A nation of lambs

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I was completely thunder-struck as I was walking down my neighbourhood alley when my attention was suddenly diverted to a young girl who was whole-heartedly singing the national anthem of Mzansi (South Africa).
I was mostly shocked by how well she knew the words even the Afrikaner and isiZulu parts of it.
You could swear she was the lead singer of the Soweto choristers.
This immediately set me thinking of how much I know with regard to anything that is of national significance vis-à-vis global issues or even sub-Saharan Africa to be precise.
I deem it very shameful that I can actually suggest, contribute or at least form an opinion on national debates across Africa yet I cannot do the same for Lesotho because there seems never to be anything of urgency or interest going on, let alone being debated freely and holistically.
Most of us, the youth, lack opinion on issues that directly affect us with regard to the political or socio-economic aspects of Lesotho and probably its potential.
All I am saying is that one cannot form an opinion if they are ignorant.
The reason for this general ignorance is because the relevant people and institutions are underutilising the media platforms in this country.
As petty as the analogy of the little singing girl may sound, it actually says a lot about how some aspects are exposed versus others.
Why wasn’t she singing the national anthem of Lesotho?
Is South Africa national athem really THAT appealing to the ear?
As little a scenario this might seem, it reflects how we handle our national issues, if they are ever handled or openly discussed that is.
It’s almost like there is never anything happening in Lesotho.
Issues are barely “intellectualised”. Is it because there are no intellects and proper platforms?
Not in some beer stall, because apparently those are places where we get to listen to “intellectuals”.
When was the last time one heard any burning issue being dissected by the nationals, openly, so much that it is even at least apparent to a high school student, that is he/she can at least respond to it irrespective of how shallow the response maybe?
We are all aware of the nationalisation debate as well as the re-established debate with regard to the Wal-Mart and Mass Mart merger in South Africa.
You just cannot afford to miss these issues as they are the most debated, with the hope of finally assisting the relevant institutions to act accordingly or come up with the most conducive policies.
We know about the M2.5 billion bailout to Swaziland for its economic crunch as it has already experienced the first backlash of the 60 percent reduction of Sacu (Southern African Customs Union) revenue with very stringent conditions and democratic reforms among them being to undertake confidence building, fiscal and democratic reforms as required by IMF.
We know about the M4 billion investment by India (one of the fastest emerging markets) in infrastructural development in Zimbabwe.
Just to mention a few of the sub-Saharan African headlines, but what ever happened to the Basotho shield, an official statement is probably still to come through.
All I am attempting to emphasise is the fact that even the most ignorant of citizens in the respective Sub-Saharan African countries is aware of these headlines because they are being thoroughly discussed by concerned nationals.
We are also aware of these issues just like the little girl is of a foreign national anthem.
Fortunately or unfortunately we do not have issues.
Don’t we have concerned nationals or burning issues?
Which reminds me, are elections still on for next year?
Indeed we are a country of the silent lambs!

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Lesotho’s widely read newspaper, published every Thursday and distributed throughout the country and in some parts of South Africa.

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