Talking to Ugandan voters shows many are angry and many are hopeless. Worryingly, they say they have no good reason to be happy.
They say they are educated. They say many of them are jobless. They complain that the current government has no deliberate plan for the wellbeing of young people. Before partying, one young man who graduated one year ago but is still on the streets looking for a job, told of how many have lost hope because leaders don’t seem to care ‘whether they live or die’.
United States president Barack Obama says: ‘The best way to not feel hopeless is to get up and do something. Don’t wait for good things to happen to you. If you go out and make some good things happen, you will fill the world with hope, you will fill yourself with hope.’
T.F. Hodgesaid, ‘To conquer frustration, one must remain intensely focused on the outcome, not the obstacles.’
Asking some young neighbours whether they participated in local government elections, one young girl said she does not see any reason why she should waste her time on things she lacked the power to change.
Something big has been happening during our elections week. There has been a clear rebellion against the establishment. A number of senior political leaders were defeated in the elections. And those who were felled, acted like they didn’t see it coming. Of course they didn’t see it coming but why didn’t they?
And has the establishment been so slow to see this deliberately or it also never saw it coming? Or is it because the president himself knew he would retain his office anyway? And therefore the senior politicians also believed they would, as has been in the past, be riding at his back? Where were they when the political terrain was changing before our eyes?
The establishment doesn’t seem to see that many Ugandans couldn’t care less about the hyped economic growth because they don’t see themselves as beneficiaries. And the establishment doesn’t seem to realize that what is happening is as a result of the fact that it has cut itself off from the lives of the majority of Ugandans. It is smart enough to understand that acknowledging the state of affairs would mean acknowledging its role in bringing all this about.
Whichever way the government looks at it, the ‘political revolution’ seems to have been set in motion by ‘the people against them’. You don’t have to look far to see who the first causalities are, do you?