Warning: it’s a ‘hard hat area’



IF anyone thought Scrutator was simply malicious, take a good look at the Voiceless this week.

To their credit, the scribes at that wannabe tabloid have exhibited some conscience of some sort.

Just a week after I exposed their shameless story-thieving, they tried to be original this time round.

The results are there for all to see — like the behind of a goat.

But it’s been disastrous.

“I know you are starting to ask yourself why I have been focusing on leaders off late. I have a goal but unfortunately its fruits will not be reaped anytime soon. Remember Lesotho is a democratic country just like The united states of America and many other democratic countries. I have this week went all out to Europe with a view of calibrating the essence of leadership. A sample of Edward Kennedy, Hillary Clinton and the president of US Barrack Obama. You will tell me which three I should sample in Lesotho so that a comparative analysis can be made. But let us beware that we are not comparing countries but leadership qualities which can be replicated for a good course here in Lesotho.”

Meleko, indeed!

Apologies to Theko Tlebere for quoting his piece verbatim.

Please note this includes all the lower-case initial caps in the quotation above except the italics.

Is there any need to lecture Journalism 101 here?

No, I’m tired — those boys took my breath away.

The only consolation is that the boys have stopped the business of hacking stories from other writers and passing them off as their own work.

But now readers have to be very careful because there will be a hailstorm of extremely bad copy and mutilated English.

They must put a “hard hat area” or “radioactive zone” sign on their front page.

They need “language therapy” — including the pamphlet’s self-styled English teacher who does not know basic punctuation which she attempted to lecture last week.

By the way, the paper’s other writers should study the English lectures dished out by my sister, no matter how amateurish the lessons are.

They will probably learn that writing with a dictionary by their side to fish big words to try and “scare” the likes of Scrutator is not being sophisticated.

Newspapers are meant to communicate.

So there is no need whatsoever to churn out encrypted copy and not “explicating” things for us to understand.

In other words, failure to explain oneself can be termed incompetence.



Publishers who employ pretenders as senior journalists must not be shocked when they get mediocre news coverage.

A certain weekly has learnt this lesson the hard way.

One fellow has been masquerading for a long time but last week he just could not simulate anymore — he decided to come out of the closet.

Or was he exposed?

The tabloid dismally failed to write probably the most important story since the one in April about those uninitiated bandits who tried to stage a coup.

By the way that same scribe bungled the coup story and ended up with egg on his face.

But this time round they were saved by a story from the international news agency Agence France-Presse.

Why a whole paper resorted to the wires for a story that happened right under their noses boggles the mind.

Remember they are a stone’s throw from the hotel where Masire delivered his report.

Where was the ageing greenhorn when Masire came to town to throw in the towel on the talks over the seats?

This is just beyond the pale.

But Scrutator understands the challenges.

If you stumble into a job you will fumble all the way until you are caught out.

People must learn to accept that some jobs are beyond them.

Imagine one of those sisters sworn to celibacy clamouring for a job as a call girl.

Or a bicycle mechanic fighting for a job to repair planes.

In this business of news coverage it’s either you can do the job or you can’t.

At this rate, it appears the journalism initiate might remain a rookie no matter how many years he will spend in a newsroom.

It’s worse when the novice abandons cadetship midway to flee mounting debts.



Still on the issue of pretenders, who at that paper is insisting on doing those kindergarten drawings on the editorial page?

I last saw such drawings at crèche.

What is clear is that whoever is doing those drawings must either grow up fast or better still learn the real purpose of a cartoon in a newspaper.

A newspaper cartoon must employ humour, irony and satire.

It’s a satiric comment about issues, especially current ones.

Cartoonists are normally highly intelligent people.

They are sophisticated commentators but the only difference is that they do it through cartoons.

You can’t just pick up any boy from the street and call them a cartoonist.

And while the neophyte was sleeping on the job, the author of that misnamed column was busying himself with some monkey business.

The poodle was pooping all over.

He was attacking a paper from the same stable.

Are the boys not supposed to be helping each other come up with readable newspapers?

Talk about washing dirty linen in public!

But who is Scrutator to worry about a fight between equally ugly siblings?


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