Johannesburg - One of the most misquoted verses in the Bible is found in 1 Timothy, chapter 6, verse 10. It reads thus: “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.”
How many times have we heard people say that “money is the root of all evil”?
To make matters worse, I have witnessed Bible-punching preachers attributing the latter saying to Jesus Christ himself.
The actual text is contained in the First Epistle of St Paul to Timothy – they are not even Christ’s words.
When it comes to matters of money, my favourite verse in the Bible is found in Ecclesiastes, chapter 10, verse 19, which reads: “A feast is made for laughter, wine makes life merry and money is the answer for everything.”
I love the latter part – that money is the answer for everything.
In fact, a wise individual took it even further and coined the phrase “money makes the world go round”.
My observation has been that people who do not have a lot of moolah – those who fall in the category of the poor – are wont to say money is the root of evil.
In contrast, those swimming in cash are more inclined to say money is the answer for everything, and that it does indeed make the world go round.
Came in with a plan
I followed the Keagan Dolly transfer saga with a keen interest.
What got me even more interested was the way mining mogul Patrice Motsepe gave Europe the middle finger – in a polite way.
His gesture can be likened to telling someone to go to hell in such a cunning way that they look forward to the trip.
The Mamelodi Sundowns president appeared as cool as a cucumber as he explained that he was not going to be bullied into going into an agreement regarding his prized asset.
What Motsepe did is an example that should be followed by other local clubs. Rather than settle for peanuts, just put your foot down.
Some European clubs had the temerity of dictating to Sundowns how much Dolly was worth and how they were willing to pay that amount in tranches.
This is a typical Eurocentric approach – that anything African is inferior. The West is quick to point out how many dictators there are on this continent, but they forget how people from their part of the world tend to dictate and impose themselves on to people from these backwaters.
For the record, when Motsepe got involved in football, he came in with a plan.
As soon as he had acquired full ownership of the Brazilians, he pronounced that the days of slave salaries were a thing of the past.
Not only did he increase the players’ remuneration, he went out to buy the best players for his club, and he still does.
It is not by accident that Sundowns emerged as the best club in Africa last season.
In addition, it was not just a stroke of luck that they found themselves competing against the best in the world in the recent Fifa Club World Cup held in Japan.
As Gary Player once opined: “The more I practice, the luckier I get.” In sport, you make your own luck.
European clubs can’t expect to come here and point at a player like someone pointing at a ripe apple on a tree. The reason they spotted him and made advances means that he is good enough to play for them.
So why not pay a fair price?
That said, if Motsepe were not as monied as he is, chances are he would have been similar to Lazarus in the Bible – who lived on the crumbs from the rich man’s table.
It’s time for Africans to stop allowing themselves to be treated like Lazaruses.
Well done, Motsepe for showing us the way.
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