After 10 minutes 43 seconds Paul Kafeero crowns his mastery as a great critique to social addictions, ‘Dipo Nazigala’ traverses the journey to addiction, its effects, the vantages and disadvantages. His guitar strum perfection aside, the rich of poetics digs deep into thought and analytics of why we really should offer raw deals to addictions, his angle being alcohol.
The song slowly glides through my earphone speakers into the Kampala city we live in today. We have been accustomed to taking sides as we rush to join this fight addiction of Jennifer Musisi Vs Loodi/Lord/Road Mayor and or Meeya Erias Lukwago. Big corporations now advertise their products as a Musisi ready to fight your scarcity (a Lukwago), radio presenters gloss over it with their imported accents, the papers fling it from Musisi to Lukwago and back to Musisi, the taxi conversations thread it, the pastors, preachers and Imams can barely avoid it in their sermons, courts of law feed their justice papers on its ink, lately the kids can be heard chanting it in their plays, comedians cackle our ribs with it and the politicians I need not mention.
However behind the Lukwago-Musisi fight, is a clout of political party rivalry powdering the bullets.
In the blue corner of this fight weighing less pounds obviously is Erias Lukwago, a prominent lawyer turned politician backed by the cries of low-class city dwellers and in the red corner with the clout of big corporations, money bags and the country’s only visionary Jenniffer Musisi, also a lawyer who slowly veers her way into politics when she is not bringing down buildings or chasing around vendors.
The ring upon which they pounce is Kampala city potholes, intolerable traffic jams, gaping manholes swallowing unsuspecting walkers, open stinking sewers, widespread slums, poor healthcare, lousy schools and a mess of a city.
As the fight heats up, the political arm of the authority has taken it’s due vacation, the technocrats now decide what is right for who is right to have it.
The words of Kafeero and his later death can only point to one thing – Fight it or it kills you. As we cheer on Lukwago or Musisi, a city remains strewn with garbage which is not hazardous to Lukwago in his 300mn land-rover or Musisi in her 300mn vehicle, it is to me and you that brave the chaff of the city streets each morning, brushing off unemployed youths who pick our pockets as we make our way to dangerous mechanical condition taxis hitting us in pot-holes as they drive us to out poorly-planned buildings that house our offices. The ferocity of their fight drags down our health as we munch on road-side maize washed in a Nakivub0-channel roasted by a peasant farmer struggling to place their son in a lousy primary school.
The chaff is for you and me that swim through the Kampala floods on boda-bodas emitting dangerous gas to the environment as they over-charge us for the lack of a standard fee, then later throng us to the ground and we end up in a health centre with no medication as we bleed to our death!
The danger of Musisi and Lukwago fighting is not to the disadvantage of any other but me and you.
Isn’t it time we closed our ‘dipos’ to these fights? Shouldn’t we grant Kafeero’s poetics another day on the Kampala streets?