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PAIA, 2000 (Act 2 of 2000) 

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City employees urged to watch anti-corruption play Print E-mail
06 February 2017

The Mother of All Eating, a play written by distinguished South African author and playwright Zakes Mda more than two decades ago about the ugly and destructive nature of corruption is back on stage.

The timeless classic, set in Lesotho in the early 1980s, makes a welcome return to Johannesburg after a successful run at the Market Theatre in 2014 and at the 2012 edition of the City of Johannesburg’s International Arts Alive Festival. This time it is exclusively for City employees.

Opening at the Joburg Theatre on Tuesday February 7 for a four-show run, The Mother of All Eating is a must-watch, especially as rampant corruption continues to eat away at the fabric of society in frightening proportions and puts the government in a bad light.

The play – which talks to Johannesburg Executive Mayor Cllr Herman Mashaba’s declaration of corruption as “Public Enemy No 1” – will also be staged at the Roodepoort Theatre from 14-17 February and Soweto Theatre from 21-24 February.

The 75-minute long satire deals with issues that South Africans continue to experience on a daily basis, such as the betrayal by those in power and the rank neglect of disadvantaged communities.

The evergreen play’s prediction of government corruption finding all its way to the top has become eerily true.
The production centres on a character called The Man, a principal secretary of a government minister.

The Man is corrupt to the core and has enriched himself within the ranks of his government at the expense of the poor. He is the main figure implicated in a recent government tender deal gone wrong. The deal comes back to haunt him, causing his extravagant lifestyle to come to an abrupt end.

The play also explores the unfortunate culture of corruption, known as “eating”. This culture has become synonymous with corrupt state officials who enrich themselves by abusing taxpayers’ money. The Mother of All Eating is, sadly, more relevant today than it was those many years ago.

It is for this reason that Member of the Mayoral Committee for Community Development Cllr Nonhlanhla Sifumba has urged City employees to watch it and called on them to reject, resist and report fraud and corruption.

She says for public servants, the play shows the importance of running a clean and transparent administration.

“I’d like to encourage employees to book their seats and go watch the play – it’s free of charge,” said Cllr Sifumba.

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