Our First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Public Service, Henry Kajura last week let us in on how he’s under pressure to serve again as MP for Hoima Municipality. Fun fact, he’s been serving as a public servant, in one position or another, since 1966. That’s almost as long as the country has been independent. Just for perspective, the average life expectancy of a chicken is about 8 years. So he’s diligently served through about 7 chicken generations.
To be fair though, we probably didn’t get the entire story. One thing we weren’t told was, “What kind of pressure would someone who’s led for 50 years have to be under to be forced to stand again?” Let’s explore this to balance the reporting. This column is all about objectivity after all.
It is possible that everyone in Hoima has camped at his home and vowed not to leave till he promises to stand again. Put yourself in his shoes – having breakfast with all those people around you. Trying to watch your guilty pleasure, a telenovela, with them peering over your back doing running commentary. Biting into your mandazi as you sip tea in the evening as they collectively stare at you. I imagine he has to ask his kitchen staff to replace cereal with porridge, chicken with mukene and beans with katunkuma – you don’t want your constituents thinking you live too large. The Honorable under pressure probably can’t even use his flat screen TV or his iPad. There’s a movie script lurking in there – an honorable under siege. We could get someone like Morgan Freeman to play Kajura. Imagine the part where he falls asleep in parliament and Rebecca Kadaga (played by Kerry Washington) has to hurl a threat his way to wake him up. He first hears the threat in his dream then it gets louder till he realizes it’s a real thing. Then a stand-off ensues, him vowing to sleep more, her baying for his neck. Pure box office gold.
Maybe the pressure is because one night, he came home to find a guy in a suit and shades, holding a bow and arrow, who promised to be back should he refuse to stand.
All pressure aside, maybe, like our beloved leader, he’s the only one with a vision. Hoima cannot live without you. After 50 years in leadership, surely, you have a lot to give. Sleeping in parliament is only because you have big dreams for the nation, and those dreams come to you easier well, when you are asleep.