BBC’s Resident President is “Studying” for a Ph.D
Olushambles, one of the resident Presidents of BBC Africa’s “Resident Presidents”, claims that he is “studying” for a Ph.D. However, Kibarkingmad, his fellow resident President, questions his commitment to studies. Please read a transcription of that satirical program as aired yesterday.
Kibarkingmad: Ah! You are very quiet, Olushambles.
Kibarkingmad: It’s not like you at all.
Kibarkingmad: Not feeling well?
Olushambles: Keep quiet!
Kibarkingmad: I have never known you to be so silent for so long.
Olushambles: I am studying, Kibarkingmad.
Olushambles: Yes. S-T-U-D-Y-I-N-G. Studying!
Kibarkingmad: I see!
Olushambles: So, shut up! Show some respect.
Olushambles: Yes, Kibarkingmad.
Kibarkingmad: What are you studying for?
Olushambles: A PHD.
Kibarkingmad: PHD! In what?
Olushambles: What does PHD stand for?
Kibarkingmad: Doctor of Philosophy?
Olushambles: Well, that’s what I am studying. Philosophy. F-I-L-O-S-O-F-Y!
Kibarkingmad: I don’t think that’s how you spell philosophy, Olushambles.
Olushambles: Well, I am studying it, Kibarkingmad. So, I should know.
Kibarkingmad: Eh! Normally, Olushambles, ehm…. When people study, they read books or they go to lectures or….
Olushambles: Do they?
Kibarkingmad: But you are just sitting there, playing video games on your computer and not a book to be seen.
Olushambles: Okay, that’s it.
Kibarkingmad: That’s what?
Olushambles: Enough studying. I am ready.
Kibarkingmad: Ready for what?
Olushambles: Excuse me, Kibarkingmad. I am just making a call.
Olushambles: (Makes telephone call) Em, is that the Vice Chancellor? Oh! Good, good. And how is the university ticking along? Good! Shot any student recently? Hahahaha! Em, well, let me know if there is any more trouble and I would send the police in. That would teach them. Eh! Now, about my PHD? Yes! Yes, really well. I have enjoyed the studying. Your Plato, Sophocles, Aquinas, yes! All good friends of mine! Eh! So, when do I pick up my degree? I am free next Thursday, if that’s alright with you. (Pause) Exam! What do you mean ‘exam’? Standards? What do you mean ‘standards’? Protest? Why should anyone protest? My people love me. And they would be very pleased by my academic achievements. Look, look, look, Mr Vice Chancellor! There are plenty of people queuing up to do your job, you know. And remember what happened to your predecessor. Good! So, see you next Thursday then (ends the call).
Kibarkingmad: Hmm. That’s disgraceful, Olushambles.
Olushambles: What is?
Kibarkingmad: Bullying a Vice Chancellor into giving you a degree.
Olushambles: Are you saying I am not bright enough to get a PHD?
Olushambles: Are you implying I am stupid?
Olushambles: More stupid than Grace Mugabe?
Kibarkingmad: Eh eh! What’s she got to do with it?
Olushambles: She got a PHD. Didn’t she?
Kibarkingmad: It’s just the amount of studying you’ve done, Olushambles. Or haven’t done.
Olushambles: Did Grace Mugabe do any studying?
Kibarkingmad: Hmmm. I don’t think so.
Olushambles: Did she read any books? I don’t think she even knows what a book is, unless its encrusted with diamonds. Within months of enrolling at the University of Zimbabwe, she got a degree. First class, of course. And was personally capped by the great Robert.
Kibarkingmad: Hmmm! I think she is under investigation now, Olushambes. Questions are being raised about her suitability for a PHD and about the university staff who agreed to give it to her.
Olushambles: Oh, really? And did they raise questions, I wonder, when the great Bob was in power? Did they ask her if she could spell Philosophy or Gemology?
Kibarkingmad: What’s that?
Olushambles: Study of shoes. I don’t think so. I shouldn’t imagine they bothered to test her in anything. In my experience, universities would do what they are told if they are frightened enough or greedy enough.
Kibarkingmad: I bet you couldn’t get yourself a degree at a respectable university.
Olushambles: Ah! That’s what you think? Didn’t I tell you about my BA from Oxford?
Olushambles: My MA from Cambridge?
Olushambles: My MPhil from Yale and my Msc from Harvard?
Kibarkingmad: How did you get those?
Olushambles: Easy. You send a cheque to the Vice Chancellor or offer to build them a new library or a science wing.
Kibarkingmad: Oho! So, could I get myself a degree at Harvard or Yale or Oxfordbridge?
Olushambles: Don’t be ridiculous, Kibarkingmad. They do have some standards.
Photo: BBC Africa