Bobi Wine moves, homosexuality a damp squib at presidential debate Reply

Bobi wine.1

Robert Kyagulanyi, aka Bobi Wine

Bobi Wine (real name Robert Kyagulanyi), he of the big lips and erstwhile big mouth which got him barred from performing at two London venues, has changed his mind and is now preaching the gospel of tolerance.

In a Facebook post, Kyagulanyi acknowledged that we must be tolerant of everyone’s differences, including our differing sexualities. Hmm … One has to be charitable and look at where a man is going, rather than where he has been, so yours truly will accept that Kyagulanyi is trying to make amends for his ill-informed  excoriation of a section of his fellow citizens and fans. Mr. Kyagulanyi’s words:

“In my life,I have disagreed with many people over many issues. Our opinions have differed on religion,sexual preferences,politics and a wide range of ideologies. There are reasons why we differ in thinking ranging from the way we are brought up,our geographical locations,Social classification and the general mindset of societies where we live. That however doesn’t mean that an individual is superior or inferior to the other just because they differ in opinions about the above. My key message this year is;”Ayawuka kundowoza yo tekimufula mulabe wo” (difference in opinion doesn’t make us enemies). Let us approach every issue with respect for one another,let us replace violence with tolerance, Yes! TOLERANCE; Let us tolerate each other no matter how far distant our opinions might differ. I believe that if we all subscribed to only one opinion,we would be damn fools,”

Way to go, Bobi Wine. Yours truly thinks it is okay for you and others to have ambivalent, even negative, views about homosexuality. What is not okay is for anyone to support the criminalization and/or marginalization of anyone based on who they are or to act upon their feelings in a way that is ruinous. So, your call for tolerance is  very much welcome.

No show

No show: Uganda’s obfuscating Yoweri Museveni

It was also the week in which Uganda held its first fully-fledged presidential debate. Despite the president of the country chickening out of the debate, it went ahead thank you very much. The highlight of the debate for yours truly was the question posed to the respective candidates about their views on homosexuality.

Amama Mbabazi who is on already the record publicly rejecting the anti-homosexuality bill and supporting non-interference into adult sexual freedoms sidestepped answering directly, perhaps rather understandably for the type of forum it was. Some of the the other candidates had harsh words about homosexuality but their input isn’t one that should worry us too much since they have no chance whatever of getting into office.

What should have been a highly incendiary topic three years ago thus went down like a lead balloon that barely deserves spending time on here. Yours truly is already looking forward to election day, February 18 2016 at which, it is now apparent, politician’s views on homosexuality will not play a significant part in the vote. And that can only be a good thing.

It, however, needs to be noted that Uganda’s president of 30 years has changed his position on homosexuality more times than a corkscrew opening a wine bottle; being against it, then for it, then against it, condemning legislation for it, requesting for scientific input which he then spun to his own ends, before he rejected and signed the anti-homosexuality bill into law. In fact he’s the only candidate in the race with more than 3 positions on this subject. That in of itself is a good thing because, with the president’s position changing depending on his intended audience, there is no more political capital to be gained for any other candidate to nail their colors to the mast of supporting same-sex relationships.

 

The choices before LGBT Ugandans in February 2016

The 2016 polls are around the corner Ugandan gay boys and girls (LGBT). One hopes that you registered to  vote. If you didn’t, and must sit it out, never mind; you can redeem yourself for 2021.

In the meantime, it is important for LGBTs who have registered to vote to have a clear mind about what is best for the gay community and the country. Yours truly, as always, will not mince words on the choices before us … and the country.

There are three viable candidates; the incumbent of 30 years (Yoweri Museveni); perennial also-ran , Kiiza Besigye; and Amama Mbabazi who outfoxed his boss and jumped ship to challenge him.

In Besigye we know we have an ally because he has openly supported the gay cause, most notably in the run-up to the 2011 polls when he savaged the anti-homosexuality bill and reiterated his lack of interest in policing adult consensual sexual relationships.

Candidate Besigye visiting Abim "Hospital"

Candidate Besigye visiting Abim “hospital”

What’s not clear yet is how the LGBT movement would harness his support but there is no doubt that as a medical doctor, he couldn’t possibly overlook Uganda’s scandalously medieval medical provision. Kiiza Besigye is a man we can do business with.

Then Prime Minister, Mbabazi, on a surprise visit to a public hospital

Then Prime Minister, Mbabazi, on a surprise visit to a public hospital

We can also rely on Amama Mbabazi. He, too, has dismissed anti-gay legislation publicly. It is also not a mean feat for anyone to stand up to his boss in the way Mbabazi has. This man has a spine of steel, something that Uganda needs in any leader who wishes to take on the corruption that Yoweri Museveni has encouraged in every aspect of Ugandan life. Don’t forget, too, that Mbabazi knows where all the current government’s bodies are buried.

Solome Nakaweesi-Kayondo: a woman you want on your side

Solome Nakaweesi-Kayondo: a woman we have on our side

Yes, it’s taken Mbabazi 30 years to abandon Museveni’s corruption-ridden ship and throw his hat in the ring, but it’s not where a man has been but where he is going that matters. Besides, how could we possibly fail to get a receptive audience with President Mbabazi with the indomitable Solome Nakawesi-Kayondo as his Chief of Staff?

Yoweri Museveni's private jet - An ambulance in Northern Uganda

Yoweri Museveni’s private jet – A makeshift ambulance in Northern Uganda

Our, and the country’s, worst scenario is to get Museveni back in. Though he was useful on the political front at pivotal moments in the anti-gay bill fight, that fight is now not a critical concern. We also know that Museveni chopped and turned incoherently on the bill for his own selfish ends. Yes, he kept the bill from being debated on the floor of Parliament for more than three years, but that was about keeping donor funds flowing, not any overarching interest in the minority gay population in Uganda.

Uganda's foremost referral hospital remains a death trap after 30 years of Museveni's rule

Uganda’s foremost referral hospital remains a death trap after 30 years of Museveni’s rule

Museveni is hopeless where the country’s health issues are concerned as his disinterest in Uganda’s public health facilities and total disregard for the welfare of Uganda’s medical staff has illustrated over the past 30 years.

We must not think only of ourselves as we go to the polls. Museveni thus doesn’t deserve to be returned to power on account of his criminal neglect for the healthcare of Ugandans that are not his ministers, his family or sycophants. If in 30 years he has shown scant interest in the health of Ugandans, leaving up to 6,000 women to die in child-birth each year for instance, why should he care about minority LGBT health concerns in his dotage?

As has happened so successfully in Kenya, the gay community in Uganda has to position itself strategically to make sure that whoever is in power after the 2016 elections takes LGBT health matters seriously. That is the next frontier in the struggle – to ensure that HIV/Aids and other preventable/treatable diseases don’t destroy the LGBT community and, by extension, the rest of the country.

Yours truly will thus not recommend that any Ugandan gay man or woman votes for Yoweri Museveni in 2016.

Vote wisely when you go to the polls in February 2016.

UNAA Elects Monday Atigo 2015/17 president 3

Monday Atigo

Monday Atigo

As the dust settles on UNAA and UNAA Causes’ competing events (see yours truly’s overview of these Ugandan organizations’ ugly clash here), it has emerged that UNAA has elected a new president. He is called Monday Atigo and he replaces Brian Kwesiga whom he has been deputy to for the last two years.

From the luxury of distance, it seems right to presume to write Mr. Atigo an open letter.

Dear Mr. Atigo:

Congratulations on your ascendancy to the top leadership of UNAA, an organization that we all must admit has done immensely well in the past 27 years to bring together Diasporan Ugandans of all tribes and hues in one place for three days.

The disagreements notwithstanding, it is a good thing that UNAA has a new leader if only because it helps bring a new face and, hopefully, perspective to the proceedings.

With that in mind, it is close to the bone to say it but unless it is addressed, UNAA’s future risks being engulfed by the past at a time when it has a chance to wipe the slate clean and move forward as a united organization.

Leadership

First off, your predecessor’s stewardship of UNAA has been an unmitigated disaster. Brian Kwesiga presided over  the most caustic and ruinous atmosphere around the organization that anyone has seen in 27 years. The eventual splitting of the organization into two was the final nail in the coffin of what can only be reasonably viewed as an abject failure of leadership.

While the renting asunder of the organization can be placed at all sorts of doors, the fish rots from the head and so Mr. Kwesiga must take full responsibility for the management fiasco that he has handed you to clean up. If his term of office were a fish, Mr. Kwesiga should wish to throw it back if he were honest enough with himself.

Way forward

Your first and most critical job is to reunite the organization. The issues dividing UNAA and UNAA Causes are not that great if personal egos are set aside and a constructive eye is cast over what makes UNAA great which is Ugandans coming together as one. You don’t have a lot of time to fashion a reconciliation because, of course, you also have to start looking at organizing UNAA 2016 before you send out your acceptance message. The bottom line, however, is that you cannot ever claim to have been successful as president of UNAA if September 2016 comes around and the two organizations are not one again, singing from the same hymn sheet. Reunifying UNAA must therefore be your be-all-end-all initial assignment.

Money

UNAA Causes has happened, charging less for more, in very expensive New York City. How they have managed to do it is worth looking at as the perennial complaints from attendees have been about lack of fiscal transparency. One has no evidence one way or the other, but if UNAA Causes hosted San Diego at the drop of a hat in 2014, with about 400 attendees and came away with no reported debt, it stands to reason that this convention can be hosted successfully and money left over for developmental and/or charitable causes when it is a unified movement of 1000+ people, doesn’t it?

Politics

While politics is part and parcel of any organization, UNAA seems to have veered to the extreme of soliciting funding from the Government of Uganda and turning a part of the proceedings into a hustings for Ugandan politicians. With Diaspora Ugandans supporting the Ugandan economy to the tune of more than $500m annually, it’s rather clear who needs who more. It thus beggars the question why UNAA should ask for or accept a single cent from a government that cannot put medicines in hospitals or pay teachers a decent salary.

Ugandan politicians must thus not be invited to an event they need more than it needs them. If they wish, they should pay their way, and attend like anyone else without being given top billing or preferential treatment.

Finally Mr. Monday Atigo:

We accept that you have inherited a mess. You, however, have accepted the poisoned chalice and must now show that you are capable of drinking from it and staying alive. Humbling yourself, listening more than you talk, going the extra mile to compromise, refusing to accept failure, and smiling along the entire way may not come amiss.

Oh, and get yourself a Twitter account. It seems utterly remiss for any leader not to have one in 2015.

Good luck.

The Solution to Uganda’s (Africa’s?) Democratic Deficit

Political commentators are tiptoeing around the solution to the democratic deficit in Uganda and most of sub-Saharan Africa – understandably so since it is politically incorrect to admit what needs to be done.

Until a person is informed well enough, it is dangerous to give him/her responsibility for anyone else, much less him/herself. It is why parents are expected to look after their children in the home till the age of 18 or so. Kids are kids and their parents must make decisions for them, only gradually relenting as their charges grow older, else you have bedlam in the household.

So it must be with the African voting masses. It is, for instance, incongruous that someone as knowledgeable, educated, well-traveled and intelligent as me has his leaders chosen by illiterate, uniformed, non-tax-paying rural dwellers simply because they make up 70% of the voting bloc. But that 70% is all Uganda’s cynical politicians have to appeal to with a bar of soap, a poorly constructed dirt road, pretense at education in the form of Universal Primary Education (a potentially freeing but poorly executed, half-baked education initiative in Uganda that provides unsound education for everyone who uses it) and a catchy jingle via text messaging.

Please note that my rant excludes rural dwellers that make a decent living from farming etc, and pay taxes.

City and town dwellers, blue-collar, middle and upper class people (20-30% of Uganda’s voting population) pay the nation’s taxes and so we should be the ones to choose who the leader of the country is. Villagers spend on average barely 1/10 of 1% of what we do on anything, meaning that even their consumption levels are inconsequential to Uganda’s economy. In addition, villagers usually depend on us for their own sustenance through the remittances we send them because their subsistence maize crop has failed, their 10th kid’s dysentery is playing up, or the 35-year-old son who’s never put in a decent day’s work in his life is days away from the grave due to his chronic alcoholism.

The 70% are thus comparatively irrelevant to the productive sector of Uganda’s economy. Yet they hold the numerical advantage, and their ignorance makes them easy targets to manipulate by tired, cynical, corrupt, megalomaniacal politicians, and so they continue voting back in miscreants and incompetents on account of receiving a tin of paraffin and a tawdry tee-shirt with a politician’s mug shot on it.

It is an utter disgrace that my informed intellect and tax-paying clout is deemed to be at par at the ballot box with the parasitic masses who contribute nothing to the national coffers. Until all Ugandans are educated to the level that makes them informed enough, people like me should be given the vote to decide who the country’s president and parliamentarians should be. That would leave the masses with plenty of time to choose their village representatives (RDCs, LCIs etc) because those work at the level these people understand. Whoever wants to be able to vote at a higher level must get informed, get a trade and pay taxes.

David Bahati’s financial woes resolved!

Museveni has delivered Bahati's salvation where prayers failed!

In naming him minister, Museveni has delivered Bahati’s salvation where prayers failed!

Barely four months after he was elevated to State Minister, David Bahati, he of the infamous anti-gay bill, has had his financial woes resolved!

You might recall that yours truly told you that Uganda’s Yoweri Museveni had promoted Bahati in order to shut him up over his anti-gay boat-rocking.

Now, not only has Bahati been made to shut up, his financial problems have also been solved for him due to the fact that he is now a minister and can pull all sorts of strings to save his hide.

Congratulations Mr. Bahati. Now, how can I become a minister? I, too, am tired of this albatross of debt I grapple with on a daily basis.

Museveni receives David Bahati’s head on a platter 7

Anyone who underestimates the political astuteness of Uganda’s president, Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, makes a critical mistake.

We have just seen the old man of Uganda’s politics, now in power for 29 years and counting, outmaneuver and put his erstwhile nemesis, David Bahati, exactly where he wants him – close, very close.

 

With divine intervention unable to help him with his crippling debts, Bahati has succumbed to Museveni's inducement

With divine intervention unable to dispel his financial incompetence, Bahati has succumbed to Museveni’s inducements

Museveni has just made the Honorable David Bahati, Member of Parliament for Ndorwa West, he of the infamous Bahati Nazi Anti-Homosexuality Bill that has caused the president so many sleepless nights over the last 5 years, Minister of State for Planning.

The title itself, or that Bahati will have nothing to do – no one in Museveni’s cabinet, other than his wife, has anything significant to do without the president’s express nod – is of no consequence. It is the thinking behind Bahati’s elevation that matters.

While he dabbled in evangelical zealotry and walked around Gung-ho waving a Nazi sex bill President Museveni has never made a secret of disliking, Hon. David Bahati was also racking up huge debts whose servicing left him virtually unable to feed himself past pay-day. Recently, Bahati’s financial woes culminated in ignominy when it was revealed in the press that he was being sued by a Savings Cooperative for 106m/= ($37,800).

Despite his pretense to personal purity and godliness, the whole world now knew that Bahati was nothing other than a profligate, hypocritical, two-bit, vulnerable politician with the financial mind of an ignoramus – just like all the rest of them. Most critically, Bahati was against the wall and sinking fast under a mountain of debt owed to all sorts of lenders, including loan sharks.

Which is how Museveni, who had no doubt been waiting for the chance to pick off his pontificating nemesis, finally found his opportunity.

Elevating Bahati to a minister, albeit one without a clear job description, should earn Bahati a higher salary and open doors to for him to use his office to conduct personally lucrative deals, thereby alleviating his indebtedness. Perhaps he might even become rich if he plays the cards that come with his ministerial office right.

But most critically, and this is the real reason for Museveni picking Bahati, being in cabinet means that one has to agree to collective cabinet responsibility. In Uganda, the president is the decision-maker in cabinet, with ministers just mere poodles to do as he wishes. Effectively the president is the cabinet. Yoweri Museveni thus has Bahati exactly where he wants him – unable to speak out against the president’s wishes the way he has done with his anti-gay bill. This is a case of bringing one’s friends close, and one’s enemies even closer.

Financial penury has finally driven David Bahati into Yoweri Museveni’s lair.

You are not going to see David Bahati running around, shooting his mouth off like a loose cannon on a rolling deck on anything the president doesn’t approve of as long as he remains Museveni’s minister.

As was the result when Speaker of the House, Rebecca Kadaga, picked up her political racquet to try and outhit Museveni, the President has cruelly exposed the incoming Minister of State for Planning.

Quiet please, players are ready. First set 6-1 to Mr. President. Second set Mr. Bahati to serve.

Uganda’s Parliament in move to legalize cunnilingus 1

Even in Uganda where one expects ineptitude in high places as a matter of course, the latest attempt by Uganda’s legislators to bring back the Bahati Nazi Anti-Gay Bill to the floor of the House through false pretenses is staggering in its incompetence.

Draft Bill

In what they may have thought was a crafty stratagem, they have retouched the language to call the bill “The prohibition of unnatural sexual practices …” But what they have ended up with is a cowardly, incondite piece of writing that fails muster just on basic English language interpretation.

Take their definition of a sexual organ: “sexual organ” means vagina or penis. (italics mine)

So far so good. But then the honorable legislators have defined a sexual act as “the penetration of the vagina, mouth or anus, however slight, of any person, by a sexual organ.”

Draft Bill 2So if you have heterosexual sex, and you penetrate the vagina, however slightly, with your tongue or fingers, what is that supposed to be given that the only two sexual organs the honorable members who have drawn up this latest draft bill have accommodated are the vagina and penis? Isn’t the inference here, therefore, that one is free to penetrate the vagina or perform oral sex on the penis with the tongue/fingers since they are not sexual organs and so to use them during sex cannot be defined as a sexual act?

Vulnerable? Ugandan musician Buchaman (real name Mark Bugembe)

Vulnerable? Ugandan musician Buchaman (real name Mark Bugembe) would be deemed incompetent to decide who he can have sex with because of his physical disability

It gets more abysmal when you consider their list of vulnerable persons with whom it will be illegal to have ‘unnatural sexual practices’ with: “vulnerable persons includes persons with disabilities, children and the elderly,” the Parliamentarians aver.

People with the following disabilities are about to be condemned to being too stupid to decide what kind of consensual sex they can have with other adults: anyone blind in one or both eyes, the hard of hearing and/or deaf, the physically disabled and so on and so forth.

This particular clause is especially offensive to yours truly for a very personal reason; I know of a physically disabled man, have known him since 1994, who is easily one of the most independent, single-minded, thoughtful, proud, principled people I have ever come across in my entire life. He possesses all his mental faculties and has proved again and again to any condescending able-bodied person around that he doesn’t need charity or pity. Uganda’s Parliamentarians, however, would tar him with the scarlet letter of “vulnerable persons.”

The legislators try to hide their Nazi tendencies but trip themselves with the clause that seeks to remove sexual consent from adults. In a cowardly attempt to hide their real intent – legislating against homosexuality – they do not mention that word once in their 5-page draft. It’s a dud of a tactic that goes down like a lead balloon – showing the entire effort up for the tawdry, backward-looking, illiterate, half-baked draft that doesn’t deserve the time yours truly has spent on it already.

But this is Uganda where to expect even mere mediocrity from our lawmakers is asking for too much.

Museveni lays money trap for Uganda’s Parliament 2

Uganda’s president, Yoweri Museveni, has laid out his stall in yet another bid to defeat Uganda’s Parliament over the Anti Homosexuality Bill (AHB).

Having bullied Uganda’s lawmakers in 2010 and succeeded only long enough for Canada’s John Baird to upend his efforts in 2012, Museveni has returned to the tried and tested antidote to politicians who refuse to tow his preferred line.

Money, money, money
Must be funny
In the rich man’s world
Money, money, money
Always sunny
In the rich man’s world
Aha-ahaaa
All the things I could do
If I had a little money
It’s a rich man’s world (ABBA)

His rambling argument for trying to re-position the anti-gay debate is as confused as it is confusing but it doesn’t really matter. Amidst the contradictions and obfuscations, the president has wielded the weapon he has  used successfully to quieten his restive Parliamentary caucus in the past:

Money.

With Uganda’s Parliamentary elections about 15 months away, Museveni knows that a of Members of Parliament are desperately broke, with their necks in the noose for millions of shillings they owe to loan sharks. They thus have no money to run their campaigns. Some of those loan sharks have the president on speed dial, and vice versa. It stands to reason that the president has a Mikado-like list of members of parliament (MPs) who are hanging on by their fingernails on account of crippling loans they owe to voracious money lenders.  He also knows that the last election campaign was funded by donor money, most of it used to prop up his National Resistance Movement (NRM) campaign.

It is manufacturing and trade that has completely transformed countries like South Korea, China, India, Mauritius, in just one generation. This is what the NRM meant when, in point No 5 of our 10-Point Programme, we were talking of “building an integrated, independent and self-sustaining economy”. We cannot do that without trade. Those countries that neglect that fail. (Museveni)

The 2016 election will also need money, billions of it. The President doesn’t need to tell his caucus that this money has traditionally come from America and Europe – precisely the places where the backlash against the AHB have been strongest.

IMAG1024_1By bringing China and the emerging Asian tigers into the equation, he is telling his MPs that they have to make a choice. China will fund infrastructural projects but is not in the habit of handing out money that they know is easily fungible to also fund political campaigns. America and Europe, however, have a rich history of doing exactly that. Moralize on bedroom matters at the expense of Uganda’s economy. The sting in the tail is that any MP willing to make that argument must do so in the forthcoming elections without the president’s (donor) support.

It worked in 2010, with the 2011 polls looming. Parliament passed the bill in 2013 when there was nothing for them to lose. Now there is – re-election in 2016 which, without Museveni, means certain political death for many MPs in Uganda. Even if so many parliamentarians weren’t financially against the wall, they need the president’s patronage to get re-elected since, even after 30 years, he is still the biggest decisive element in Uganda’s politics.

Museveni is saying he is the key to the overflowing largess needed to help return MPs to their seats. Back me on this or risk being unable to have funding for your election campaigns.

It is now with all of us following the Court ruling. What is the way forward? (Yoweri Museveni)

Indeed it is now up to the ruling NRM parliamentary caucus. They can continue trying to cut off their noses to spite their faces, or they can fall  behind the president and abandon their efforts to return the AHB to Parliament, thereby improving their chances of financing their re-election.

These LGBT Americans are totally tone deaf! 5

If there is anything you eventually learn about far left or right leaning ideologues, it is that there is little point in talking to them. They have already made up their minds that they are correct, it is their God-given will to save the world, and no amount of talk will sway them from their divine mission.

And so it is, it seems, with the brigade of condescending American LGBT do-gooders who have elected themselves to fight Uganda’s (and Africa’s) gay battles whether we want them to or not.

It doesn’t matter if it is a gay African activist, someone on the ground living the gay life or angels from heaven blowing bugles beseeching them to shelve their cordite. These people will act as they please, damn it.

Their latest reckless salvo is aimed at Uganda’s president, Yoweri Museveni who is due in Texas around now. Reports suggest that his host hotel has canceled his reservation “over gay rights abuses.”

Really? Which gay rights abuses do they attribute to Yoweri Museveni, one would like to ask these [usually faceless] people? This gay man lives in Uganda and really doesn’t know of any.

To aim this sort of action at Uganda’s Museveni is pointless, militantly foolish, over-the-top and, totally counter-productive since, whether you believe it or not and his motivations notwithstanding, Museveni has been a godsend to the gay community in Uganda over the past 4 or so years. For starters, Museveni did NOT pass the anti-gay bill, Parliament did! Neither did he re-introduce it in Parliament after the courts annulled it!

This sort of ill-advised, patronizing, unilateral action (I bet you hard cash the gay community in Uganda didn’t sanction it) will simply play into the cynical politics of Uganda and Museveni can return home to show how ‘colonial’ Americans disrespected him over gays in Uganda, something the anti-gay chorus in Uganda will lap up as they strain at the lead in trying to pass the anti-gay bill again. This is thus a replay of the needless interference that Canada’s John Baird indulged in in 2012 which, likely, led to the signing of the bill after a four year chill.

There is thus nothing for it but for one to ask the Dallas Voice which seems to have started all this:

Which genocidal gay rights abuses, pray, do you attribute to Uganda’s Yoweri Kaguta Museveni?

This gay man living in Uganda doesn’t know of any.

Over to you Dallas Voice. Or anyone with evidence of it.

Is that a deathly silence one hears?

Gay Uganda calls the political tune 1

Museveni: after signing away his legacy

A dour-looking Museveni: after signing away a huge chunk of his campaign funding on February 24th 2014

Most of his supporters won’t get it just yet, but Yoweri Kaguta Museveni lost a huge chunk of his political credibility February 24, 2014.

In the same week that Museveni invited journalists and diplomats to his palatial State House to sign a bill he had lambasted and ridiculed in equal measure, 24-year-old Herbert Mpiima succumbed to a rare bone cancer which could have been caught and checked – had the president and Uganda’s Parliament had the presence of mind to focus their energies on Uganda’s moribund health care system as they did on fighting with themselves over the Bahati anti-gay bill, now a nullified law.

Ssemusota guli mu ntamu ... If you don't remove the snake gingerly, you break the pot. But if you don't break the pot, you won't remove the snake

Ssemusota guli mu ntamu … If you don’t remove the snake very gingerly, you break the pot.

The intellectual confusion, the naked politicking, the chasing of shadows and the shifting sands continue unabated – nearly seven months since the president signed the Anti-Gay-Bill into law. At this rate, one can be forgiven for assuming that homosexuals make up 32,670,000 souls of Uganda’s 34,000,000 people. Estimates however put the gay population at just 500,000 (1%) of Uganda’s population.

The latest public hand-wringing came two days ago when Uganda’s legislators were again summoned into the President’s presence to be lectured about the law recently killed by Uganda’s Constitution Court. Knowing that his previous tactics of bullying and arm-twisting wouldn’t do, the president this time opted for local wisdom, telling his Parliamentarians that legislating in haste against homosexuality had become like a snake in a clay cooking pot – if you clumsily tried to remove it, you would break the pot.

Ssemusota guli mu ntamu is a well-known adage from Buganda, the richest, largest, most populous part of the country, and it is used widely to refer to matters that are extremely delicate, which need to be handled very carefully.

Really? 99% of a people whose country is independent and proud have to walk on egg shells over a matter that concerns just 1% of the entire population?!

Frank Mugisha & Kasha Nabagesera

Frank Mugisha & Kasha Nabagesera

That’s where Jacqueline Kasha Nabagesera and Frank Mugisha come in.

Yes, there have been others but Nabagesera and Mugisha are really the face of an international campaign so successful that Yoweri Museveni’s political fortunes are now the focus, rather than homosexuals or the Anti Homosexuality Bill/Law for that matter.

Can the president sign a law he already knows is foolish, formed in bad faith, enacted without a quorum, impossible to police and get away with it? The answer to that one has already been shown to be … no!

Can the president who is on record rubbishing an anti-gay bill, and chiding his own people for their blindness to the fact that homosexuality and homosexuals have always been an integral part of the African fabric, also turn around and tell homosexuals that they have lost the argument? The answer to that one is clearly … no!

Can a president who depends so heavily on western donor money for his political survival thumb his nose at those same donors in order to curry favor with his rebellious Parliamentary caucus? The answer to that has also already been answered in the negative.

So what is the president of this independent country that will not be dictated to by America or Britain to do? Well, it seems he will have to return to the donors, ask for Aid money not to be turned off while at the same time letting his minions argue that the country doesn’t need Aid money. Once the Aid money is turned back on, it can then be used to buy off Parliamentarians most of whom are deeply in debt to loan sharks who have the president’s phone number on speed dial.

Hopefully, pouring donor money at the problem will do the trick. If it doesn’t, Museveni’s political plans could be torn to tatters by the movement Nabagesera and Mugisha started. If it does, Nabagesera and Mugisha will have helped Museveni extend his stay in power.

They likely don’t know it yet, but Nabagesera and Mugisha have Yoweri Museveni’s political destiny and legacy in their hands – whichever way the homosexuality question is settled … with a little help from very influential friends abroad of course.

Where does all this leave Uganda’s anti-homosexuality law?

What anti-homosexuality law?