Friday, April 25

Rais anakemea “wanasiasa wanaomtukana Nyerere na Karume” amekaa kimya matusi kwa Jaji Warioba na kauli za Lukuvi

NI dhahiri sasa kuwa mjadala wa Katiba mpya, hususan kipengele cha muundo wa Muungano, unaelekea kulipeleka taifa mahali pabaya. Japokuwa dalili za Bunge Maalumu la Katiba linaweza kuishia kuwa jukumu ghali kwa walipakodi masikini, hasa baada ya kusikika madai ya baadhi ya wajumbe wa Bunge hilo kuwa posho ya shilingi 300,000 kwa siku haitoshi, lakini Watanzania wengi walikuwa na imani kwamba ‘upepo huo mbaya’ ungepita na hali ingekuwa shwari.

Hata hivyo, kadiri siku zinavyozidi kwenda ndivyo hali inavyozidi kuwa mbaya. Kinacholeta wasiwasi zaidi 
kwa sasa ni kuibuka kwa dalili za ubaguzi wa waziwazi, sambamba na jitihada hatari za kumwaga petroli kwenye moto kwa kuingiza udini kwa nguvu kwenye siasa.

Lakini pasi ‘kuuma maneno’ naomba nielekeze lawama zangu kwa Rais Jakaya Kikwete na chama chake - CCM. Pamoja na wasiwasi uliokuwepo awali, kwamba huenda Rais Kikwete angeendeleza desturi iliyoota mizizi ndani ya CCM kwamba kila wazo lililoanzia vyama vya upinzani (kama hilo la umuhimu wa kuwa na Katiba mpya) ni baya, na hivyo angekwamisha uwezekano wa kupata Katiba mpya, alitushtua wengi alipoonyesha dalili za kuwa amepania kwa dhati kuweka historia kwa kufanikisha suala hilo muhimu.

Mambo yalionekana kwenda vizuri licha ya jitihada za hapa na pale ndani ya CCM kulifanya suala la Katiba mpya kuwa la kiitikadi zaidi kuliko la kitaifa. Wengi mtakumbuka vijembe walivyopigwa baadhi ya viongozi wa vyama vya upinzani walipotaka kukutana na Rais Kikwete. Badala ya kupongeza kile kilichoonekana kama mwanzo mpya wa siasa za maridhiano, baadhi ya wanasiasa huko CCM waliwakebehi wapinzani kuwa wanataka kwenda Ikulu kunywa chai tu!

Dalili za mwanzo kuwa hatma ya suala la Katiba mpya ipo shakani zilianza kujichomoza zaidi baada ya Tume ya Mabadiliko ya Katiba, chini ya Jaji Joseph Warioba kuweka hadharani Rasimu ya Kwanza ya Katiba mpya, ambapo pendekezo la muundo wa Muungano wa Serikali tatu liliwekwa bayana. Taratibu, CCM, chini ya uongozi wa Kikwete, ilianza harakati za chini chini kujaribu kuingilia mchakato wa Katiba mpya, ikiwa ni pamoja na jitihada za kubinafsisha mchakato huo.

Lakini Mungu si Athumani au John, pamoja na vizingiti vya hapa na pale, hatimaye Rais Kikwete alitangaza majina ya wajumbe 201 kutoka makundi mbalimbali ya jamii, kuingia katika Bunge la Katiba. Lakini kabla ya hapo, tayari Rais Kikwete alishatangaza mkoani Mbeya wakati wa maadhimisho ya kuzaliwa kwa CCM kwamba msimamo wa chama hicho ni Serikali mbili. Japo alitangaza msimamo huo kama Mwenyekiti wa taifa wa CCM, katika mazingira ya kawaida tu, isingewezekana kuwapo kwa mitizamo tofauti kati ya Kikwete wa CCM na Kikwete Rais.

Kuanzia hapo ikawa kama ‘jini lililopo kwenye chupa’ (a genie in the bottle) limefunguliwa. Zikaanza harakati za waziwazi ‘kulazimisha’ matakwa ya chama tawala kwamba muundo wa Muungano lazima ubaki kuwa wa Serikali mbili. Mara zikapatikana taarifa kuwa CCM imetengeneza rasimu yake ya siri.
Mara tu baada ya kikao cha Bunge Maalum la Katiba kuanza, ishara kuwa hali huko mbele inaweza kuwa si shwari zikawa zinajitokeza kila kukicha. Baada ya mshikemshike wa madai ya posho, likaibuka suala la utaratibu wa kupiga kura (yaani kura zipigwe kwa usiri au uwazi.)

Lakini kwa vile tangu awali CCM walionyesha kuwekeza nguvu zao kubwa katika suala la muundo wa Muungano wakitaka Serikali mbili, suala hilo limeteka takriban kila kipengele cha Katiba mpya, na kwa bahati mbaya au makusudi, mjadala wa muundo wa Muungano unazidi kutishia umoja na mshikamano wa taifa letu.

Japo lugha za matusi na kashfa si jambo geni kwenye vikao vya Bunge la Jamhuri, hali imezidi kuwa mbaya kwenye kikao cha Bunge Maalumu la Katiba, tunasikia baadhi ya wajumbe wakiwatuhumu wenzao kuwa mashoga, huko wengine wakienda mbali na kuhoji Uafrika wa wenzao. Lakini kama nilivyobainisha hapo juu kuwa tumeshazoea matusi na lugha chafu bungeni, kuna waliokuwa na imani kuwa “wakimaliza kutukanana, watarejea kwenye suala lililowakutanisha huko Dodoma.”

Mara vikaanza kuibuka vitisho kuwa iwapo Katiba mpya itaridhia Serikali mbili, jeshi litatwaa madaraka. Na aliyeanzisha vitisho hivi si mwingine bali Rais Kikwete katika hotuba yake ya ufunguzi wa Bunge hilo la Katiba, wiki chache zilizopita.

Lakini wakati Rais Kikwete aliliongelea suala hilo katika jukwaa la kisiasa (bungeni), mmoja wa wasaidizi wake akaamua kulitoa suala hilo katika anga za siasa na kulipeleka kwenye nyumba za ibada. Hapa ninamzungumzia William Lukuvi.

Inaniwia vigumu kupata maneno stahili ya kumwelezea mwanasiasa huyo ambaye ghafla ametokea kuwa mtu mwenye kauli chafu, hatari na za kiharamia.

Huyu mtu bila aibu wala uoga amediriki kwenda kanisani na kutangaza waziwazi kuwa jeshi litaasi pindi uamuzi wa kuwa na Serikali tatu utakapopitishwa. Naomba nitamke bayana kwamba nahisi Lukuvi ana matatizo kutokana na hatua yake ya kwenda kanisani kufanya mahubiri ya kushawishi jeshi kuasi.

Lakini anayempa jeuri Lukuvi ni Rais Kikwete, kwani naye aligusia suala hilo kwenye hotuba yake ya ufunguzi wa Bunge la Katiba. Kwa hiyo anachofanya Lukuvi ni kusambaza tu ujumbe ulioanzishwa na Rais Kikwete.

Na wakati Rais Kikwete akiwakemea “wanasiasa wanaomtukana Nyerere na Karume” amekalia kimya matusi ya Lukuvi kwa Mwenyezi Mungu (naam, kutumia nyumba ya ibada kujenga chuki na kuhamasisha uasi wa jeshi ni matusi kwa Mungu.)

Ni watu wenye upeo mdogo tu watakaochukia kusikia kwamba Nyerere na Karume wana mchango katika matatizo tuliyonayo kuhusu Muungano, hasa kwa uamuzi wao wa kulifanya suala hilo kama lao binafsi bila kuangalia madhara yake miaka kadhaa ijayo.

Mara kadhaa Rais Kikwete amekuwa akiasa kuhusu athari za kuchanganya siasa na dini. Amewahi kudai kuwa kuna maadui wa nje wanaotumia suala la dini kwa minajili ya kututenganisha.

Lakini kipi cha kushangaza ilhali kwenye chaguzi kadhaa wamekuwa wakitumia nyumba za ibada kupandikiza chuki dhidi ya wapinzani wao?

Japo hainisumbui sana iwapo Katiba mpya haitopatikana, napata wasiwasi kuona uhuni wa kisiasa (political thuggery) ukihalalishwa kwa kisingizio cha ‘kuhubiri athari za Serikali tatu.’
Lakini nani wa ‘kuokoa jahazi’? Rais Kikwete anakemea wanaowatukana Nyerere na Karume, lakini anapuuza matusi ya wasaidizi wake kwa Jaji Warioba.

Nimalizie makala hii kwa kumkumbusha Rais Kikwete kwamba mwakani ataondoka madarakani na kurejea uraiani. Asipotengeneza mazingira mazuri kwake na kwa Watanzania, janga hili linalopikwa na akina Lukuvi litamwathiri naye pia.

Ni muhimu kwa Rais kuweka kando ushabiki wa kisiasa na kuchukua hatua za makusudi kuepusha nchi kutumbukia kwenye machafuko yanayochochewa na mahubiri ya ubaguzi na kuitumia dini kwa minajili ya kisiasa.

Siku 67 za mipasho, matusi bungeni

Wajumbe wa Bunge Maalum la katiba wakipinga jambo ndani ya bunge juzi  wakati Kamati namba tatu  na nne za kijadili vifungu vya rasimu ya Katiba walipokuwa wakiwasilisha ripoti zao Bungeni Dodoma juzi. Picha na Salim Shao 


Dodoma. Bunge Maalumu la Katiba linaahirishwa leo baada ya kukutana kwa siku 67 bila kupitisha hata ibara moja kati ya 240 zilizomo katika Rasimu ya Katiba.
Badala yake Bunge hilo likiongozwa na Samuel Sitta “Mzee wa Kasi na Viwango” linaahirishwa hadi Agosti, mwaka huu likiendelea kujadili Sura ya Kwanza na ya Sita zenye jumla ya Ibara 19, zinazohusu masuala yanayojenga msingi wa aina ya Muungano unaopendekezwa.
Tume ya Mabadiliko ya Katiba katika rasimu iliyowasilishwa bungeni na aliyekuwa Mwenyekiti wake, Jaji Joseph Warioba ilipendekeza muundo wa shirikisho lenye serikali tatu, pendekezo ambalo limeligawa Bunge hilo vipande viwili.
Kutokana na mgawanyiko huo, kauli zenye utata, kejeli, matusi, dhihaka na ubaguzi ni mambo yaliyoshika hatamu katika mjadala wa sura hizo mbili, huku viongozi wa Bunge; Sitta na Makamu wake, Samia Suluhu Hassan wakilaumiwa kwa kushindwa kudhibiti hali hiyo.
Mwanzoni mwa wiki hii, Mjumbe wa Bunge hilo, Ezekiah Oluoch alimshutumu Sitta kwamba ameshindwa kudhibiti nidhamu katika Bunge na kwamba ndiye chanzo cha kuondoka kwa wajumbe wapatao 200 ambao ni wanachama wa Umoja wa Katiba ya Wananchi (Ukawa).
“Mwenendo wa Bunge Maalumu ulikuwa na dalili zote za kuonyesha kungetokea matatizo ndani yake kutokana na mipasho ambayo ilikuwa ikitokea kwa wajumbe pamoja na lugha ambazo siyo za staha wakati wa kutengeneza kanuni,” alisema Oluoch na kuongeza:
“Kwanza matumizi ya lugha zisizo na staha, mwenyekiti anaruhusu wajumbe kuchangia hoja kwa kupeana mipasho bila kujali hoja iliyopo mezani kinyume na kanuni,” alisema Olouch.
Hata hivyo, Suluhu alisema amekuwa akiendesha Bunge hilo kwa umakini mkubwa na kwamba kila anaposikia lugha chafu amekuwa akiwabana wajumbe kwa kuwaamuru kufuta kauli au kuomba radhi kwa matamshi. “Sipendezwi na lugha chafu, kwa hiyo mojawapo ya mambo ambayo huwa najitahidi kusikiliza kwa makini kila michango inapotolewa na wajumbe bungeni ni kubaini kama wametumia lugha zisizostahili, kisha kuchukua hatua kwa mujibu wa kanuni zetu,” alisema Suluhu.
Alikiri kwamba wapo baadhi ya wajumbe ambao wamekuwa wakigoma au kukataa kuomba radhi na kwamba masuala yao hupelekwa kwenye Kamati ya Maadili ambayo ina mamlaka ya kuchukua hatua zaidi kwa mujibu wa kanuni za Bunge hilo.
Matakwa ya Kanuni
Sehemu ya Tano ya Kanuni za Bunge Maalumu inatoa mwongozo wa mambo yanayokatazwa na yale yanayopaswa kufuatwa wakati wa mjadala.
Kanuni ya 46 imeorodhesha mambo yasiyoruhusiwa ambayo ni pamoja na kusema uongo, kutoa taarifa zisizokuwa za kweli, kuzungumza jambo lolote ambalo halipo kwenye mjadala na kutumia majina ya marais na waasisi wa Taifa kwa dhihaka.
Pia inazuia matumizi ya lugha ya kuudhi, kubagua, kunyanyapaa au inayodhalilisha watu wengine, kuzomea, kupiga kelele za aina yoyote zinazoweza kuvuruga mjadala au mwenendo bora wa shughuli za Bunge hilo.
Licha ya makatazo hayo, wajumbe wamekuwa wakikiuka kanuni bila kuchukuliwa hatua na hali hiyo imekuwa chanzo cha mivutano, zomeazomea, kelele na mambo mengine hadi kundi la Ukawa kususia kikao wakieleza kutokuridhishwa na mwenendo wa Bunge.
Kuufyata na kuufyatua
Baadhi ya kauli tata zilizojitokeza ni pamoja na ile iliyotolewa na Asha Bakari Makame kwa mjumbe mwenzake, Ismail Jussa kuwa anafanana na watu wenye mabusha nyuma ambao ndiyo huufyata.
Makame ambaye pia ni Makamu Mwenyekiti wa Umoja wa Wanawake wa CCM (UWT), alikwenda mbali zaidi na kumwambia Jussa kuwa ana matatizo ya kiafya na si mwanamume kamili, kwani ameshindwa kuoa na hana watoto wakati ana umri mkubwa.
“Huyu Jussa anasema kwamba tumeufyata, hapa tuwekane sawa, maana ya kuufyata ni mtu kuwa na mabusha pale yanapokuwa nyuma ndiyo kuufyata kwa hiyo yeye ndiyo ameufyata, ana busha huyu,” alisema Bakari.
Naye Profesa Ibrahim Lipumba alichafua hali ya hewa pale alipowafananisha wajumbe wa Bunge Maalumu na kundi la mauaji nchini Rwanda, Intarahamwe.
“Tumechoka kusikiliza matusi. “Tumechoka kudharau mawazo ya wananchi, tumechoka ubaguzi hatuwezi kuwa sehemu ya kundi la Intarahamwe linalohamasisha ubaguzi ndani ya Tanzania hili hatulikubali. Tunawaachia, watu wote tunaotaka Katiba ya wananchi tunawaachia Intarahamwe mwendelee na Bunge lenu.”
Mjumbe mwingine ni Mwanakhamis Kassim Said aliyesema: “Mimi nilikuwa namwomba baba yangu mdogo Seif (Maalim Seif Sharif Hamad) awarejeshe watu wake humu (bungeni) kwa sababu mpira unachezwa huku ndani. Hatutakii mema humu, tena ana choyo na husuda. Namwomba baba mdogo atuache, alichokitaka amekipata, king’ora anazunguka saa 24 Dar es Salaam, Unguja. Mheshimiwa Mwenyekiti Baba mdogo kila mara yuko kwenye pipa (ndege) mara Uingereza, mara Canada mara wapi? Hicho ndicho anachokitaka amekipata.”
Mjumbe mwingine, Mohamed Seif Khatibu alisema: “Nimejifunza kuwa baadhi ya wanasiasa wa upinzani ni vinyonga. Lakini Maalim Seif ni kinyonga, wakipita kwenye mvua wanakuwa na rangi ya mvua, kwenye jua wanakuwa na rangi ya jua, baharini wanakuwa na rangi ya bahari.”
Tuhuma za rushwa
Mjumbe Ezekiah Wenje alisema baadhi ya mawaziri wamewahonga wajumbe wa kundi la 201 ili waunge mkono msimamo wao, lakini alipotakiwa kufuta kauli hiyo alikataa na suala lake kufikishwa kwenye kamati ya kanuni.
“Kuna wajumbe wengine walikwenda hadi kwa waziri mkuu ambako walikula, walikunywa hadi saa 7:00 usiku, wengine walikwenda kwa Gaudensia Kabaka (Waziri wa Kazi na Ajira) na walikula na kunywa na kupewa bahasha.”
Kuingia msituni
Kapteni John Komba alitangaza kuingia msituni iwapo Bunge Maalumu la Katiba litapitisha muundo wa serikali tatu, huku akimshutumu Mwenyekiti wa Tume ya Marekebisho ya Katiba, Jaji Joseph Warioba na timu yake ni waasi kama Adamu na Eva waliomuasi Mungu kutokana na kile walichokifanya cha kupendekeza serikali tatu. Mwingine katika orodha ni Bernard Membe aliyesema, Tume ya Mzee Warioba itakuja kukumbukwa kwa kuratibu mauaji ya Muungano na Bunge nalo litakuja kulaaniwa kwa kubariki mauaji hayo.
Watoto wa shetani
Mjumbe Paul Makonda alisema: “Shetani alikuja duniani kuiharibu dunia, kuiangamiza na kuteketeza kila kilichostahili kuungana… watoto wake ni Mheshimiwa Jussa, watoto wake ni Mheshimiwa Mbowe, watoto wake ni Mheshimiwa Lipumba… Hawa ni watoto wa shetani”.
Mwingine: Waride Bakari Jabu alisema: “Chiku Abwao mimi namshangaa sana anayesema bora Muungano uvunjike lakini Tanganyika iwepo. Tunafahamu asili yake mwenyewe ni Mkongo mumewe ndiye Mtanganyika, namwambia Muungano huu utakuwepo na utaendelea kuwapo.”
Mjumbe Tundu Lissu alisema: “Tanganyika haikuuawa na makubaliano ya Muungano, bali iliuawa kwa amri za Nyerere…. Mwalimu Nyerere hakuwa na mamlaka yoyote ya kikatiba ya kutunga amri na kuua Tanganyika.”

Imeandikwa na Neville Meena, Daniel Mjema, Sharon Sauwa na Beatrice Moses.

Friday, March 7

DAR ES SALAAM HAINA MASTER PLAN!!??


Kumbe jiji la Dar-es-salaam halina mpango unaoeleweka wa ujenzi, 
hali inayopelekea jiji kuendelea kukua bila mpangilio maalum, ambao unaendena
na mahitaji ya watu kwa maana ya Idadi pamoja na uwezo wa Miundombinu yake..


Na kweli mitaa yetu angalia hapa parking barabarani watu wanapita humo humo yaani kila kitu kipo kipo tuu


Kariakoo nako hakufai vurugu mechi hujui wapi pa kupita waendao kwa miguu wapi pa magari wapi pa biashara wote wamo humo humo 


Na hii ndio upanga 


Hapa sijui huu ni mtaa wa biashara au ila wamo humo humo


Sehemu zenye nafasi mimi nadhani ni kama hizi tuu keepleft au sijui round about ila majina hayo kwa kiswahili usiniulize 


Cheki jinsi majengo yalivyoumana 




Na umeme umo humo humo well usifikirie hizi nyaya zikianguka juu ya umati huo w watu itakuwaje


Vichochoroni nako tumo tumo tuu biashara madampo kama kawa


Ila ukichoka sehemu za kupumzika ndio kama hizi humo humo zipo


Foleni unatamani gari lingekuwa na mabawa upae humo barabarani ni cheni mtindo mmoja


Wale wa kigamboni wao hubanana humo humo kwenye pantoni




Sijui hata hewa ya oxigen inapita ila tumo humo humo wengi ila hatuna jinsi


Mtaa wa kisutu napo wanajenga humo humo na fikiria sasa zamani zileeee kulikuwa na stendi ya mabasi ya mikoani hapo hapo


Biashara hapo hapo kwa kitaa


Ndio masoko yetu tena humo humo


Wateja hawaji kiivyo ila ndio kutafuta tena masoko


Ila wakija wanatukuta humo humo tunawauzia tuu


Hata Obama alipopitia alitukuta humo humo twajeuka kumpungia halafu tunaendelea na yetu


Mungu awalaze mahala pema wale wote waliotutoka maana na lile lililoanguka lilikuwa humo humo kwa kitaa

Hii ndi Dar Es Salaam




















Wednesday, March 5

MVUA YAZIBA MITAA KIBAO DAR



Mvua inayoendelea kunyesha jijini Dar imeanza kuathiri baadhi ya maeneo ambapo kamera yetu imewanasa wakazi wa mtaa wa Mwananyamala B kwa Msisiri wakijaza kifusi katika moja ya barabara zilizojaa maji kiasi cha kuifanya ishindwe  kutopitika kama picha zinavyoonyesha.


Dereva wa bodaboda na abiria wake wakipita katika njia iliyojaa maji.


Maji yakitiririka kwa kasi katika katika mfereji mmoja uliopo Kijitonyama.


Wananchi wakijitahidi kuuondoa uchafu uliokwama maeneo yao.

UTABIRI WA HALI YA HEWA:







Monday, March 3

Letter from Africa: Miniskirts and morals


In our series of letters from African journalists, film maker and columnist Farai Sevenzo considers plans to ban miniskirts in Uganda.

April has given us a clutch of anniversaries and the usual mix of anxieties dressed as news.

South Africa turned 19, Zimbabwe turned 33 and we wondered what would become of Mali as it was decided a UN peacekeeping force would take over from the French, while the French themselves had an embassy bombed in Libya and Somalia's al-Shabab showed signs of a pulse still beating in its violent heart.
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If a woman wears a miniskirt, we will arrest her”
Simon Lokodo
Uganda's ethics and integrity minister

African athletes won a couple of international marathons and Kenya's new cabinet had a woman defence minister for the first time and more was said by financial analysts about the rapid economic growth on the continent.

You would think, then, as an Africa watcher that the usual mix of information filled the newspapers and cyberspace with the political and financial.

But a quick glimpse of the press in Uganda showed us that the month of April was also about "integrity and ethics" because Simon Lokodo, Uganda's ethics and integrity minister, was railing against the miniskirt in his preparation of a proposed anti-pornography bill.

"Any attire which exposes intimate parts of the human body, especially areas that are of erotic function, is outlawed. Anything above the knee is outlawed. If a woman wears a miniskirt, we will arrest her," pronounced the minister in a confusing bid to preserve the nation's modesty.

In truth Mr Lokodo has joined a long list of men - for it is usually men - who have taken offence at what women wear throughout independent Africa for decades.

Hastings Banda, Malawi's independence leader, was a stickler for conservative dress
Cultural colonialism

Hastings Kamuzu Banda's Malawi banned the same skirt and frowned at women wearing trousers back in the days when dictatorship was hip and fashionable - Uganda's Idi Amin did not much like that particular skirt either.

An explosion of cultural colonialism in the form of hip-hop, pop, belly dancing, pole dancing, satellite television - which beams the dramas of other lives into African homes and the fashions of a recklessly cool world youth into African minds - has had the likes of Mr Lokodo scrambling to hold back the waves of moral corruption he imagines are coming his way.

Mr Lokodo's Anti-Pornography Bill has not defined "pornography" as we may or may not encounter it on the streets of Kampala, nor does it tell us what his ministry intends to do about the very real pornography available at the touch of a cursor on the World Wide Web of which Uganda is a part.
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This line of argument fails to acknowledge that people who rape or are driven to drooling uncontrollably at the sight of a female thigh with which they are not well acquainted are provoked only by the demons in their own heads”

Yet to be fair to the minister of ethics and integrity, a far more insidious vice than women's summer wear has been arriving in African cities, and by chance, in 2012, Kampala police arrested a foreigner who had been recording pictures of himself engaging in sexual acts with Ugandan children.

No law existed to give him more than the two years in prison or a 6m Ugandan shilling ($2,318, £1492) fine on offer under the Computer Misuse Act, and the criminal simply paid the fine and was released - only to be hauled back to jail because of the public outcry which ensued. He is to now face a new trial, including charges of indecent exposure.

The huge net of globalisation that has given us Chinese architecture and mobile phone companies of every persuasion that have opened up our capitals, has not been discriminating about who or what comes in to shred our traditional values and corrupt our young.

Some argue pornography leads to increased sexual violence - although others say it does not.
'Objects of attraction'

The Anti-Pornography Bill up for discussion in Uganda says there has been "an increase in pornographic material in the Ugandan mass media and an increase in nude dancing in the entertainment world… One of the dangers pornography poses is that it fuels sexual crimes against women…" and the bill seeks to slap a 10m shilling fine and/or 10 years in jail on anyone who engages in pornography, dirty dancing and minimalist attire.


Last year, South Africans marched in protest against attacks on women in miniskirts

Yet while Minister Lokodo's intentions may have been to protect Ugandans from the morally degenerate, he has taken his very broad assegai (spear) to personal freedoms and ignited the long-running debate about where sexual crimes begin - with the criminals or with victims because of what they are wearing?

Women, he alleged, should not wear provocative clothing and men, he says, are not usually the "object of attraction and can go shirtless" on the beach.

This line of argument gets us all nowhere very fast and fails to acknowledge that people who rape or are driven to drooling uncontrollably at the sight of a female thigh with which they are not well acquainted are provoked only by the demons in their own heads and pander to their basest natures.

As a former Catholic priest, Minister Lokodo would know a thing or two about demons, and know too that the best place to get rid of them is through the church, not via government statutes.

Should prayer fail, there will always be a Ugandan jail. And the miniskirt has very little to do with it.

Thursday, February 13

10 Most Powerful Nelson Mandela Tributes

The news of Nelson Mandela’s death reverberated across the globe, eliciting numerous heartfelt tributes from admiring citizens, politicians, and more. It seems that nearly everyone, whether they agreed with Mandela’s policies or not, recognized the enormous impact he had on South Africa and the world. 


The Soweto Gospel Choir’s Woolworths Flashmob One of the more recent and surprising tributes came in a Pretoria Woolworths department store. The Soweto Gospel Choir surprised shoppers with a moving rendition of Johnny Clegg’s “Asimbonanga.” (Translation: We have not see him.) Originally, the choir was going to sing James Brown’s “I Feel Good” as a marketing pitch for the store, but changed its tune after Mandela died.


Bill Keller’s New York Times obituary Bill Keller wrote an extensive obituary that provided a comprehensive look at Mandela’s life and influence. Keller was well equipped for the piece, having served as the newspaper’s former Johannesburg bureau chief in the 1990s and interviewed Mandela in 2007. The obituary includes unpublished comments from the interview, including reproaches of his successors, as well as this powerful line, “Hating clouds the mind. It gets in the way of strategy. Leaders cannot afford to hate.”
Maya Angelou’s “His Day is Done” At the request of the U.S. State Department, Maya Angelou penned “His Day is Done” as a tribute poem on behalf of the American people to Mandela. Circulated in 15 languages, the poem praises Mandela’s endurance and commitment to freedom, and compares him to David slaying the mighty Goliath.


Jacob Zuma leading “Thina Sizwe” It’s well known that Jacob Zuma received more boos than cheers when he took the stage in Johannesburg at Mandela’s memorial service, but he struck a different tone at the funeral in Mandela’s home town in Qunu. After stepping up to the microphone, he began to sing “Thina Sizwe,” a song from the apartheid era representing the struggle and determination for freedom. Hundreds joined in, and many even continued after it ended with “Nelson Mandela,” another moving struggle-era song.


Tony Leon’s Tribute, 15 Years Ago Tony Leon, a member of the opposition party to the ANC, refused to join Mandela’s cabinet when asked. But when Mandela’s presidency was drawing to a close, Leon stood in front of parliament to praise the country’s first black president. He said, “People might think it is difficult for a politician to give tribute to a man of an opposing party. In fact this is the easiest speech I have ever delivered to this house…My respect and admiration for him is unconditional. He graces this house. He graces this country. He graces humanity.”


The Eiffel Tower Following Mandela’s death,  the Eiffel Tower in Paris was lit up for six nights in commemoration thanks to the Institut Français and the National Arts Council of South Africa, along with the City of Paris and Société d’Exploitation de la Tour Eiffel. The inscription, “Nelson Mandela 1918-2013″ was lit in enormous letters, and sky projectors flashed the colors of the South African flag. The tribute was especially touching on Dec. 16, South Africa’s Day of Reconciliation. 


Botlhale Boikanyo’s poem on “South Africa’s Got Talent”

The year before Mandela died, 11-year-old Botlahle Boikanyo performed on “South Africa’s Got Talent” with a moving poem that paid tribute to Nelson Mandela, or Tata. Naturally, she won, and it’s definitely worth a listen. When she pulled a South African flag from the pocket of her orange prison jumpsuit at the end, there may not have been a dry eye in the house.

The Johannesburg Shul and the story of Joseph Nelson Mandela was dubbed by many as the “Joseph of South Africa” for his commitment to reconciliation and rejection of violence after the end of apartheid. Remarkably, the story of Joseph was the Torah portion the weekend after Mandela’s death. Rabbi Warren Goldstein recounted to a crowd of thousands in Johannesburg Joseph’s — and Mandela’s — story of overcoming years of imprisonment to lead his nation.


Joyce Banda’s eulogy At the final memorial service in Qunu, Joyce Banda, the first female and current president of Malawi, delivered a eulogy that brought hundreds to their feet. From the beginning, she strayed from her prepared speech and said this instead, “After three years of isolation, humiliation and name calling, I found myself in a situation where I had to work with those who had desired to prevent me from becoming president of my country. I had to forgive, but I had to forgive them without any effort, because my Madiba had prepared me.”


Desmond Tutu’s call for unification Archbishop Desmond Tutu has long been considered one of Mandela’s closest friends and confidants, and indeed their combined commitment to a free and equal South Africa has had enormous influence on the country today. So Tutu’s words following Mandela’s death were especially poignant. “The sun will rise tomorrow. It will not be as bright as yesterday. But life will carry on…God is asking South Africans, please become what you are, show the world we are members of one family. We belong together.” 

10 Things You Didn’t Know About Robert Mugabe

Robert Mugabe, 89, is undoubtedly a controversial figure, but many are familiar only with the details of his most public life. Both his childhood and adult life are filled with surprises, many of which influenced decisions during his numerous terms as Zimbabwe’s president.



Mugabe is the product of a religious upbringing Both of Robert Mugabe’s parents were extremely religious, and strict with their son. Throughout his childhood, he attended Jesuit school, and credits an Irish priest as one of his most influential mentors in his youth. 



Two of his brothers died when he was young Sadly, Mugabe lost both of his older brothers by the age of 10. One died from poisoning, while the other passed away not long after their father abandoned the family.


Mugabe has a strong background in education Many are aware that Mugabe has always been a strong proponent of education. Zimbabwe’s literacy rate reached the highest of any African country during his presidency. This is in large part due to the fact that Mugabe worked as a school teacher prior to beginning his political career, first teaching in Ghana and then returning to Zimbabwe to join the revolution against the white government of Rhodesia.




He has seven university degrees

Six of Mugabe’s university degrees were actually earned while he was doing distance learning in prison. They cover a broad range of topics including education, economics, administration, and law. Degrees include a Bachelor of Laws and Master’s of Laws from the University of London’s external program, earned during his stint in a Salisbury prison.


After his release from prison, he escaped Zimbabwe with the help of a white nun

Though the Rhodesians did release Mugabe from prison, he was not supposed to leave the country. A white nun helped him to cross into Mozambique, where he was able to rejoin the revolutionary armies.

He was a Nobel Peace Prize nominee In 1981, Mugabe was on the short list for the Nobel Peace Prize for his initial stance about reconciliation following Zimbabwe’s independence and his election as the country’s first president. He said, “Our people, young and old, men and women, black and white, living and dead, are, on this occasion, being brought together in a new form of national unity that makes them all Zimbabweans.” 


He had an extramarital affair while his wife was dying from cancer While his first wife was struggling with her cancer, Mugabe started up with his private secretary, Grace. When it came out that she was pregnant with his child, he ignored popular opinion and married her in 1996. 


Many honors he received from various institutions have been revoked As the number of human rights violations perpetrated by Mugabe have increased, many of his honors have been revoked. For instance, Queen Elizabeth II rescinded his knighthood in 2008, the Hunger Project took back his 1988 award of the Africa Prize for Leadership for the Sustainable End of Hunger, and numerous universities have revoked honorary degrees, including Michigan State University, University of Massachusetts, and the University of Edinburgh.


He plans to run for president again in 2018 Mugabe won the most recent election in Zimbabwe in 2013 with 61 percent of the vote, but it is widely believed that voter fraud occurred. Despite this, and despite his advanced age, Mugabe has announced his intention to run again for election in 2018 for the office that he has held since 1987.