The situation in other continents may be different but I know for certain that dictators in
One time lay Pastor Jacob Juma has joined the fray. With some 20 children credited to the equipment he calls his machine gun (thereby exposing the people to mockery) he has now returned to his priestly roots and shown his contempt for the people he rules over. Last February, he warned people at an ANC rally that if they vote for the ANC ”you are choosing to go to heaven. When you don’t vote for the ANC, you should know’ that you are choosing that man who carries a fork … who cooks people.” Vote for me and go to heaven is a political sale or an election slogan as ridiculous as any since everyone knows that at the end of the day people will return inevitable to their hell of a life. The aides of Juma tried to calm the hue and cry surrounding his declaration but pastor Juma did not relent: “When you are carrying an ANC membership card, you are blessed. When you get up there, there are different cards used, but when you have an ANC card, you will be let through to go to heaven.” Admittedly no dead ANC member has come back to confirm Jumas declaration but the whole idea of a party card opening the gates of heaven does show Juma considering his people as unintelligent dupes and, in addition, raises very many interesting questions. What if?
Africans are used to disrespect. The Westerners who back African dictators who have no respect for the rule of law show their naked contempt for the people. They are declaring in effect that the people do not deserve any betterMobutu was good and Kabila is fine for the Congolese, Meles is ok for Ethiopians, Nguema is God sent for Equatorial Guineans. And on and on, throughout history. The disrespect goes on to whiten democracy itselfthe often repeated declaration being you are not yet developed enough for Western democracy! The prescription for Africans is at best a benevolent despot, take it or leave it. When people refuse and in their turn they disrespect the tyrants, or in other words stop fearing them, the Revolution happens. Ask Mubarak, Ben Ali or Assad and Saleh. After all this and more is said can we consider the notion of a funny disrespect? Does it exist? ANC members getting buried with their ANC membership card (how is it going to be preserved?) and showing the same to the angels for admission to heaven is funny enough. Opposition parties do not only suffer hell on earth but also up there in Gods domain. With such threats who is the devout Christian who would opt to join an opposition party to go straight to that ugly fellow with a horrible tail who carries a fork and cooks and eats people? Better to vote for a donkey and stay with the ruling party to assure a place in heaven. On another level, lay Pastor Juma is taking himself as a Moses or an Isaiah bringing the wrath of God on all those who may disrespect him by doubting his words though no one has yet called him baldy to his face.
The idea of joining a ruling political party to go to heaven makes priests and churches quite irrelevant. I am sure some would exult and say about time! No wonder the South African church hierarchy is livid. In
Back in the days of the one party rule, a party membership card could get you ration cards and some perks that were in reality crumbs. The same was the case in the new millennium until President Juma came to the rescue. No benefit beats heaven even if the allure of the place would be reduced by the alleged preponderant presence of those whom we called dictators here on earth. Jacob Juma is encouragingly continuing the frank speak of the late Tubman of
Jumas vote for the ANC and go to heaven call has introduced new factors into the complicated reality of African politics. If voting for the ANC assures automatic entry into heaven does this mean Jumas party is Gods favorite? Has God started to take political stands? Where does all this leave the parties of God (Hizballah and others)? Are African opposition Satanists just because they bedevil the ruling parties? Africans hardly need new and difficult questionslife is already too burdensome as it is. And to come back to the main issue: is this total disrespect for our intelligence as African citizens funny? When they tell us vote for us and you shall go heaven and expect us to believe it are we expected to smile or to scream in anger? Juma has disrespected the wise people of