A donkey wearing a saddle

The same donkey, but with a new saddle

Meaning: Someone who attained a position unworthily

Originated in: 🇦🇫 Afghanistan

This is an insult or accusation that someone is undeserving of the position they have. It essentially implies that the person is an imposter who has been dressed up, but who does not have what it takes to fulfill their office.

Literally, it talks about a donkey which was promoted to a place of honor. One could think of it as being the royal steed. As such, it got a nice new saddle, but it is still just the same lowly donkey underneath. Getting a fancy saddle didn’t make it a better, stronger donkey or turn it into a horse or a camel. Underneath, it’s still just a normal donkey.

An average donkey might feel unqualified for a special equine position. Likewise, the idiom implies that a person in a position of authority does not deserve it. He is just a donkey who has been given a fancy title/saddle which he does not deserve and which he is not qualified for.