Here’s a piece of advice. And it’s free: If ever you are caught with your snout in the trough, follow these simple steps.
Look at the person in front of you straight in the eye, put on a condescending air and repeat after me: “All procedures have been followed; my conscience is clear; in the interest of the country; I am very serene and highly competent; everything I possess, I have obtained through hard work and sweat! I was making so much more in the private sector and I have sacrificed myself for the country”. There, there! If you manage to blabber all this in one breath, with an inordinate degree of arrogance and the right amount of disdain, you are a good candidate for high office.
Be generous in glorifying your past. No one will ask you for a past pay slip or tax returns. So play on, particularly if you are on a forum like the MBC, where you won’t be challenged or your Facebook page where no proof is required.
Deflect the debate away from the issue and shift the blame onto the accuser – journalists, political opponents... Keep stressing your competence and that of your cronies and insist on your innocence without giving any details.
If you happen to belong to the fairer sex – the one which never commits any offence – use that weapon extensively. It is absolutely lethal. “I am a woman and, therefore, a wife, a sister, a mother and a daughter so how dare you!” Repeat this oftentimes. It always works.
You may be called Youshreen Choomka, Roubina Jadoo-Jaunbocus, Sheila, Naila or Maya Hanoomanjee, Ameenah Gurib-Fakim, Sandhya Boygah, Gérard Sanspeur, Showkutally Soodhun, Kailash Trilochun, Sherry Singh, Gayle Yerriah, Vijaya Sumputh, Vishnu Lutchmeenaraidoo, or indeed anyone else we may have forgotten, remember you have done nothing wrong. Absolutely nothing. For as long as your protectors are in power, you will never be guilty of anything. The press will make a bit of noise – that’s what we are paid to do – the opposition will ask some embarrassing questions – that’s what their job is – your protector will give some irrelevant answers and back to your business as usual.
Whether you are enjoying a special favour or are involved in corruption, using your office for gratification, fraud or any other crime or you are simply drawing obscene amounts of money from the government coffers, there is nothing to worry about. At worst, a commission of enquiry will be brandished. If it ever comes to that, you may be asked to resign and go and enjoy all the money you have been stashing away. At best, you just avoid the press and safely hide in your funk hole.
So relax, enjoy yourself and carry on stuffing your pockets full at our expense. Milk your position to extract maximum personal benefit and make sure that your pockets are bursting with money, your safe is chock-full with jewellery, your cupboards have a fine stock of designer shoes you didn't have to pay for and the garage of your palatial mansion boasts a fleet of gleaming German limousines.
While enjoying the manna from heaven, spare a little time for a short prayer if you can: Pray that another scandal breaks out and displaces yours. Such prayers are always answered these days. So keep on praying!
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