So, August has come red hot for me. I became (truthfully) 28! Hooorrraaayyy! Officially, that makes me old enough to possibly become at least the #NextWHODirectorGeneral for African region (sic). As usual, my new year has started, as I don’t follow the usual calendar which wrongly suggests the end of the year in December. According to me, some one’s birthday is actually the 1st January of their new year. Nevertheless, like many superstars, I have already made my new year’s resolutions:-upon which I will henceforth take as the baseline indicators so as to conduct an outcome evaluation at the end of the year. Good luck to me J
Fatigued and tired of tiredness herself from the bloody 16 hour Nairobi- Mbarara bus ride, I hurled myself into the PhD Student Workshop organised by Mbarara University of Science & Technology’s Institute of Interdisciplinary Training & Research, University of Rwanda’s Centre for gender studies & Centre for Conflict Management on 4th August 2014. The workshop looked at traditional justice as a preventive approach, discussed socioeconomic transitions, Memorizations with processes of remembering and forgetting, Reconciliation and criminal justice. Interestingly, the workshop had close to 15 international interns from the NORDIC countries, 3 staff from University of Rwanda and around 10 Ugandans. I couldn’t easily ascertain the number of Ugandans, as they’d keep coming and going out of the workshop L
It was very insightful to hear from the horse’ mouth, how the #Gachacha and #Gamba coupled by #Ndyomunyarwanda innovations have tried to improve the solidarity of Rwandese identity. For a country whose dark past saw approximately 500,000 women raped, 800,000-1,000,000 killed, you couldn’t help but imagine the extent of all kinds of trauma existing. But with the strengthening and enabling of local capacities to support the central government in implementing (among the many but) health-focussed policies:-there is clearly a big butt of a difference between the two countries. More evidence based studies need to be conducted on the impact of the 64% of Rwanda’s Member of Parliaments being females:-a world record in fact.
To even ask ‘Can Rwanda’s traditional justice approach help #Uganda achieve its Millennium Development Goal Targets’ would seem archaic as we’re only less than 10 months towards the MDG deadlines. In a country like Uganda whose Kampala consensus of the ‘freedom to talk everything you want to say’ and that includes #GavumentiEtuyambe syndrome, it will be as hard as diamond for such a society to work towards improving its own and community quality of life. Rwanda, which is using the ‘Socioeconomic empowerment’ model, consequently reducing the root cause of everything ranging from corruption through spitting/littering on the road to poverty, local communities especially women (who are sadly ranked as the poorest sex) will definitely be able to afford transport to deliver in health centres, possibly buy a book and pen for the infant.
I cant sign out without highlighting a key issue of the workshop: The #RwandanIdentity and the #UgandanIdentity. In Rwanda, so the delegates say, prior to the horrific and much publicized #RwandaGenocide1994, Rwandese were getting Identity Cards showing their ethnicity! That was day light suicide-in the making. Currently, the Identity cards show only their country: There seems to be a significant reduction in the Tsutsism and the Hutism previously fueled by the length of a person’s nose. In Uganda, (possibly why H.E M7 is focusing on patriotism), Its really embarrassing to hear even on TV, Radios, Newspapers and even unprofessional comedians making jokes of the ethnic diversity in Uganda. The Itesots are like this…Baganda…Bakiga…Batooro, Bahima, etc. We also have, I don’t know how many Kingdoms who are struggling for recognition: often fighting hard to share the never-coming national budget cake with their poor subordinates’ souls. As a result, these kingdoms have successfully refused to embrace government health and development programmes, and sometimes daring to do a #UgandaGenocide as has been (and still is) the case of the #RwenzururuKingdom. Shall I live to see the time in Uganda where you wont be asking my bloody ethnic/ tribe affiliation? We can only hope, the current young population will embrace the #UgandaNessInMe to solve our own health and development mess or else we shall be E-messe-d.