The media in Kampala has always been awash with threatening headlines that usually never live beyond a fortnight. The competition is so high that once a headline has been kicked out, it struggles to make a come back. To many, they never achieve this. The bakers of these cakes are those (in most cases) little known journalists who get overshadowed by the works of their mighty hands. The formation process of these stories is usually knitted between two warring parties.
What on earth would have given Dr Kiiza Besigye a ride to fame if it were not for HE YK Museveni? It has taken them 15 years of headline domination and yet the space still looks big enough. Dr Besigye has been tormented quite often. There are times the media forgets about him and before you know it, he makes a comeback.
Dr Kiiza Besigye
One reason to account for his comeback is because of the man who has been at the helm of the Police command for over a decade now. I do not know how many times Dr Besigye has said the name Kayihura. And he never says it softly. He always emphasizes. The kind of emphasis is usually in bold, upper case, black and white in the largest font possible; KAYIHURA. He never says it once, it seems not to be enough, he repeatedly always comes back to say Kayihura, Kayihura and more.
Police Chief Kale Kayihura during one of the reach outs
Recently at a police event, the police chief, Major General Kale Kayihura asked the policemen to work on their ethics since he has quite a number of cases to answer to as of current. Afande Kayihura has been in the news tormented by little known, uncivilized, untrained, never-to-make-it street sharp army known as Kifesi crew. The Kifesi crew became rampant at the beginning of this year 2016. It had been around but without media recognition. Credits to Solomon Sserwanja who took it upon himself to give the crew a one week long media coverage.
One little boy, Ashraf vends bogoya along Entebbe road round about at Kibuye. He argues that the crew is not called kifesi. Their maiden name was ki-fence. The crew moves in a group that builds a fence around their target client before they rob them. This fence makes it had for the “client” (read victim) to chase the robber. However, the other school of thought as presented by Sserwnja, most of the members of Kifesi crew have scars across their faces as testimony of survival from a rush-crush they were once involved in. Whether it is Kifesi or Ki-fence, the crew has done their best in bringing Afande Kayihura from his air conditioned office at Naguru to the ghettos of Kampala. Every time he comes downtown he promises to “weed them out” but we all no he has not yet come that close.
There is a way crime and criminality have rendered the police ineffective since more often than not, every after such an incident, the police will always continue with investigations. This signature has stood the test of time regardless of how many publicists that the institution comes up with. From Simeo Nsubuga, Judith Nabakooba (both of them now Honourable Members of Parliament), Ibin Senkumbi, Polly Namaye, Fred Enanga, and now Afande Kaweesa.
There is a kind of training that the police (publicists) undergo before they assume office. One thing you are assured of is that they always have a way of handling the media. They always have their answers regardless of what the media asks. And once this publicist gets comfortable with the media, they get a transfer usually to a police station not very near media reach. A case in point, Sam Omara.
Usually when the media targets someone, they never have the slightest of a chance to escape their slaughter but that is not the case with the police. They always fix the media proper! The only person who has come that close in Uganda is Eng. Abraham Byandala.
Of recent the media in gruesome acts of torment, they stumbled into one of their own; a senior self made journalist with all due professionalism (as he tirelessly reminds us). His name is Tamale Mirundi. This former press advisor to the president has had his rounds with the media. He is one of the most resented journalists who speaks their mind. He has picked wars with a number of big wigs in the government and the corporate class but some how he still survives. He has a weekly TV show that is arguably one of the most watched. And one of the reasons for that are the secrets he reveals to the public of things very many of the journalists have no idea of. If they do, they never say it out. He is an arrogant speaker but a very good conversationist. A number of quotes have been made from his presentations. Tamale Mirundi often times uses the word mafia in his speech to refer to the people who influence policies in this town. There are three people who have been on his mind for quite a while. The first one is Robert Kabushenga, the CEO of Vision Group. Whatever Robert did to Mirundi, only God knows. The other culprit is former prime minister and presidential candidate Amama Mbabazi. Tamale took it upon himself during presidential campaigns to speak doom about this man. At a point it was argued that maybe Tamale was campaigning for Mbabazi implicitly. I have a feeling that even if Tamale Mirundi got a flat tire along they way, he would accuse Amama Mbabazi for the misfortune. The other of Tamale’s nemesis who has stood the trial of his rivalry is the Executive Director of Kampala Capital City Authority, Jennifer Musisi. If I may attempt to find reason for their woes, it was the expulsion of the taxi operating body, UTODA that Jennifer did away within months upon taking office. Allegedly, Tamale was one of the owners of the taxis.
But can I wind up this without talking about Erias Lukwago and Jennifer Musisi, who didn’t see them run to the media fighting for keys. Power caused it all! They had their time though they seem to have got over it, may be?
And the rage goes on.
Every man has their tormentors in another man but along the way we all move on. Life just happens to us all.
Photo credit: Internet