For once, political debates took a back seat for United Democratic Movement leader Bantu Holomisa as he teed off while standing in for President Cyril Ramaphosa during yesterday’s Nelson Mandela Foundation’s Afropolitan Invitational Golf Day in honour of Madiba at Steyn City golf estate.
Against the background of lush lawns and the sounds of birds and waterfalls at the state-of-the-art golf estate, Holomisa, who played with Judges Willie Seriti and Jerry Shongwe and businessperson Zukile Nomvete, was concentrating so hard he only chuckled or waved to onlookers after executing a good drive.
For the two Supreme Court of Appeal judges, it was a break from legal matters, with cellphones switched off during the entire 18 holes that was punctuated with laughter, jokes about “who is the best” and quips of “looking good” or “unlucky”.
Holomisa said Ramaphosa had requested that he represent him because the president was attending the KwaZulu-Natal ANC elective conference. “I said to the president ‘thank you for the honour’ and I do hope that this time there will be no coup with me in charge.”
When a ball he hit strayed to the left, Holomisa shook his head and joked: “Politics of the left.”
Of the event, he said: “This is a continuation of Madiba’s celebration. We are fresh from great and inspiring speeches made by former US president Barack Obama and other leaders, reviving Mandela’s legacy.
“In celebrating Madiba’s life, I am happy that we have been reminded about what he stood for.
“In playing golf in his honour, we are still chatting about his legacy.
“The melody continues.”
The annual event to raise funds for the Nelson Mandela Foundation was sponsored by Kaya FM, Tsogo Sun, Johnnie Walker, Nescafe Gold, Steyn City and Pro Shop.