[imagesource: Twitter / @XhantiPayi]
One rule for our leaders, and another for the citizens of this country.
Last week, the minister in the presidency, Jackson Mthembu, passed away from COVID-19 related complications.
His funeral, which was reported to be limited to 50 people, as per the Disaster Management regulations, took place yesterday at the Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church near his home in Ackerville township in Mpumalanga.
Many of the country’s political bigwigs were in attendance, including President Ramaphosa, who said he was “heartbroken” to hear of Mthembu’s passing.
Also in attendance was Mpumalanga Premier Refilwe Mtsweni-Tsipane, and it’s her behaviour that has many South Africans up in arms.
She was seen arriving at the cemetery for Jackson Mthembu’s burial on Sunday without a mask, despite having been warned to wear one by deputy president David Mabuza:
Here’s that footage, showing her stepping from the stage just after delivering the welcoming remarks:
She is lying she had the mask in her hand, even DD tried to remind her here that she needs to put on her mask. Pap spinning. pic.twitter.com/nrxPk2DAnc
— Isaac Mangena (@Ice_Izo) January 24, 2021
Not that Mtsweni-Tsipane was in the least bit bothered, because she didn’t heed that advice:
This is the funeral of Cde Jackson Mthembu who lost his life to this dreadful virus. He who was at the forefront cajoling and encouraging society to comply with COVID-19 safety measures. Why is the Premier of MPumalanga province not wearing a mask? Where is law enforcement? pic.twitter.com/oGJeADCsNH
— @lupingcayisa (@lupingcayisa) January 24, 2021
Arriving at the funeral of somebody who passed away from COVID-19 complications, sans mask, when so many South Africans haven’t been able to give their loved ones a proper send-off is a proper middle finger.
Her excuse, when the footage began doing the rounds, is also a total farce. Here’s EWN:
According to her, the reason behind this is that, upon arrival at the cemetery and disembarking from her vehicle, her mask was “damaged” and she was “oblivious” to the fact that it had fallen off.
She said she thought that the mask was intact as had been the case throughout the proceedings.
“The Premier’s aides promptly sought a replacement mask which the Premier utilized for the rest of the proceedings, her office said in a statement.
“The Premier has extended an apology to the people of Mpumalanga for that momentary lapse wherein her mask fell without her being aware or conscious of it.”
And if you believe that, you’re probably the type who also believes there’s a Nigerian prince who just needs a little money from you to unlock his massive inheritance.
Multiple photos and videos from the day show Mtsweni-Tsipane maskless, so a momentary aberration doesn’t quite cut it.
Alert level 3 lockdown regulations state that it is mandatory to wear a mask at all times while in public, and failure to do so could result in an arrest or fine imposed on offenders.
Cue the Animal Farm quips, because “all animals are equal, but some are more equal than others”:
A dad ignores the curfew to find milk for his baby- he gets arrested & only THEN does his claim get investigated.
A premier OPENLY ignores the law on wearing a face mask – police ignore her and an “investigation” gets announced.
Some are more equal than others.#AnimalFarm
— Eusebius McKaiser (@Eusebius) January 24, 2021
McKaiser is referencing the man who was arrested for breaking curfew to buy baby formula for his two-day-old child.
This is Refilwe Mtshweni-Tsipane, Premier of Mpumalanga who claims that she wasn’t aware that her mask ‘fell off’.
Bheki Cele was all over the news recently singing praises relating to arrests of people for not wearing masks.
Animal farm le! pic.twitter.com/D1jKJ0of6v
— Tumi Sole (@tumisole) January 24, 2021
Taxpayers are going to foot this bill & it won’t go anywhere.
What other evidence is the Ministry of Police trying to get where there was blatant disregard of the law!
Again, Animal Farm in full swing! https://t.co/Cu1yJyJROD
— Tumi Sole (@tumisole) January 24, 2021
Having taken a break from storming the beaches of the Western Cape, Police Minister General Bheki Cele said he had spoken to the National Police Commissioner General Khehla Sitole “to look into the matter of the Premier and an investigation must be conducted and necessary action must be taken”.
I wouldn’t hold my breath.
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