When you study the history of Uganda as a country, you will come across a number of interesting changes and transformations that have occurred over the decades. At one point, Uganda as a country did not even exist. The land was occupied by disinterested natives who cared so little about foreigners and their motives no matter how ulterior. Migrations happened here and there, a couple of intermarriages occurred and the entire population became one big happy bowl of confusion. Over the years we have thrived in this confusion and we have embraced our identity as Ugandans. Certain values, norms and practices have become so deeply rooted that it would be unfair and unbecoming of us to attempt to change them.
Just so we are clear, this is the sweatshirt I am wearing right now
Recently I heard about a proposal to have the National Anthem changed or at least re-worked so that it can be groovier and less sombre. When I first heard of this idea, I almost chocked on the air I was breathing. It sounded extremely ridiculous, utterly nonsensical and basically a waste of time and money – to say the least. However, like the curious person I am, I attempted to understand why and how this national anthem revamp may be necessary and then it hit me – we could actually do with some changes. My mind went into overdrive and I instantly became burdened by so many different aspects of change that we as Ugandans should consider embracing.
I therefore come before you my dear friends, to share my plan for the new Uganda.
1. The National Anthem
Naturally, the person who thought of redoing the National Anthem was thinking further ahead than the rest of us. With the rate at which music is evolving today, it won’t be long before our Anthem is relegated to the likeness of church hymns – only known and sang by old people when the occasion absolutely demands it. I suggest that we get the young people in on the action. How about requesting one of (or all of) Mafikizolo, Nicki Minaj, Debanj, Keko, Wiz Khalifa, Avicii, May D, Benezeri, Lana Del Rey and Naava to come together for a monstrous remix. We can have a couple of raps in there, some smooth silky voiced bits, a few deadly instruments and a climax of a lethal beat to go with it. That way, we can start having our anthem at house parties and discos. We may even win a nomiation at the MTV Awards. Change the bloody thing already!
Imagine Avicii playing our Anthem to a sold out crowd
2. National Language
Everyone knows Ugandans speak the best English. Some Ugandans speak English so well they could pass off as born and bred Englishmen. This however does not mean we cannot change our national language. As a matter of fact, let’s have the language changed from English to a more unique and strange language like the Ongota language. This language is so rare it is only spoken by 6 natives all of whom are in the evening of their lives. We can implore these people to teach us their rare language before they can pass on and then we can adopt this language right away. It would then be criminal for anyone to speak English, French, Swahili or anything that is not the Ongota language. Seeing as there is actually a professor at Addis Ababa University in Ethiopia who knows this language we can instantly get him citizenship, name him a hero, get him a couple of medals, build him a pad in Kololo and let him start work right away.
Not any more!
3. National Food
Being the heterogeneous society that we are, it does not make sense for us to adopt one particular tribe’s delicacy as the national dish. We can however whip up some delicious combination that has a bit of every tribe’s tastes in there. I have a friend named Sera Akely who is an accomplished Chef somewhere in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. We can hire her to travel our beautiful country picking ingredients from each and every tribe and then we can ask her to whip up the mother of all dishes. While she does this, we should start thinking about elevating things like the Rolex, Katogo and road side maize to national staple foods as well. This way, we shall have people from other countries picking up interest and probably visiting Uganda to be a part of the experience.
A bit of this and a bit of that
4. National Rest Days
In most places around the world, Saturday and Sunday are considered weekends. By Monday morning, most people have to start picking up pieces, dusting themselves off and trying to make themselves useful once again. This sucks! We ought to stretch the weekend from Friday afternoon to Monday afternoon so that we have enough time to recuperate from the damage of the weekend. When we lounge from Friday afternoon all the way until Monday afternoon, we shall have enough time to relax and enjoy this changing culture that we are actually discussing. Any office or organisation that decides to make its employees work anytime between Friday afternoon and Monday afternoon shall then be fined heavily – to send a message to everyone.
Pretty much the real deal
5. National Museum
We have an awesome national museum but we ought to do something about stocking it a little more. I see many people walk around with behaviour, clothing and attitudes that belong in the museum. Let’s throw some of these people into the museum. They can then be looked after in enclosed spaces as they attempt to tell their story to the world, the way Johnny Depp did in the movie Lone Ranger. We can have them looked after by stewards and Museum employees who will have the responsibility of making sure they are in top shape at all times. Also, we can have certain politicians and public figures join this lot as they seem to have been around since the days of the signing of the Buganda Agreement. These ones can tell stories from the past – first hand; without us having to Google anything or read books with distorted information.
Imagine this belle narrating a story to you
6. National Fashion
A country is nothing without a constitution but it also nothing without fashion. We ought to have a specific fashion trend that everyone adopts right from birth. There should be less clothing for females and absolutely no pants or long skirts for females with nice legs. We can also have some tit-bits like more cleavage showing tops for women, all official clothing being made out of sisal, children wearing plastic shoes, banning of weaves entirely and ugly men covering all their body parts up except their nose and eyes. This would go a long way in creating a more defined identity for Uganda as a country that appreciates and honours fashion, style and design. It goes without saying therefore that we would need a Minister of Fashion Style and Design and they would need to go around sensitising people on how to get their children into the system.
Imagine our female MPs walking into Parliament dressed like this. Awesome!
A few other recommended changes include having a National Car – the Vitz because it occupies very little space and can be abandoned anywhere in case of a traffic jam, changing the rules for joining the national football team so that every player who joins the national team MUST score a goal within 6 months of joining the team or be jailed for life as well as creating a national wifi policy so that any restaurant, office, shopping mall, hotel or public place has free wifi or risks being shut down. These are just some of the changes that the folks in Parliament should consider discussing in addition to the changing of the National Anthem.
Now Playing – Hugh Masekela’s Everything Must Change
I beg to move.
“The snake which cannot cast its skin has to die. As well the minds which are prevented from changing their opinions; they cease to be mind.” ― Friedrich Nietzsche
The Talkative Rocker
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