Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Fun in Ventersdorp


Ventersdorp is a small town, forgotten in time. Black people are not allowed in the local church, they fly the old South African flag and most white residents wear khaki clothes. It is in this not-so-delightful little dorpie that I found myself yesterday after being assigned to join two of my darker-skinned colleagues to cover the second court appearance of the two men accused of murdering AWB leader Eugene Terre Blanche.

We got there and joined other local and foreign media in a virtual camp set up across the road from the Ventersdorp court house. Our lawyers arrived to lodge an application to have the matter held in open court because one of the accused is a minor, meaning that legally it should all be done behind closed doors. They all left quickly in their natty suits after it emerged that the teenager was abandoning his bail application because, for the first time in his life, he was being kept in a place where he could sleep on a bed, eat three meals a day, wear shoes, go to school and watch TV in the evenings. The media battle will go ahead on another day.
Limited seats in the tiny courtroom meant that only a few journalists could actually attend the court hearing of the older accused, so many of us were left outside in the Ventersdorp sun where we watched the local action. Union members participating in the municipal strike made use of the opportunity to toyi toyi in front of cameras.
And then AWB heavyweight Andre Visagie - yes, the tall Afrikaner who made news last week after storming out of that live TV interview with a show host who coined that delightful new phrase "Don't touch me on my studio" - came to address us.
It was a cringy experience. He spoke a load of rubbish and said stacks of offensive stuff like "we boere are not available as a brick for President Jacob Zuma to use in building his rainbow nation".
It was hot and dusty and fairly boring for the most part.
And we all get to go back for the next appearance in a month!

4 comments:

  1. 聰明的人喜歡猜心 雖然每次都猜對了卻失去了自己的心 ..................................................

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  2. Diehards of whatever race will become dinosaurs and eventually die out. Those who change and adapt to new circumstances will be the ones who come out stronger in the end. There will always be the smallminded minority who are too scared to accept any changes to their lives. I am glad I am not one of them.

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  3. And then you have wankers like the one in the photograph who walk around with their hands on their guns.
    I don't understand the khaki thing... I really don't.

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