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The East African : Aug 29th 2015
22 The EastAfrican OPINION AUGUST 29 - SEPTEMBER 4, 2015 LAST WORD If Museveni’s like Jesus, can we expect a Second Coming? (And a Thi≥d? And a Fou≥th? And...) Uganda’s President Yoweri Illustration: Patrick Gathara Joachim Buwembo Uganda can’t have an A≥ab Sp≥ing? So what about a Winte≥ of Despai≥? conditions that sparked the Tunisian revolution, when a frustrated youth set himself ablaze, are different from ours. But last week, we narrowly survived such a spark igniting in, of all places, parliament. It was during a parliamentary ses- U sion when a youthful MP from eastern Ugandan, Hon Geoffrey Ekanya, tried to commit suicide in frustration. The government had refused to give his people a new district and Ekanya could not take it any longer. Some 22 districts had been given out to add to the already existing 112, but his area missed out. Moreover, it is in his area that a man ate a squeaking live rat in front of the president to show how desperately they needed a district. Ekanya has been fighting for that dis- trict for a decade and when the new ones were announced and his area was not among the lucky ones, he lost it, re-knotted his necktie and started the process of strangling himself. It was the quick action of fellow legislators who grabbed him that saved the country from witnessing an unprecedented tragedy. If Ekanya, who is from the opposition FDC party, had succeeded in dying like the Tunisian youth, the country would undoubtedly ganda’s leaders have repeatedly said that the Arab Spring cannot take place here. They argue that the have erupted into a terrible uprising and denied us the democratic elections coming in less than six months. This is not unfounded pessimism, for the people are really on edge. The day the MP tried to strangle himself, a Catholic priest also from eastern Uganda was being rushed to hospital bleeding profusely from self-inflicted wounds. The man of God had stabbed himself repeatedly because, reportedly, a friend of his of the opposite gender had been dishonest to him. People are stressed. If you check through the local newspa- pers, you will see how rampant crimes of passion have become. Too many college girls are being slain in cold blood by their lovers. These days, love in Uganda is less expressed through acts of kindness and more through violence. Some of the killers readily admit their actions. What is happening? Something else that is confusing is happening daily in broad daylight on the roads. There are so many mad people who imagine they are presidents and go around using armed men to chase all traffic off the road as they drive past. This happens after numerous official clarifications that only the president and ambulances can claim such a privilege. So why are so many people suffering from the delusion that they are the president or that they are critically ill? Another strange thing that is very Illustration: John Nyaga unlike us has been happening as the campaigns begin gathering momentum. For as long as we can remember, campaigning candidates give voters inducements in the form of drinks, snacks, clothes and above all, money. But now the reverse has started happening. These days wherever opposition aspirant Dr Kizza Besigye goes to address the crowds, the voters shower him with cash. Yes, Ugandans peasants and urban crowds contribute cash to their candidate. It could just be a matter of time till voters start collecting money for other can- didates as well. Could these be the signs that the end times are nigh? Museveni is comparable to Jesus? According to Deputy Speaker of Parliament Jacob Oulanyah, President Museveni is like Jesus Christ who left his comfort zone of heaven and opted to come down to earth to die for sinners. “There was a time in Uganda when people had no right of worship. President Museveni and the NRM government ushered in peace and security and promoted the right of worship.” He argued that Christians and all believers in this country should cling onto President Museveni because he protects their right to worship. “Make President Museveni your spiritual hero for continued development in Uganda,” Mr Oulanyah said. fluffed the second Honduran teenager Neysi Perez, 16, collapsed in an apparent panic attack after hearing a burst of gunfire and was pronounced dead by doctors three hours later. “As I put my hand on her grave I could hear noises inside. I heard banging, then I heard her voice. She was screaming for help. It had already been a day since we buried her. I couldn’t believe it. I was ecstatic, full of hope,” said her father, Rudy Gonzales. Relatives claimed they foundthe glass viewing window on her coffin had been smashed and the tips of her fingers covered in bruises. But despite efforts to revive her medics found no signs of life and she was later returned to the cemetery and reburied in the same mausoleum. ... But this teenager Teargas has shilling scampering for cover Ugandan Finance Minis- ter Matia Kasaija has argued that the importation of teargas is one of the factors responsible for the loss of value of the Ugandan shilling against the dollar. He daringly argues that teargas should be the last item to import, not just because it shows a failure of policing, but also because it needlessly swells the public administration bill. “It means you cannot control the people unless you subdue them. Investors will not be falling over themselves to dive into a country where police look for the slightest excuse to use force on unarmed civilians, and where the air is habitually poisoned by tear gas,” he noted. But Private Sector Foundation Uganda executive director Gideon Badagawa argued that the real reason is that Uganda is not attracting enough foreign direct investment and the central bank is not doing enough to control the outflow of foreign currency A cake a year keeps a marriage fresh A couple in New York are still enjoying their wedding cake 60 years after their marriage. The pair, Ann and Ken Fredericks, have enjoyed a small bite of their cake, washed down with a bottle of champagne, on each anniversary since 1955. The dark fruitcake was made by Ann’s grandmother and the couple reckon the cake has never spoiled, and simply needs a drop of brandy every so often to keep it moist. You can’t boa≥d the plane, madam, you’≥e al≥eady flying You are too drunk to fly! A Chinese woman who spent $236 on a bottle of fine brandy at an airport was dismayed when she was told she wasn’t allowed to take it on the plane. So, the woman, named only as Ms Zhao, instead downed the whole bottle at Customs, rather than waste so much cash. Unfortunately, she subse- quently fell into a stupor — and was told she was too drunk to board the flight. Staff at Beijing Airport said she started acting wildly and yelling incoherently. Ms Zao was carried to a side room at the airport and allowed to sleep it off for a few hours while airport staff tracked down her family to come and get her.
Aug 22nd 2015
Sep 5th 2015