If you have been to a Cranes match before, you must have a fresh memory of the love the togetherness, warmth, respect for one another, I haven’t heard a crowd boo one of the players from the other region, not even after missing to score that crucial goal or causing that penalty kick. Wouldn’t you love to feel that admiration and reverence after the match, everyday no matter the part of the country you’re in, everywhere? Isn’t it a good sense of belonging to be Ugandan?
I have been seeing this poster around since the campaigns started that is in Makerere University, but didn’t happen to give it much attention, I haven’t been so drawn into the whole process because I want to see my final semester to the end as soon as possible without last minute rushes and stress. Of late I noticed a change on how it appears compared to the originality, obviously the words are the difference, “MUKYOLI, POVERTY, and VOTE AT YOUR OWN RISK”. These words got me thinking, why, why are we behaving like this? I forgot to say that the poster is printed in black and white.Well I honestly hadn’t noticed his name either until someone redesigned it, he is MUSIIMENTA MOSES, and so am assuming who ever redesigned it is of Bantu ethnicity with an assumption that he is from the north, like most of us youth who save a lot of time to use it doing nothing didn’t notice the name was of the Bantu ethnicity, why I concluded it was redesigned by a Bantu’s son or daughter is because of the word “MUKYOLI”.
WHAT WENT WRONG
Uganda like many other African countries is a fusion of different nationalities and religions. It includes two major linguistic groups, NILOTICS in the north and BANTU in the south. In the southern part of present day Uganda lives people who for centuries had been welded into centralized states with highly sophisticated political systems, with nkikos, a hierarchy of chiefs and laws that governed the relationship between rulers and the ruled. Totally different situation existed in the north and east of Uganda, only that it’s being appreciated and welcomed. They had no such systems, theirs were what are generally referred to as segmented societies.
HOW IT ALL STARTED
Then after the initial grounds for disagreements in Uganda became religious, we all know who introduced that weapon of divide and rule, the initial declaration of the British protectorate in Uganda in the 1890s was due to civil war on religious grounds. Thus religion was divisive rather than a unifying force right from the very beginning of colonialism in Uganda.
British economic, educational and social policies also helped to heighten divisions in Uganda. In 1906 0nwards white settlers introduced coffee, cotton and rubber farms but they were out competed by the indigenous producers which was the government’s main source of income/revenue. By the 1902, indigenous cultivators, mainly BAGANDA, had done so well, the production of coffee and cotton became the cornerstone of the administration’s economic policy, thus BAGANDA were placed at the apex of Uganda’s economic pyramid. The following years the protectorate forced the Buganda lukiko to pass the busulu and nvujjo Act 1927, which guaranteed the peasants the permanent use of their land and greatly reduced the tribute paid to the land owning chiefs, and superiority over there subjects.
This act greatly transformed their status because they were now sole coffee and cotton producers, though it altered the rural society of Buganda. Laborers came from west Nilein particular and also from Rwanda, Burundi and Mwanza and Bukoba areas of Tanzania. Peasants who themselves had previously been exploited immigrant labors and sowed the seed of discontent. Among the immigrant laborers were BAHIMA, who came to herd Baganda’s cattle after losing their own cattle.
For the army, recruitment was based on statue thus the recruitment was reserved for the northerners and people from the east, who it was argued were naturally martial, the army and police become a despised profession, suitable only for uneducated people. When they found themselves sitting in the big office, they had to make sure the once autocrats had to pay the price. This has been a common practice for far too long.
The Bantu-speaking tribes include the Baganda from the central region and, the Batooro, Banyoro, Bakiga, Bafumbira, Bakonjo, Bamba, Banyarwanda and Batwa from the western region, plus the Basoga, Banyuli, Bakenye, Bagishu, Bagwe, Bagwere from the eastern region. There are Bateso, Jopadhola and Karimojong, Kumam. Jonam, Sebi, Pokot (Suk) and Tepeth from the northeastern area, and the Nilotics who include the Acholi, Alur, Langi, Lugbara, Madi, Kakwa in the north. The Lendus from Zaire are also found across the border in Northwestern Uganda.
English is the official language. Many people outside the office also commonly speak it. Luganda is easily the more spoken language in most towns where business is transacted. This is as a result of British colonial rule where the indirect policy of rule used Baganda chiefs to oversee their business. Kiswahili is spoken but not without relative unease because of its association with bad rule and soldiers who went on butchering people in the bad regimes. A number of Languages like Runyakitara and Luganda are examinable as degree courses at Makerere University. kiswahili has been introduced there as well.
KICK THE VICE OUT OF YOUR FAMILY.
A friend whose father is an Acholi and mother a Mugnda feels insecure in both communities, why? When he is visiting his mother land he feels insecure because that community looks at a mother as an unfit to their society, actually not welcome, and when he visits the father it’s the same, no one gets that chance to choose a parent. So, in this case which parent would you choose if it’s a matter of life and death, but if it were your parents’ choice they would make a choice that guarantees you tomorrow like they did before.Who loves more and who loves you less? I love like it that God never gave us that chance to choose parents.
Well, enough with the blame games, it all seems every problem the Ugandan community is facing came with the white man, it’s not me, it’s not us, it’s the white man, it’s the white policies. It’s 50+years and counting since the white man left it all up to us, is he the one who notices for us that this one is a westerner, northerner, easterner or they don’t walk like Baganda (“Tambulanga’Omuganda”), it’s you, me and you.
Which kind of seed are you sowing in the next generation, you children, your siblings, and your community? It starts with you because it started with you in the first place, let’s stop pointing fingers at each other. It starts with you a leader, not the one in that prestigious seat, no, you the comedian, musician, this isn’t something to laugh about. I don’t feel secure in my own community because someone made fun of my culture, let’s not despise ones roots but respect them.
For the selfish mean, leader, be it government, cultural, or religious leaders, who exploit the naive communities because of your hidden agendas using these lines of division to serve your interests, zip it and suck it. Before you revitalize you won’t be here and this beautiful land will or if you think your matter more than those whose voices are not heard like yours is, no you actually don’t. We all breath in this countries air at no cost and you are taking nothing from this country, just make sure your remains fertilize this country to produce good seeds not poisonous ones.
If intermarriages are to solve this so be it, let’s emphasize no choice of parents, and make sure there is no pure blood, besides it improves one quality of genes in one way or another. Hope we all remember the unnecessary killings in the Obote and Amin regimes, what of the Buganda crashes in 2011 of the Kabaka’s visit to one of his counties and the Kasese Bundibujo crashes where everyone is pointing fingers at each other instead of admitting the cause and taking responsibility while people are losing their lives year in year out. This same vice whipped almost half the countries generation in Rwanda.
Parents don’t mention leaders here, you are the leaders constantly failing at parenthood, I don’t beat up people nor abuse them because I was brought up being reminded that I have to respect them, if it was through tears, it was made sure it was the right tears for the right reasons. So it’s up to you to be a parent, be fathers not boys in trousers, and mothers not table flowers, you have feed us before why not feed us again with the right blood.
FOR GOD AND MY COUNTRY