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Looking back at a year that made us say “WTF”?

As we wind down and welcome Dezemba, we thought we’d grace you with a young throwback of the year that was.😉 Read on. 

Where do we begin? 

January seems like the obvious place, and it smells a lot like déjà vu. The second wave arrived after the December break and was accompanied by the beta variant (we were blamed for that one, too 😤). News that vaccines were en route offered some comfort – we kicked off our vaccination programme in February, beginning with our heroic, exhausted healthcare workers.

Some South Africans sprained their tongues trying out Port Elizabeth’s new name, Gqeberha. Devastating fires broke out in parts of Cape Town. The ANC FINALLY suspended former secretary-general Ace Magashule for refusing to step aside after being criminally charged for corruption (he responded by trying to suspend President Ramaphosa🔃). In a line that journalists have written approximately eleventy million times in the past few years, former president Jacob Zuma kept evading justice and nudged our high school history class memories with his Stalingrad tactics. 🥱 After more back and forths than you’ll ever see at Wimbledon, Zuma was sentenced to 15 months in jail for contempt of court in June. He was released on parole in October for medical reasons, but we’re still smarting from the chaos that descended upon our nation when he was actually arrested in July. That difficult period was also a reminder that heroes live among us. We’re talking about you, Nhlanhla Lux. 😇

Zweli Mkhize was forced to step down as health minister because of his involvement in the Digital Vibes saga. At some point, we learned that it’s legal to keep a tiger in your backyard. 🐯Then elections rolled around and heads rolled…metaphorically, we’re glad to say; the ANC took a real beating and lost several metros. ActionSA’s Herman Mashaba and the EFF’s Julius Malema staged their own version of the Netflix hit The Queen’s Gambit by voting DA candidates into power in key cities. This surprised everyone including the blue party. 

Despite the difficulties, we’re making our way out, just like the huge container ship that was wedged in the Suez Canal for a couple of days. (Yep, that was this year!) Now if only Eskom could keep the lights on consistently… 

Elsewhere in the world, the Olympics came and went; Facebook broke and then meta-stasized; Bill Gates got divorced and Donald Trump was finally booted from office. Two rich guys raced to space and R.Kelly was finally convicted of sex crimes. 

The list goes on, and we could, too – but we’ll pause here to give you the breathing room this year was too rude to provide. Look out for our other reviews in the coming weeks! 🤓

This article appeared as part of The Wrap, 2 December 2021. Sign up to receive our weekly updates.