Thursday January 4 2018

Age limit bid: Ugandan MPs make Judas Iscariot jealous

Riot police march in line to take positions at

Riot police march in line to take positions at Parliament where they were deployed ahead of anti-age limit protests on September 21, 2017. PHOTO BY ALEX ESAGALA  

By Gilbert Baluku

Dear members of the 10th Parliament. Happy new ear. I am sure you enjoyed the festive days, which came shortly after you hastily amended untested article 102(b) of our constitution to cater for complaints that had been raised by no one. To say the least, the amendments took good care of your greed.
As you toasted in celebration, you successfully left many of us to crucify ourselves between two thieves - regret for the past and fear of the future. For an Article that had caused no harm and was not about to cause any harm to any Ugandan, you drained national coffers to fix what wasn’t broken. We must all suffer one of two things: The pain of discipline or the pain of regret. Sadly, you chose the later for us.
The Bible (Proverbs 6:16-19) points out seven things that the Lord hates and cannot tolerate. They are: A proud look, a lying tongue, hands that kill innocent people, a mind that thinks up wicked plans, feet that hurry off to do evil, a witness who tells one lie after another, and someone who stirs up trouble, among friends.
While I have no evidence that God had Uganda’s legislators in mind, I also have no evidence on the contrary. The coincidence is, however, too significant to ignore. The speed with which you pushed for passing of this Bill brought your greed to the fore.
I previously perceived leadership as a privilege to better the lives of others and rather not an opportunity to satisfy personal greed. You perfectly taught me that I was wrong!
Looking at the way you willfully slaughtered hope, it is clear that betrayal is the only truth that sticks about your legacy (or rather lack of it).
The betrayal that oozes out of your every pore turns Judas Iscariot into a saint. He who is not contented with what he has gotten to in 35 years, would certainly not be contented with what he would like to have.
For you to keep a deaf ear to your voters because of such a being turns you into the biggest turncoats Uganda will regret in many years. Your greed pushed you into a snare of temptations that will eventually drown you into remorse.
For you learnt nothing and forgot nothing from the law makers who scrapped the term limits from the same Constitution. At one point in time, you will certainly want to say sorry, but the masses will instead tell you sorry!
The countries we admire most didn’t become the most prosperous countries in the world just by rewarding greed and recklessness. They didn’t come this far by letting the special interests of selfish rulers run wild. They did so because they easily understood that greed is a bottomless pit, which exhausts the person in an endless effort to satisfy the need without ever reaching satisfaction.
I, therefore, salute our 97 Members of Parliament, who gave in their best. Nobody who ever gave his best regretted it. Soon Ugandans will learn to be cautious of who is holding their quarters because you the 317 law makers just demonstrated to us that as soon as you get four quarters, you will change them for a shilling.
I pray that history places you where you belong.

Mr Baluku is a telecommunications engineer [email protected]