneging on his decision is far less than the cost – energy and resources – expended to fight dogs banished from the Chiefdom and turned stray dogs;

(2) the benefits are greater than sticking to his decision.

Consequently, it’s not uncommon – and therefore not surprising – when the Mphakhwe Chief reverses his chiefly decisions and allows once banished dogs from the Chiefdom, back to the Chiefdom but certainly and strictly not back as chief dogs. They’re simply dogs in the Chiefdom although without the official Chiefdom title of ‘chief dog‘. Chief dog is a special designation, once lost; it’s never gained because it’s the (the expression of the) Mphakhwe Chief’s confidence in the chief dog. But once that confidence is lost, irrespective of why and/or how, the chief dog automatically loses the Chiefdom title and all the entitlement of ‘chief dog‘. The Mphakhwe Chief takes ‘chief‘ away from the dog; and the dog is simply the Chiefdom’s dog.

The Mphakhwe Chief uses his confidence in chief dogs as a currency; the value of which, is predicated on – and derives from – the fact that it is and must be granted only once. When the Mphakhwe Chief loses confidence in a chief dog; it may result in the chief dog being banished from the Chiefdom; mainly to safeguard the value of his currency, that is, confidence in chief dogs.

But if the Mphakhwe Chief reneges on his decision and allows a once banished dog from the Chiefdom, back to the Chiefdom; it’s not that the Chief has regained lost confidence in that dog. It’s that the Mphakhwe Chief, in his chiefly wisdom and experience, has – applying Cost-Benefit Analysis; and considering that the cost of reneging on his decision is far less than the cost, that is, energy and resources expended on fighting dogs banished from the Chiefdom and turned (into) stray dogs – concluded that; (1) it’s better to have and keep that (previously banished) dog in the Chiefdom than risk to have it turn into a stray dog; and (2) the dog will be running the Chief’s ad hoc errands in the Chiefdom, sometimes outside the Chiefdom.

Independence, a goatherder and a shepherd

A goatherder and a shepherd do not and cannot have the same experience for the obvious reason that both herd quite different animals with different temperament. A goat is not a sheep, nor is a sheep a goat. A goat is a goat. A sheep is a sheep. A sheep shall be a sheep and treated as sheep until it is proven, in legalese speak, beyond reasonable doubt that it has, with the generous help of time and a touch of nature’s magic or man’s ability to play the creator with genetic modification, eventually become a goat. However, for that to stand a chance of happening, time (alone) would neither be enough nor the solution. But it’s an essential part of both the process and the solution. It would be an essential input in the process of finding a solution – the output: sheep turned into a goat.

A goatherder and a shepherd, however, have something vital in common: they both have herding experience. They both, like any herder, have tales to relate to, tales to recount; but not the same tales. Although, admittedly, the tales of both a goatherder and a shepherd might be similar because the subject: herding experience – is the same. And the objects of the tales: goat and sheep, are quite different; hence, the likely acute variance in experience between a goatherder and a shepherd.

Goats and sheep have characteristic differences; and this is an important factor in the way they are both herded and therefore a defining factor in the experience between a goatherder and a shepherd.

Goats and sheep have rather different flocking behaviour. Goats are rather more independent in their behaviour and movement. But over all, such independence is dependent on the will and not to forget or naively undermine the whims of their herder; the degree to which the herder will allow them to independently roam around and graze. That, in itself, is dependent on other factors, such as the size of the herding area and, importantly, the independence of the[ir] herder from external forces and/or influence; which is unlikely given the inevitable interdependence necessary in the realm of the universe.

So, while goats are naturally independent (minded) creatures; their independence is dependent on, rather heavily, and consequently curtailed by the independence of their herder: the degree to which the herder is dependent on or independent from external forces and/or influence. Even if goats are allowed by their herder to roam and graze freely in the[ir] designated grazing area, free from the[ir] herder’s watchful eye; it would be spurious for the goats to claim to be independent from their herder’s reach and control. Their independence is to the extent, the herder defines and permits them.

Goats, as naturally independent creatures they are; can be as independent as they want, however, and for as long as it’s within the parameters of independence as defined and permitted by the goatherder. Goats, with their independent nature, have no agency over their independence in their designated grazing area. The same is true of and applies to sheep, with only one exception that the sheep characteristically move in flock and hardly move independent from each other’s movement. This is the genius of the sheep. Although they’re falsely but widely characterised as “dumb” creatures, they’re not. Far from it, they’re intelligent creatures, conscious of their weaknesses/vulnerability and environment. They move in flock to protect themselves from danger.

In a narrow sense, the independence of goats and sheep is dependent on the independence, will and whims of both the goatherder and the shepherd. In a broader view, their independence is not independent from the limited or lack of independence of both the goatherder and the shepherd, and the necessary interdependencies in the universe. While goats, out of naivety, can boast to sheep about their independence to move separate from each other – not in flock as sheep do; their independence is as restricted as that of the sheep by the goatherder whose own independence is not as the animals might admiringly and naively imagine it is.

Both the goatherder and shepherd are as independent in their role and their environment as, and to the extent their environment is interested in their animals. That is, to the extent goats and sheep are of value to the goatherder’s and shepherd’s environment. And to the extent that environment is influenced and/or controlled by external interests and forces.

To the extent, and for as long as, goat meat and goat cheese taste different from sheep meat (mutton) and sheep cheese; and to the extent, and for as long as they attract a craving from (the) insatiable external taste buds; the independence of both the goatherder and the shepherd and their animals will depend on their ability to supply and maintain a steady supply of goat meat, goat cheese, sheep meat and sheep cheese irrespective of the pack of fierce dogs each has to protect their animals. Whether the dogs bite or simply bark, is of no consequence to the craving of external taste buds. The external craving and taste buds are not bothered by the fierce growls of the dogs surrounding the herds.

The independence of the goatherder and the shepherd, therefore is intricately entwined with the ability of the goats and sheep to serve and maintain a steady supply of their products to external demand. Goats and sheep, therefore, owe their independence or lack of it, to the craving and demands of external taste buds for their products.

However, the independence of goats and sheep, is made more precarious when the goatherder and shepherd develop the same external craving and taste buds. The hapless animals face a vicious double prong attack: domestic demand and the avarious external demand.

The mouth, for instance, cannot, in its wildest dreams, claim to be independent from the demands of the stomach. Nor can the extreme end of the alimentary canal claim to be independent from the mischief of an avaricious mouth.

A fish that manages to secure its independence from a shark’s reach but finds itself in a fisher’s net, even if the fisher decides to spare it from his plate and keep it safe within his reach; the fish cannot, in all its foolishness, claim to be independent of the fisher’s taste buds. If it does, it’s indeed a rare kind of optimistic fish. Its “fishness” must be closely examined.

Fundamentally, there’s more need for the goatherders and the shepherds and certainly the fisher, to question the narrative of independence than there’s need to celebrate, for example, the dangerously misleading illusion of independence of sheep from the unrevealed intention of the shepherd.

If Africa is the goat, the sheep; who is the goatherder, who is the shepherd?