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My fellow South Africans: We take a peek inside a high-level Cabinet meeting

An unheard of insight into the workings of the very best level of electricity in South Africa and an education for all citizens.

This week, in what we are hoping will become an ongoing series, DM168 is capable of present a transcript of the most recent Cabinet meeting, taken from a leaked telephone recording.

We agree with it indicates an remarkable insight into the workings of the highest stage of electricity in South Africa and may be instructional for all residents.

Present are President Cyril Ramaphosa, Minister inside the Presidency Mondli Gungubele, Minister of Communications Khumbudzo Ntshavheni and Minister of Lack of Energy Gwede Mantashe.

Cyril Ramaphosa (CR): Gosh, wherein is everybody?

Mondli Gungubele (MG): Ah, we've numerous apologies, Mr President. Most ministers are obtainable at the ground – well, in a helicopter, perhaps, or one of those awesome SUVs mandated within the Ministerial Handbook for paintings with the grassroots…

CR: I recognize. Well, we ought to get on with what we have, sorry, who we have.

MG: If I may also, Mr President, before we begin, the ministers simply desired to congratulate you on your ultra-modern “My fellow South Africans” speech. Truly masterful. We think it’s the exceptional to date. Really. And the rankings were thru the roof, Mr President. Facebook is all applause.

CR: Thank you. Point to keep in mind: when you’ve were given a representative of the West to rail in opposition to, that’s always accurate.

[Muttering down the other end of the table]

CR: Sorry? What does Uncle Gwede say?

MG: He says “I advised you so”.

CR: Right, sure, thank you Uncle. And we presume the West does not consist of Russia or Turkey?


CR: Thought so. Just a touch reminder: america paid for our first tranche of vaccines… Oh, and in which is Minister Phaahla?

MG: [Consults notepad, phone, iPad] He’s out spreading goodwill. I imply, he’s encouraging people to get vaccinated.

CR: Ah. Where is he, in reality?

MG: He’s in Pretoria, I believe.

CR: But we’re in Pretoria proper now.

MG: Yes, well, he had some Afrikaner Christians to steer. It appears it was an Afrikaner Christian who incubated a new stress, Omi – Omigod – Omicron, is it? Yes… He says he may fit to Krugersdorp later today.

CR: Right, properly, the outreach need to keep. We don’t want all the Afrikaner Christians to be wiped out by means of a brand new variant, will we?

[Laughter all round]

CR: And in which is Ms Ndabeni-Abrahams?

MG: Er… [looks at some papers, then at phone] She despatched a message... She has gone to have a pedicure. At a small business, of course. She’s selling small commercial enterprise, as in line with her portfolio. In fact, she recommends that all of us move and get a pedicure at a small business.

CR: Lovely. But I even have an in-house pedicurist. Paid for by using Shanduka, I might add, now not from the public purse.

[Muttering at other end of table]

CR: Sorry, what became that?


CR: What is a pedicure? Can someone please give an explanation for to Uncle Gwede? No, it’s no longer a part of your portfolio, Uncle…

Gwede Mantashe (GM): Harrumph, huff, huff.

CR: No, you don’t have to pass. And, sure, we’ll come back to you, Uncle. Now, Minister Ntshavheni, I agree with we've got a little situation at the SABC?

Khumbudzo Ntshavheni (KN): Er, yes, Cyril, I mean Mr President. But not anything to worry about. Internal issues. Disciplinary listening to.

CR: Did I read that this had something to do with that SABC interview that didn’t appear while I become campaigning in Limpopo?

KN: Well, there can be a link… Definitely not anything to do with interference from the board.

CR: No? Was there interference from the board?

KN: We’re studying that. But we’re now not pronouncing whatever. We don’t want to look Stalinist. Or anything just like the previous management. Or the one earlier than that. May I remind Mr President that certainly one of my middle names is Silence?

CR: Yes, so it is. I don't forget now. I’ve concept it turned into one of your best traits. Well completed, Khumbudzo. Where is Minister of Taxis Ses’Fikile Mbalula?

MG: I agree with he’s dozing it off – the hangover from the local government elections, that is. He’s slumbering it off in his capability as ANC elections boss. Not as Minister of Taxis.

CR: Right. Good to peer some separation of celebration and country. I fully advise Minister Ses’Fikile’s role. His supine role, this is. We will go back to the problem of taxis inside the new year. Let’s hope they don’t kill too many people over the festive season.

MG: Minister Cele additionally sends his apologies, and I’m certain he’d echo what you stated approximately the taxis, however as regards the police pressure.

CR: You imply that they don’t kill too many human beings over the festive season?

MG: Well, I wouldn’t want to position words in his mouth.

CR: Quite. Not that you can. You can’t even placed words in his brain.

MG: Yes, sir.

CR: Make a be aware, although – need to chat to Minister Cele approximately the insurrection in July. I’m not certain we’ve arrested sufficient humans. Or the proper human beings.

MG: Noted.

CR: Now, Uncle Gwede, if we will simply turn to you for a second… There’s this trouble approximately Shell blasting up the Wild Coast? Seismic survey, I trust it’s referred to as. Anything you may do about the public outcry?

GM: Mutter, mutter, huff…

CR: What does Uncle say?

MG: Something approximately coal, miners, fossil fuels and “We will never give up”.

CR: Yes, nicely. I just have to tell you, Uncle Gwede, that those ladies in Sea Point with whom I even have a bit jog every so often are very disillusioned that your Shell human beings are going to be deafening the whales and so on.

GM: Gurgle, harrumph.

CR: Yes, I recognise you don’t care about the Sea Point girls. Unless they emerge as coal miners. Or maybe if they become Turkish? Ha, ha, a bit comic story, Uncle… Don’t be indignant. One ought to preserve one’s feel of humour while one is in politics, no? I find it so critical. That’s why I supply Trevor Noah a call every few weeks. Just to have a presidential chortle.

GM: Huff, gurgle, harrumph…

MG: He asks who Noah is, and are you saying there’s a flood at the manner?

CR: Ha, ha, you do have a sense of humour, Uncle. Cute. Yes, properly, there can be floods on the way, specifically now that monsoon season has hit South Africa, but you’d have to check on that with the Minister of the Environment. By the way, in which is Minister Creecy?

MG: [checks phone, iPad, etc] She’s hunkered down with some attorneys, Mr President. They’re checking the environmental impact surveys on this Shell component. Making positive all the i’s are dotted and the t’s crossed, or possibly it’s the alternative way around. Before we get sued by means of a few ecoterrorists.

CR: Good. Due diligence need to be achieved, even if it’s after the fact. Oh, and Uncle Gwede, simply to remind you, if you hadn’t perhaps stuck up with this – Shell is a Dutch and British enterprise. So they represent the West. No troubles with the West while it’s represented by means of Shell?

GM: Harrumph.

CR: Ah, yes, nicely, we can be assisting you in this, Uncle. You can move in advance with the seismic survey, whales and dolphins however. Plankton, even. I’d often facet with the Sea Point ladies, however I were informed that the ANC has a stake in this Shell factor and, properly, I’m hoping there’s some income there. I can’t for my part bail out the ANC every six months because Ace left us inside the pink when he went on go away.

GM: Huff, wuff. Gurgle.

CR: I’ll take that as a “Thank you, Mr President”. It’s a pride, Uncle. But there’s a quid pro quo, I’m afraid. In go back, are you able to deliver just a little bit of aid to Eskom’s green transition? Just a tiny, teeny bit? Maybe reduce the independent strength manufacturers a few slack?

It is the future, you recognize. Remember while we used to have a destiny? It became so best. It’d be great to have a future again. And keeping your coal mines going for any other one hundred years, nicely – you do know approximately climate change? I wanted to check that with you.

GM: Huff, harrumph.

MG: Yes, he says he has heard of the climate.

CR: Wonderful. Thanks for that, Uncle. Well, each person, I do trust that’s a wrap. Hopefully, our ministers will return to paintings within the new yr. Thanks, anybody. I’m off for a pedicure. DM168

Shaun de Waal is a writer and editor.

Please word, this column uses satire.

This tale first regarded in our weekly Daily Maverick 168 newspaper which is to be had for R25 at Pick n Pay, Exclusive Books and airport bookstores. For your nearest stockist, please click on here.

My fellow South Africans: We take a peek inside a high-level Cabinet meeting (

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