I woke up at nine-thirty Monday morning secure in the knowledge that riots were going to erupt somewhere in town and, in doing so, disrupt my work schedule. Don’t get me wrong, I sympathise with the cause of the common man who is feeling the brunt of rising fuel and food prices, but I am kind of rich, so all I can offer is lip service. I had ten litres in my tank and plans to meet a mushroom steak lunch at Soho’s.
I expected the riots to take place in Kasangati; I had no idea that the moment I stepped out of the bathroom of my luxurious mansion (well, it’s luxurious compared to the hovel the common man lives in. I mean, just by having a bathroom INDOORS. The common man looks at me the same way I look at houses in Binigeria.)… I stepped out of the bathroom to see my twitter feed flashing with the news that there were teargas cannisters going off in Kireka.
Kireka, a city suburb, is on my way to town.
Now, you may not know enough about Kireka to understand why this meant that I must immediately change back in to my pjs.
Most of Uganda is populated by normal, godfearing, hardworking people– they may not be as rich, or as educated, or as internet-enabled as us, but they are decent, intelligent, and honest people in their way, and all they want to do is get through the day, just like you and me.
But Kireka is different.
Not everyone in Kireka is like this but we have a higher psycho-to-normal person ratio than other suburbs. A lot of Kirekans are fine people, but there are plenty who have that thing in their eyes that you just see and you know that they have thought about rape at some point in their lives. Probably not that far in the past. I look at Kirekans and I know that some of these people stab stray cats for fun. I can see from the way some of these Kirekans walk that they don’t even wear underwear.
Do you know that there are NEVER any crusades in Kireka?
So when I heard that they were rioting in Kireka, I took my shoes and socks off and went back to bed.
Now, just because I was not able to make it to ULK headquarters does not mean I did not work. I was able to compile tips on how to survive riots.
- Don’t go outside. Stay inside. The reason for this is simple. Uganda anti-riot police recruits heavily from the Kireka area, so some of the officers have no ddiini. They see you, they will beat you up. Don’t think being innocent of any crime will help. Everyone outside has a sign on their head saying, “Hi, Officer, would you do me the honour of beating me up today?”
- Have plenty of provisions that you bought the previous day. I had bread, cakes, fruits, Splash (just because I am not walking in protest, doesn’t mean I am not supporting the cause. As much as possible we should support local businesses. If you are going to spend, give the money to a Ugandan. I buy my stuff from small businesses owners in my area, not Nakumatt. This was not joking, this was serious.)
- Make sure your provisions include alcohol. This point is self-evident.
- Lock the door. If you lock your door with a padlock, lock it from outside, so it looks like you are not home. The other day I saw cops barge into people’s homes, drag them out and beat them up. You don’t want this to happen to you. So act like you are not home.
- Close the curtains. Turn off the TV
- Have a previous vasectomy and/or tubal ligation so that you don’t have any children who will make noise and alert the cops that you are inside.
- Watch Twitter closely.
- When it’s over
- Wait a bit more. Don’t get cocky.
- after a couple of days, you can leave and go back to town to get more provisions. If you are still in solidarity with the common man after having to go through that, then you are a true patriot. Me, I’m going to Kigali until Uganda styles up. I mean, the name Bazanye could easily be Rwandan. How do you know I’m a Ugandan in the first place?