One would have expected a government official being paid around R2 million a year might be expected to know that Geneva is in Switzerland.
The problem with arrogance – which many ANC apparatchiks have in abundance – is that it often makes you speak before you think.
For Minister of Communications, Telecommunications and Postal Services Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams, her belief in her own importance and invincibility (based on the powerful Ministerial Handbook) meant she was more interested in smacking down a TV interviewer’s questions on her European trip than in getting her words right.
Angrily, she said: “I have never been to Switzerland. My husband has never been to Switzerland. We went to Geneva and New York” to do government business … and broke no rules in the process.
Other than geographic rules, of course … because one would have expected a government official being paid around R2 million a year might be expected to know that Geneva is in Switzerland.
Ndabeni-Abrahams later tried to correct her error – which provided days of mirth for social media users – by saying she meant to say France, not Switzerland.
The whole way she dealt with the question, though, echoed the incident last year when she tried to prevent the SABC recording a contentious gathering … as if she owns the public broadcaster.
Once the laughter has subsided, that arrogance still remains. If geography is unimportant to our leaders, what chance do truth and integrity stand?
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