Talking Blues: Heroes and heroines amid leaders fixated on white elephants

By Mapwiya Muulupale “You wouldn’t tolerate an underperforming surgeon in an operating theatre. Why is it that we tolerate underperforming…?” Michael Gove Ancient kings of Siam (present-day Thailand) would sometimes give a white elephant to their enemies. This apparent ‘Royal gift’ meant doom for the recipient because white elephants were considered sacred and needed special care, were not allowed to work, and could not be sold, given away, or killed. Hence the recipient was given a mammoth task, and the unwelcome monstrosity would literally eat the new owner’s fortune till bankruptcy.…

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