If you were having coffee with me, I would be glad to have you over in this socially distanced corner of the internet. Am I the only one who finds it weird how people are just throwing events and meetups then affixing the words *socially distanced* to promotional flyers…
Irregardless (yes it’s a word probably one that should be used in polite vocabulary but I wrote about that here Of Irregardless) of the rising in Covid cases no one is really socially distancing with masks half-worn and there’s chatter of another lockdown as COVID cases start have been averaging 10 new cases everyday in the past week. A school had 100 learners test positive for COVID and the school has been locked down, a polytechnic college also shut down in the past week when students started testing positive for COVID.
If you were having coffee with me, I still think that our government powers-that-be should have spent the rest of the year fully planning for the dreaded Rona virus than trying to rush into opening for a crash course third term, which is probably going to result in very poor academic gain. Today teachers are expected to have resumed work after over 50 days of an incapacitation industrial action.
Last week civil servants got awarded a 41% salary increment and teachers unions have reluctantly agreed to go back to work. Hopefully sanity returns to the classroom. And incase you think that increase sounds like a lot then how about when you consider that toll gate fees have gone up by 100%
If you were having coffee with me I would tell you that the government launched a new blueprint for the economy the National Development Strategy 1 in which over the next 5 years, the president says that the government will:
•Create 760,000 new jobs
•Bring inflation down to between 3-7% by 2025
•Expand the economy by 5% year on year
While its good to have goals, year after year a cocktail of measurements with all sorts of ideals are launched and whose success lets just say remains punctuated by its absence. Writing more about them might result in my arrest for trying to subvert a constitutionally government.. I kid you not.
If you were having coffee with me I would tell you that the journalist Hopewell Chin’ono who was out on bail on charges of inciting people to violence and then arrested for violating bail conditions which was then charged as obstructing justice (for tweeting a tweet on Twitter) and then denied bail on grounds of propensity to commit crime was finally released on bail after a High Court appeal.
The High Court Justice found that the Magistrate had misruled and was wrong to say that Hopewell has a propensity to commit offences when he has not yet gotten a guilty verdict. Bail conditions carry the additional note that Hopewell not to use his Twitter account to disseminate messages that undermine the course of justice.
While some celebrated his release others argued about he should not have been arrested in the first place. Hopewell who has become a symbol for those oppressed and persecuted by the system is undaunted by the arrest if not not even more resolved to expose corruption.
If you were having coffee with me, I would tell you that beyond our borders in Uganda Bobi Wine a presidential candidate in the upcoming elections was also released on bail after he had been arrested at rally and later charged of violating COVID regulations as stated in The Public Health Act. His arrested sparked protests which resulted in the security forces reacting with lethal force and the death of at least 28 people according to the police statement while a police pathologist is quoted to have said they had counted 37 bodies by Thursday morning.
Security Minister Elly Tumwine told reporters that “police have a right to shoot you and kill you if you reach a certain level of violence”.
*Update: for a cyclist’s eye view of cycling through the streets of Kampala on the night Bobi Wine was arrested check out Cycling On A Night Of Terror
If you were having coffee with me I would tell you a spot of good news, our broadcasting authority has finally licenced broadcasting licences to six television stations, hopefully soon we will have six extra television channels other than just the one which I never tune into because the content is unflattering and the propaganda ridiculous.
Of course some people have pointed out how the licences have been granted to particular groups on some obscure patronage lines like how Rusununguko media is owned by the military and ZTN is an extension of state publishing, so the content is not likely to be as independent nor as diverse as one would want but instead a multiplication of the same old… Maybe they will prove us wrong, I hope they will prove us wrong maybe I might even start paying for a TV licence.
If you were having coffee with me, I would ask you if you know the story behind the iconic track The Lion Sleeps Tonight? Check out my last post to see the journey of Mbube to Wimoweh to The Lion Sleeps tonight and the cultural entanglement and copyright swindlement and other shenanigans of the music industry…
Thanks for visiting whats been going on in your neck of the woods.