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Tuesday,August 04,2020 16:29 PM

Why shoot own foot?

By Vision Reporter

Added 11th February 2011 03:00 AM

SHOULD you be traversing our often ill-kempt city streets and espy an officious gentleman (far less likely: lady) heavily limping, it could be a Movement leader, eagerly looking for rebellious tendencies.

SHOULD you be traversing our often ill-kempt city streets and espy an officious gentleman (far less likely: lady) heavily limping, it could be a Movement leader, eagerly looking for rebellious tendencies.

By John Nagenda

SHOULD you be traversing our often ill-kempt city streets and espy an officious gentleman (far less likely: lady) heavily limping, it could be a Movement leader, eagerly looking for rebellious tendencies.

The limping is the result of shooting himself in the foot, or both feet. With great Power often comes Farce. Our Movement, to which your on-the-whole-loyal columnist belongs, has done wonders for Uganda over the last three decades. But it is made up of humans, and to err is human.

The feeling is growing that the Movement might well be on its way to totalitarianism; that it likes everything done its way. Some see it as a Giant that leans on smaller beings. How has this come about? Who are the Big Beasts who chew you for breakfast?

Today there remain only six days before the eagerly awaited General Elections of 18 February. One local difficulty apart (but that, the one of the 70 hopefuls for parliament who will almost certainly be thrown out of the race) things are going completely well for the Movement. Its Leader, President Y K Museveni, is way out ahead of the other presidential (un)hopefuls.

This column, remember, was first some months ago with “65% and above” for his chances; he himself feels nearer 70%, and why not? Nearest to him is perennial loser, Dr Kizza Besigye, with 15%; the other six range between 3 – 0%: hardly important in the context. Therefore the Movement is doing so well it only has to idle down to the winning line. The only danger would be for its voters not turning up on the day to vote, feeling that victory was already in the bag; it never is until that fat lady has sung! What else? Having stirred up the waters with the speedy passage of its government’s so-called Kings Bill (surely it would have safely gone through all its constitutional stages in the forthcoming House), rumours are now rife that it wants to go for religious leaders and plans to enact a law to keep them from straying from religious matters into politics.

For shame, if so! And so far it is impossible to nail a single Movement leader who has worked out an agenda to that effect. How do you completely keep religious leaders out of politics; politics, like breathing, being an integral part of life? Some will ask, If that is the case why then bar kings and other traditional rulers? It is a matter of degree.

Religious leaders, however prestigious, can be, and often are, taken to court. But dare to do this to a traditional leader or king and you start something difficult to stop. Religious leaders (dare one say?) are a different breed in most contemporary cases.

In Uganda today, it is not unusual to see them even squaring up for fisticuffs. And, in any case, when that Northern church leader, notorious supporter of the dreadful Kony, has been left free to speak in his favour, while ill-mouthing Government, has it finally mattered?

Then we read of (admittedly vexatious) persons handing out notices in public places denigrating Government for funds given to MPs. So what? But apparently these people are being made to walk the plank to city police stations for explanation. For God’s sake, let them parade and otherwise waste their time if they so choose! The Movement government must not be seen to be petty.

Every time 15% Besigye seems destined for burial by the electorate, we must not spring up to buy him air-time! (Incidentally, where does he hide Hon Latigo, FDC leader in parliament, when he criss-crosses the nation for votes? Most strange!)

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A Bishop, good friend over many years, phoned me after the Column last week. He was in transports over my use of Purgatory, when discussing “neither vote in Heaven nor on Earth” during such a state. But he threw an equal measure of opprobrium on my view that adult same-sex lovers should be left to their own devices. He likened me to a fellow Bishop of his, also a friend of mine, whose support of these folk had led to fiery quarrels in the Church of Uganda. My friend, Bishop John, I still answer thus: Let us agree to disagree!

It brings me to the recent murder of one David Kato. It has now come to light that to some (including those whom he lured into “homoism” for the price of a cheap meal) Kato was not all he seemed to be, but a predator, often of the young. If so, was it not ill-advised for sympathisers, like the Archbishop of Canterbury and the US President, and countless others besides, to rush blindly with comment on his death?

In other words, belonging to the ill-treated homosexual and lesbian minorities does not necessarily raise your status. Even if Kato was at the same time what some took him to be: an activist for same-sex love, it seems vastly OTT (over the top) for people the world over to pull their hair out and tear their garments over the hammer murder of this one person.

Ask yourself this: Would all these people have crammed the air-waves with their cries if the dreadful murder had been between heterosexual lovers? If not, why not?

Why shoot own foot?

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