IT WAS odd for a weekly TV programme titled The Fourth Estate to open with a discussion on KCCA and then follow with something I don’t remember, in the very same week its sister media houses had been closed.
Observing from a distance (many metres from the TV screen), all the noise about media closures seemed to be a hullaballoo that would tide over pretty soon, and we even had another General – the UN Secretary one – come and go without mentioning it.
Personally, I was upset that General David Sejusa aka Tinyefuza, had set this in motion then scarpered off to apparent safety leaving civilians behind to take the heat. Then I became upset with civilians for allowing themselves to be given heat.
Why not just hand over the damn letter – it had been published anyway – then explain that its source was unknown since newspapers always receive anonymous documents in unmarked brown envelopes? Add to that the fact that Gen. Sejusa had confirmed it to be his document and, voila! Back on the streets as a newspaper rather than job-seekers.
We’ve argued and discussed long and heatedly in various forums over how necessary it was to send pick-ups of armed men to media houses to shut them down or conduct a search, and the arguments won’t end any time soon.
But in the middle of the arguments this week, returned the very man who started it all.
This was a fortnight after he had let slide his opportunity to return via Entebbe with a nonplussed look saying, “Eh? The letter? Yes, I am writing another one to tell them to investigate how that first one leaked”, rendering many people speechless.
Instead, he sent an email that should anger anyone who is around the age of forty, like Brig. Muhoozi Kainerugaba, and holds any sort of responsibility.
Now, this is NOT a defence of Brig. Muhoozi Kainerugaba and his career; I mean, this is not a defence of ONLY Brig. Muhoozi Kainerugaba and his career.
I don’t like to write about either Brig. Kainerugaba nor Gen. Sejusa because the six degrees of separation everywhere else in the world shrinks to two degrees in Uganda – therefore I could easily cause damage with a stray comment.
If you read the Gen. Sejusa email message of this week, you would disbelieve it because of the numerous grammatical errors, the scaryflow of thoughts, and contradictions I really don’t want to get into now or ever.
But the simple bits, since it was said in Uganda a short while ago that we “leave things of generals to generals”, are simple:
Sejusa’s sabre-rattling and talk of fighting for freedom is more unnecessary than the media raids were. Yet ironically, it is this that justified the media raids, proving some of the argument points in favour of closure. He loves Uganda so much, he says, that he is willing to take us back into war, after 27 years at the helm of power. He created a #fail, as we say these days.
Ignoring the ironies in his email that were laid thick (for instance Gen. Sejusa also became a general at a young age, and was certainly “fast-tracked” along with many others, and whereas he finds it humiliating to have to salute youngsters…)
Actually, step out of the brackets for this: Gen. Sejusa seems to be against 40-year olds in positions of responsibility alongside his generation, placing most of his focus on the young Brigadier.
Which is surprising because many of us have been agitating for more 40-somethings and younger to get involved in solving Uganda’s problems, rather than the 1960s generation dominating affairs into their fourth decade.
These 40-somethings and younger are mostly free of the onerous history that is plaguing Gen. Sejusa and company, and should present better solutions than sabre-rattling, war-mongering, walk-to-work or even government blunders.
Wherever we are right now, we should be taking charge of affairs as our generational responsibility, not by being allowed to join the table or being told we have been “fast-tracked” after years of service, training and work.
The one thing I agreed with in Gen. Sejusa’s recent email was the signoff that read, written correctly: “Just remember, Uganda is for all of us…”
Gen. Sejusa, read your own words: Uganda is not just for the generals, the war-mongers, the military, or our fathers.
Uganda is for all of us.