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Kakwenzarism: How to speak or write about lawlessness in Uganda in 2024


Kakwenzarism: How to speak or write about lawlessness in Uganda in 2024

By Godwin Muwanguzi

Whereas it is a sophisticated business to advocate for human rights in Uganda, a few people are hitched to diligently writing and speaking about the inequities that have infested the NRM paralysed system.

Unfortunately, Ugandans have reduced themselves to cowards who think it is not their business to speak against the injustice bred by tyranny, as long as they have uninterrupted sleep and yam to eat.

A few days ago, while sharing with a friend about how Uganda has swiftly become an infertile shamba under the NRM regimen, he said that if one wants to live longer, then political comments, however genuine, should never come out of their mouth.

Not that my friend doesn’t care about Uganda, but he finds it illogical for one to be abducted or stung by the regime’s wasps for fighting for other people’s rights or calling out corrupt leaders who feast on the national resources.

He is not alone—he is just a replica of the many Ugandans whom the system has suppressed to the core, and now that blood comes from their noses, they avoid a trajectory that would bring trouble to their doorstep before their time.

But the argument is void—for a government that is descending spares no one—whether you speak or don’t. When they are hungry for human flesh and thirsty for fresh blood, they look at everyone as their prey, especially when you are not part of their hoodlumism; but sometimes, they even prey on their own.

Now it is incontrovertible that the only way we can bring back sanity to the Government is through sedition—we have spoken enough, and it seems as though we are playing a flute to the deaf, who are not dancing because they can’t hear us.

But are we that insane to wrestle against the NRM regime in this age of enlightenment, knowing Mr. Museveni and his government are masterminds of violence? We cannot go to war with people who have lost touch with humanness; the same people who justify the need for one’s death, because of their political disparities.

However, there is a way—when men learn to shoot without missing, the bird must learn to fly without perching. If we went to the streets to exhibit our grievances through peaceful demonstrations, the army and police, which are indubitably partisan, would drown us in bullets and teargas as has been the case, and the president from the statehouse, would say with a grin: We crushed the pigs. Of course, whoever stands up for their rights is a pig.

So, we are going to sing the Chimurenga music of struggle, which originates from Zimbabwe, and we shall blend it with Kakwenzarism—this would be an appropriate dose for those who trample on our rights and scavenge on our country’s resources.

Local Rhodesians birthed the Chimurenga music circa the 1970s during their scramble for independence, and Thomas Mapfumo, a Shona musician and one of the most lethal revolutionaries of both the Rhodesian and Robert Mugabe’s government championed the music genre as a means of resistance against subjugation.

In the 1980s, after Rhodesia had become Zimbabwe (having gained independence on April 18, 1980), Bob Marley visited the newly independent country at the invitation of his fellow revolutionist, Thomas Mapfumo. During his public performance, Bob Marley backed his comrade’s music, which the oppressor had perceived as subversive. He said, “Music is the biggest gun because the oppressed cannot afford weapons.”

Since then, Zimbabwean peasants have used the Chimurenga music to describe a struggle for human rights, political dignity, and social justice, and whenever they are dissatisfied, they sing Chimurenga songs to convey their message.

For Kakwenzarism, is a coinage from author Kakwenza’s name. Kakwenza, a writer and activist, uses sarcasm to describe not only his tormentors but also incompetent public servants, and the results have always been corporeal; his words pierce the perpetrators of human rights like needles.

On that account, we should adopt the Chimurenga music and Kakwenzarism in 2024 to portray our malaise. We should call our leaders for who they are—a dictator should be a dictator. For instance, we could baptize a minister who swindles public money meant for hospitals and schools a fool.

An army commander who inspects the abduction of citizens would be a certified idiot; members of parliament who support bills that suppress common Ugandans would be bum-lickers, and we would call a sycophant who justifies the government’s many atrocities Mr. Warthog.

Musicians should sing songs that give the oppressed hope, and activists should speak gravely against state violence, call perpetrators scavengers, dumb, thieves, and scoundrels. After all, verbal violence is the only gun we have since we are too sane to resort to the NRA tactics of gun crime.

 Godwin Muwanguzi

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