Monday, January 23, 2006

The whining class

I have just read an article on how middle class Ugandans love nothing better than whine about how messed up everything is and yet they can't be bothered to do something to change the situation. The author, Martin Lwanga, says

"One of the favourite past times of the African middle class in general, and Uganda in particular, is the love to sit down and whine and moan about the plight of their nation. Many of us in the middle class love nothing more than lambasting politicians and distancing ourselves from the evil circle. "

This article article made a lot of sense because I have noticed, over the years, that the people that make the most noise about Uganda's problems, corruption, bad roads, lousy education system, etc are also the least proactive lot. I leave in a housing estate and everytime I am whiling the evening away at the neighbourhood pub, somebody is bound to be complaining that something or the other is not right in the estate. Yet when the regular weekend tenants or LC meetings are held, to discuss some of the complaints, the attendance is so poor they are often called off. Everybody is either indoors nursing a hangover, digesting that fine Sunday lunch, waiting for the rerun of Smallville that they missed earlier in the week or out somewhere.
At the national level it is the same, as Mr. Lwanga put it,

"Right now Uganda is going through an election exercise but a great many of us in the educated class are not registered voters and on election day will casually sit back to watch CNN and wait for the results late in the evening to filter in from shamba boys. "

We (alas, truth be told I belong to this group) are mostly the same chaps who complain no end about how the current government is killing us with taxes, high fuel prices.... You'd think we would be the most eager to change things. And some of us have the audacity to complain about Museveni being kept in power by votes from "ignorant" peasants that have no knowledge of the country's "real" problems.

I found this rather interesting too

"Somehow many of our friends in the diaspora, having taken their skills to the developed world, expect to visit and find things miraculously running just as well in the nation which they robbed of their talent and skills."

It reminded me of this post , which would be just as meaningful if it were about Ugandans in the diaspora.

Enough said, I am going to vote for Ssematimba as Mayor.

..ooops.. I didn't register to vote.



Carlo said...

Firstly, being personally acquainted with online banking, telephone banking and whatever sort of banking, it has been my experience that the only way the banker will know your details is if you use your bank card (debit card, visa card, atm card, whichever) or give them your pin number. and even then, they only know your details and not how much money you have (or don't have) in your account. plus, with so many clients a day, who's going to sit and remember the cute guy's pin number? there are lots of encrypted protective thingies (i'm not good with computer language) to protect the bank's customers. secondly, shame on you for not registering to vote!

baz said...

Who said revolutions are carried out by the elite classes?

Iwaya said...

that article was something, i agree. i wonder though if the author himself is going to vote? i mean the author of the article.

Degstar said...

so, because i am registered to vote and i don't watch Smallville and i do protest at government muck-ups - y'all saw the picture of the ministry of finance sedan burning in downtown kampala when warren was arrested - does dat mean i am no longer part of the ugandan middle class?

Degstar said...

by the way, people like you are the reason Sseya ever became Mayor and Ssenseko Kulubya doesnt even bother campaigning after announcing his candidature - he knows you wont show up on feb 23 anyway