On January 26, 2019, Jonathan Nalebo, a media personality, paid a courtesy visit to Enid Mirembe’s family with the intention of formally introducing himself as the fiancé interested in taking her hand in marriage in what is known as kukyala.
Shortly after the ceremony, Jonathan and Enid (a former beauty pageant contestant and proprietor of the rolex festival) shared a few pictures of the visit on their respective social media platforms and all hell broke loose.
A section of people came out to attack the couple. One of the reasons Jonathan believes they were attacked is because social media has given a license to everyone to say whatever is on their mind.
“There is a growing trend of moral decay in our society where certain individuals enjoy mocking others,” he says, adding, “Here I was sharing a beautiful moment and some people took it as an opportunity to insult us.”
“I cannot figure out why most people came after me. Maybe it’s because I do not look good to them,” Enid says.
The hurting statements
“The most painful statements to read were that I am too dark and old. Then, there were those who criticised my height,” the former beauty pageant contestant says, adding, “Yes, I am dark and taller than Jonathan so what? We are not the first couple to have height differences, are we? Just look around you.”
Speaking of height, Jonathan refers to his own parents who had a notable height difference.
“My mother was taller than my father and she would often tease him whenever it was time to take pictures. She would say that the pictures should be taken while both of them were seated rather than standing. By the time my mother passed on, they had been together for about 32 years,” Nalebo says.
Jokingly, he adds, “And well, since I am short, I would not want someone who is also short. Many times, we get attracted to what we do not have. It is life.”
Rather than come out to defend themselves, the couple opted to keep quiet.
“I am learning that when people come out to attack or criticise you on social media, it is better not to respond. When you come out to say something, it is like you are feeding these bullies more information, hence, building more on the story and encouraging them to talk more about you,” Mirembe says. Keep quiet and in the end, the storm shall pass, the mother of one says. Nalebo agrees.
“I kept quiet to the extent of turning down media interviews. Enid remained silent as well. Eventually, the dust settled and people moved on to talk about other things,” he says.
But because Mirembe was the main victim, Nalebo says he was constantly worried about her.
“And I continued urging her to ignore these bullies. I am happy that she eventually moved past the pain,” he says.
Silence is golden, the couple says. Whether they regret sharing pictures from the formal visit on social media, they respond, “Absolutely not. It was a beautiful moment that we felt compelled to share with those who wished us well.”
Where to focus
The couple believes there are more important things to consider in a relationship than physical attributes.
“Looks do not matter because over time, you stop paying attention to that,” Nalebo says, adding, “What is more important is compatibility.”
On their part, the duo say they were attracted to each other for different reasons.
Nalebo says, “Our relationship was meant to be and that is why we are together.”
Regarding what qualities he finds most admirable about Mirembe, Nalebo says, “She can run a home properly even when I am not there. I also love the fact that she is classier than me. If you are to ask me, I am more of a traditional and grounded man.”
About her man, Mirembe says: “He is a brilliant and visionary man. I remember during and after my Miss Tourism pageantry days, I was working on different projects including the rolex festival initiative. He was one of the people advising, encouraging and guiding me,” she says.
How they met
The duo met at the time Mirembe was contesting in the Miss Tourism pageantry in 2015/16, which saw crowned Miss Tourism Busoga Region. Nalebo, a media personality, occasionally bumped into her at events. The two eventually became friends.
“Our friendship reached a point where she would occasionally reach out to me asking for assistance, including media coverage for her rolex festival initiative. In some way, we connected, hence, leading to the road we are on today,” Mirembe says.
The couple have a daughter, one, and are planning to hold their introduction and wedding ceremonies soon. These plans were put on hold due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.