Monthly Archives: April 2015

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The MP’s super vehicle

You know you live in a truly blessed nation when a week doesn’t go by without a new story popping up of how your leaders are pushing the envelope. For one, we’ve been pushing brown envelopes for so long and with such zeal, we have very few peers globally. We’ve done it so well, we switched to using sacks to ensure sustainability.

A few weeks ago, we pushed the innovation envelope by choosing to address local manpower problems in the health sector by sending some medical personnel abroad. Only truly gifted people can see that this move will result in more medical personnel coming back since the ones we send will reproduce while there.

To show just how much we own this innovation envelope, a few weeks ago, former Government Chief Whip Justine Kasule Lumumba, unveiled to the world our latest innovation – she shared that 80 NRM MPs work from their vehicles. These forward-thinking leaders have led the way in cutting government expenditure by doing all their work, every single thing, from their cars. She merely let us in on an innovation that’s been many years in planning.

The plan started in 2012 when each MP, fresh into Parliament, received over 100 million for a new vehicle. The blind made a lot of fuss about it, not knowing that it was a huge saving in office space. Considering that there’d be no additional bills for utilities or stationary, 5 years’ worth of office space at that give-away price was a steal.

Phase two happened a year later, in 2013, when each MP was handed an iPad. While we went red with fury, we lost sight of the fact that iPads meant that each ‘office’ now had a computer.

Finally, phase three, last year, Shs. 36 billion was spent on a new parking lot for Parliament. While everyone went up in arms at the price tag, they didn’t know that this lot was no ordinary lot – it would ‘house’ the offices that would drive in and out at will.

We really need to find a way of packaging and commercializing this model quickly before an opportunistic nation steals it.  We’ll then methodically roll it out to other countries starting with developing nations since we know firsthand how they feel about always getting good innovations last.

Are blacks in danger?

It has been about 3 weeks since the last update; that thing where the words you write aren’t worth sharing hit. Thank God those hard days seem to be gone…back to regular (weekly) programming. Here’s something to think about

Kenyan authorities have closed a Chinese restaurant in Nairobi after social media informed us that the place doesn’t allow African patrons to eat there after 5PM. I guess this means that a black person who finds himself still eating at 4:45PM would really have to rush through their sweet and sour pork to beat the impending curfew. My guess is that at 5PM exactly, Jet Li emerges from under the rotating table next to you, levitates to where you are and gestures towards the door. That’s your cue to pay the bill and make a hasty retreat without turning your back to him. If you don’t comply, you get to know what it’s like to be one of the extras in Shaolin temple – you get a beating while the people watching get entertained.

When questioned, the restaurant owner is quoted to have said that they don’t admit Africans they don’t know because they can’t tell who is Al-Shabaab and who isn’t. You cannot argue with that since as any learned owner of an establishment worth talking about will tell you, you cannot trust people walking around with all that melanin in their skins – that stuff can explode at any moment. Your patrons need to enjoy your exquisite stir-fried beef and black bean sauce without being scared for their lives.

Sadly, we’ve heard of blacks being treated different here too. Stories abound of bars (the story usually stars one bar or another along Acacia avenue) that have on a number of occasions made their rounds on the internets for mistreating a Kato, Mbabazi or Okot because they are black. One bar reportedly had (has?) a policy that required black people to pay to enter (while the rest don’t). The motivation for such an interesting policy could be anything; maybe we’ll enter the bar and our dance moves will break furniture so the entrance fee is really us paying for broken furniture upfront. Maybe we’ll be cheapskates and drink one bottle of water all night so they need to make sure the bar bill is paid somehow. Maybe we’ll get too excited at the music playing and become such a nuisance, the other patrons will need therapy. Maybe we are incapable of holding a beer and a conversation; when the beer inevitably pours to the ground, someone will need to clean it up. Maybe we’ll want to pay for our beer with cowrie shells.

Maybe we need the army to look into this too; why do cases of racial discrimination keep dropping bombs on us?

Is racism something we see often enough to worry about here in Uganda? What are your thoughts? Do share in the comments