15 October 2009


Trevor Manuel, the ex-financial minister of South Africa has set tongues wagging with his out-of-character purchase of a BMW 750i costing over a million rand. To add to this faux pas, he ordered that it be custom fit with some ‘standard extras’ costing R 99, 200.

Really? Really? Wow! Can Trevor Manuel not be more of a hypocrite?! After telling the people of South Africa to be prudent, he goes and does this? It would have been better were we not in the throes of recession or if he was not advocating things to which he does not adhere. Then, he would simply be labelled a big spender or this may even have applied as a mistake: the car could always be taken back. But that is not the real story. Politicsweb reports that Manuel has joined a growing list of ministers who are buying expensive cars at the cost of the tax payers. Were we to sit down and calculate the total bill for ministerial vehicles, we would apparently come up with the sum of R 42, 612, 406.00.

What is so special about these cars? The purpose of any vehicle should be to take the passenger from point A to point B, not to teleport them or fly – which, judging from the millions of rands spent – these cars are apparently able to do. The ministers should rather try public transport, since they are always on about “getting closer to the people”. My amazement buds like a gigantic flower in an eternal Spring.