Tom Eaton Columnist

Separated by the entire length of a continent, the container ship Ever Given and the ANC had nothing to do with each other. And yet, for a day or two at least, they formed a beautiful transcontinental duality; the yin of efficiency and excellence, balanced against the yang of the ANC licking a hanky and trying to scrub the dried gravy off its pants.

On Sunday and Monday the dichotomy was absurdly clear. As teams of immensely skilled experts worked to dislodge the Ever Given from the silt of the Suez Canal, the national executive committee (NEC) of the ANC stared with vacant eyes at our half-submerged rowing-boat of a country and asked itself how water works, whether things ever sink upwards or if they always go downwards, and whether it should just set fire to the boat, sell the damp coal to Eskom and scarper to Dubai...

BL Premium

This article is reserved for our subscribers.

A subscription helps you enjoy the best of our business content every day along with benefits such as exclusive Financial Times articles, ProfileData financial data, and digital access to the Sunday Times and Sunday Times Daily.

Already subscribed? Simply sign in below.

Questions or problems? Email or call 0860 52 52 00. Got a subscription voucher? Redeem it now