COPE leader Mosiuoa Lekota. Picture: SOWETAN
COPE leader Mosiuoa Lekota. Picture: SOWETAN

THE member (of the Upper Jukskei Flyfishing Collective) is moved to declare that in this instance and this instance alone, he stands with Mosiuoa (Terror) Lekota, the leader of that vaguely Charterist party the Congress of the People (COPE), for walking out of President Jacob Zuma’s state of the nation speech last week.

Technically, Lekota’s heroic stand against a hostile house was not much different from the Economic Freedom Fighters’s (EFF’s) mindless Gangnam-style exit in that it was out of order, but at least Lekota tried to make his point cogently. What Lekota said was that Zuma had broken his oath of office and that he was no longer honourable. "We can’t listen to someone who has broken his oath. He is no longer fit to lead our people," Lekota said.

And what Lekota demonstrated was that he and the rest of the nation have lost the ability to communicate any point to the African National Congress (ANC) and to Zuma in an orderly and civilised manner.

If the speaker, Baleka Mbete, had charge of her emotions, Lekota might have had his say and sat down and kept quiet for the duration. If self-inflicted shame and disgrace had not angered the ANC so, the government might have shut its mouth so that its ears might open.

It means that even if form dictated her conduct, Mbete was wrong to have shown Lekota the door. If there remained in her and in any other member of that house a shred of integrity they would have risen and walked out the moment Zuma opened his mouth.

That goes for all our representatives, regardless of party membership, but especially the so-called opposition. Now is the time for MPs to get their snouts out of the trough, for they sup with the Devil.

As it happened, COPE and the EFF were the lucky ones having missed the speech. At least the member, who followed the circus on TV with perverse fatalism, could at least booze recklessly or switch channels to watch Syria burn.

Nothing but drivel emitted from the presidential pie-hole.

The stalwarts and toadies took the brunt of the banalities, especially those who felt compelled to applaud as though the volume of their clap would determine the luck of their number in Zuma’s bizarre game of fafi.

We all knew the speech would be SA’s version of Groundhog Day, and equally predictably, commentators implored us to discover the true state of the nation in what Zuma did not say in his state of the nation address. He did not, for instance, attach a sum, not even a thumb-sucked amount, to the supposed saving to be made by chopping the government’s post-budget party bills, or cutting Cape Town out of parliamentary largesse, or what, even vaguely, the presidential vision for a turnaround might be.

Most glaring in its omission, though, was any evidence of the presumably earnest talk a group of CEOs had with Zuma just days before his speech. Zuma’s gormless reference to a global economy that might exist beyond SA’s borders means our captains of industry have thrown away what may have been their last opportunity to knock sense into the presidential noggin.

Zuma’s mention of the idea of trying to resuscitate the rotting corpse of a one-stop shop/Invest SA initiative that would signal SA was "truly open for business" without having first announced the liberalisation of the country’s state-owned enterprises, meant our CEOs were as recalcitrant to the exigencies of the country’s imploding economy as Zuma and the ANC.

Thus, at the 11th hour, SA’s Horatius on the bridge may turn out to have been the cofounder and leader of a party with a parliamentary contingent of three. Viva Terror.