Jaco Van Der Merwe

By Jaco Van Der Merwe

Head of Motoring

Forget about Bathabile … where is Bantu Holomisa?

Now is the time to add my two cents and it has actually nothing to do with the people who made the cut, but rather with one in particular who didn’t.

In the aftermath of President Cyril Ramaphosa’s much-anticipated Cabinet reshuffle, there has been much unhappiness in various quarters over the retention of two ministers in particular, Malusi Gigaba and Bathabile Dlamini, causing outrage from opposition and the twitterati.

Now is the time to add my two cents and it has actually nothing to do with the people who made the cut, but rather with one in particular who didn’t.

Why the hell was Bantu Holomisa again snubbed for the position of Minister of Sport?

I can’t think of a more suitable candidate for any Cabinet job.

Tokozile Xasa, who ousted Thulas Nxesi, is an experienced politician in her own right, but that is beside the point.

She doesn’t have any striking affiliation to anything sporting wise, exactly like most of her predecessors.

Nxesi had no sporting credentials and was very much a background figure, Fikile Mbalula had no sporting background and rambled on like a clueless idiot in the foreground and don’t forget Ngconde Balfour’s infamous remark: “Who is Jacques Kallis?”

At least Smokie sold a few extra albums after cricket fans further adapted the already adapted version of Living Next Door to Alice.

According to the limited biographies Google dishes up on Xasa, she is a qualified teacher who came through municipal structures and ended up in government boasting a portfolio bereft of anything sporting.

My bet is, at best she coached netball somewhere as a teacher and plays a bit of tennis over weekends.

That is sadly not enough to convince any athlete, sporting body or spectator that she is the right person for the job.

Holomisa on the other hand, is pitch perfect to the whole Ramaphosa ideology of restoring pride and faith in the post-Zuma era we find ourselves in.

For starters, the former major-general played rugby for Transkei, the former “independent homeland” he also oversaw as part of the military rule.

During his time spent there, he coached football at club level, a sport he remains passionate about and is also a self-confessed Kaizer Chiefs fan.

He is a passionate Proteas cricket fan who once famously called for Wayne Parnell’s head on Twitter and top of it all, he knows his way around a golf course.

You throw in an astute disciplinarian approach required to lead an army in overthrowing a government and his parliamentary experience spanning more than two decades as the leader of the UDM, and the package is complete.

Here’s why.

He, for one, should know the importance of the right fitness regime taking his military background into account.

Never will a Bafana player run out of breath again.

They will also do push-ups and make up their own beds until they learn how to score goals.

As a former wing, he will appreciate the importance of enforcing a more expansive game plan on the Boks, ensuring the speedy backs get more ball, score more tries and make fans happy again.

Being outspoken on Parnell’s wayward bowling, he clearly understands the need to keep things tight with the ball, resulting in fewer runs conceded by the Proteas and smaller targets to chase.

And because he can hold a golf club, he can rub shoulders with corporate heads and secure much-needed lucrative sponsors for all our sporting codes.

You have to agree, it would be a match made in heaven.

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