Over a year ago, thousands of South Africans said #ZumasResigned. We didn’t wait for him to hand over his resignation. We took it from him. Because there was nowhere lower for Zuma to step down to, we didn’t ask for him to step down. We dismissed him in our minds and turned President Jacob Zuma into #FormerPresidentJacobZuma.
[Update, noon, 15 December 2015: it is being said that someone hacked into ANC webpage and announced that Zuma has been recalled. Someone else retracted. I suggest we run with the recall and never look back]
We beat National Assembly and the ANC NEC to it. We made him irrelevant, relegating him to history before he was ready to be one of its artefacts.
Today at one, they announce something big.
We can colour the mood of the announcement before it happens; accept and make peace with the fact that Zuma has been recalled before anything is said. We can do this so clearly as to leave no room for any other possibility. We, the citizens, decide the headline before a handful of politicians do. If government announces something other than what citizens have accepted as the way things are, they will show themselves as behind and unaware of the settled sentiments of the country.
We prepare for Zuma’s exit from Presidency by pronouncing its prognosis to be hopeless. We stifle whatever hope there may have been with a huge but solemn outpouring of collective, advance grief over the presidency we declare to no longer be. Goodbye Zuma. It’s over.
Let’s have a minute of silence to let it sink in. The laughter is but an echo now. The systematic undermining and open mockery of our constitutional establishments – Public Protector, Judiciary and the network of patronage that’s sunken its tentacles through the Executive – is over. Oversight and Parliament rendered toothless – that’s over too. Goodbye nuclear-cost nuclear deals: it was never meant to be.
We say goodbye to endless court-cases and a roller-coaster Rands, to the spin and the doctoring and hollow-voiced volleying. To the succession of mistresses and the success of friends with fake qualifications. To Waterkloof air base Gupta jet landings and Marikanas.
So fill out the mortality report. Complete the task. Switch off the life support. Take away the oxygen mask.
Hear the breathing grow fade out. Softer. Quieter. Nothing.
A year ago, we shouted #ZumasResigned.
Today, out of respect, we whisper #GoodbyeZuma.
We shush and stifle anyone who rudely raises his voice to yell anything to the contrary.
The corpse is still. The porters are here.
Perform his last rites. Assemble the mourners. Tell it not to his enemies, lest they revel in it. Let our children’s children hear about the Presidency that no longer is. Let the urban legends about the Man Who Was Presidency begin. That we see his ghost, but he no longer is. Let him be a myth that older children use to scare younger ones; a boogey-man, a national lesson learned.
The time is 1 this afternoon. Call it in advance.
#GoodbyeZuma. His Presidency Is Dead.
Siya Khumalo blogs about religion, politics and sex
Please follow and share @SKhumalo1987