Monday, December 31, 2012

CAR: The rebels advance ?

 Reuters reports

Central African Republic rebels say split over peace talks offer

 Soldiers from the Congolese contingent of the Central African Multinational Force (FOMAC) stand in formation as they arrive at an airport in Bangui, December 31, 2012.

Rebels in Central African Republic are split over whether to start peace talks with President Francois Bozize or carry on an assault to overthrow him, a spokesman said on Monday, leaving efforts to end the conflict hanging in the balance.

The Seleka insurgents had advanced to within 75 km (45 miles) of the mineral-rich country's capital Bangui and threatened to seize the city - until Bozize made a last ditch offer on Sunday to hold talks and share power with them.

"At the moment there are divisions within Seleka on this point," said Nelson Ndjadder, a France-based official for CPSK - one of the three main rebels movements in the Seleka alliance.
"Some want to keep fighting, but CPSK is ready to put down its weapons and talk," he added.
 Interesting in so far as the rebels were saying just a few days ago according to Africa Journalism the World
“We call on the boys and girls of the Central African Republic, on defence and security forces still loyal to the regime of François Bozizé…to lay down their arms immediately,” Séléka announced in a statement.
The rebels, who have so far encountered little resistance from the army, said that, “by the measure of security and the protection of civilians, we don’t consider it necessary to launch a battle for Bangui and send troops there, because General François Bozizé…has already lost control of the country.”
 Regional neighbours and CAR's former colonial ruler France have urged both sides to end the revolt in one of Africa's most conflict-prone regions, and the United States on Monday expressed fresh worry about the situation.
Their hopes appeared to take a hit earlier on Sunday when another Seleka spokesman, Eric Massi, said the group had rejected Bozize's proposal. But Ndjadder told Reuters Massi was not speaking for all of Seleka's fighters.
The problem isn't that the rebels that won't put down their aren't speaking for all but rather the reverse that those who will put down their arms aren't speaking for all.
Bangui residents, who have watched the rebels edge closer in three weeks of fighting, said they were still hoping for a deal.
"We are in fear and sadness because the war has stopped everything," said Germaine Panika, a 24-year-old history student in the ramshackle riverside city. She added she would spend New Year's Eve indoors because of a military curfew.
Hardly edging closer, rather desperately trying to keep up with the retreating regime forces would seem a more accurate description.
"All we want is for the people who are fighting to solve their problems without guns," said Felix Camere, a 45-year-old teacher. "It is ordinary people who are suffering from this crisis and we're tired," he told Reuters.
Seleka unites three rebel groups - CPJP, UFDR and CPSK - who have accused Bozize of reneging on a 2007 peace deal to give former fighters money in exchange for laying down their arms.
In Washington, U.S. State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said the United States is "deeply concerned about the deteriorating security situation."
"We call on the rebel alliance to cease hostilities and movements towards the capital. We also call on the rebels to ensure the safety of the civilian population," Nuland said in a statement.
"We urgently call on the CAR government to ensure that its security forces respect the human rights of the Central African people and foreign populations within the CAR," Nuland added.
Nuland said the United States is particularly concerned by allegations of "arrests and disappearances of hundreds of individuals who are members of ethnic groups" with ties to the Seleka alliance. "Those guilty of violations and crimes under international law must be held to account," Nuland said.
I think that we can continue to interpret that as US indifference.
Central African Republic is one of a number of countries in the region where U.S. special forces are helping local forces track down the Lord's Resistance Army, a rebel group which has killed thousands of civilians across four nations.
Chad and other neighbours agreed to send 360 troops to shore up CAR's army after a string of defeats this month.
The Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) already has more than 500 peacekeepers in CAR which, despite rich deposits of uranium, gold and diamonds, remains one of the least developed nations on the planet.
"Their mandate will be to secure the ceasefire between the rebels and the army," said the peacekeeping mission's commander Maurice Ntossui Allogo. He said 120 troops from Republic of Congo had arrived on Monday, and 240 soldiers from Gabon and Cameroon were due in the days to come.
Interestingly the link would suggest the DR Congo although I suspect it is Congo Brazzaville. 
Chad President Idriss Deby, who is also CEEAC's president, said on Monday the force could be used if rebels move past the town of Damara, some 75 km (45 miles) outside Bangui.
"The town of Damara is a red line that can't be crossed for any reason," he said.
The streets of Bangui were unusually quiet - many residents have fled by car or boat to neighbouring Congo.
Again I have no idea which Congo they are referring to. It could be either looking at the map. Unusual for Reuters. 
Soldiers with automatic rifles patrolled the streets and manned checkpoints while troops in French military uniform were deployed at strategic sites, including the Presidential Palace, a Reuters correspondent said.
France has reinforced its military presence in Bangui to around 600 soldiers from 150 in recent days, but says the force is to protect some 1,200 French citizens and other interests in the country, and not to defend Bozize.

DR Congo: The General is dead continued

Some thoughts on my last post " The General is dead "  which was no more than a translation via Google Translate on a news story from Mutaani .

The two English language versions of events when I goggled the Generals name are my translation post appearing from this blog and a further one on syndication to All Africa blogs which is a repeat of my post. So much for easy triangulation.

Congo Independent offers confirmation with three theories, again translated from French. 

The first is crime resulting in death and somewhat bizarrely concluding accidental death. I am guessing that is a translation problem. Shooting a guy in the abdomen strikes me as murder. I guess they mean that there is no political significance to the killing.

The second theory is murder. The General was taken down deliberately by  Congolese nationalists on the grounds that he was a Tutsi officer and his loyalty was to the rebels ( M23 ). He is apparently an outspoken officer and critical of incompetence, he also may be associated with a plot to assassinate President Kabila and has fallen victim of an internal power play. ( I hope like hell this is a total failure of Bing translate )

The third theory seems to enter the realms of fantasy. The General in this version is a Rwandan officer infiltrated into the Congolese army and eliminated by the Congolese resistance. Again in this version the General is a Tutsi.

Put simply the second and third theories seem utterly ridiculous. The  Mutaani report clearly states that the General had served in the Congolese army for 46 years. The French version seems to suggest that the General is in fact of Hutu ethnicity.

That the second and third theories seem so outlandish does not of course rule out political motivations for the killing. Why does a general considered valuable enough to warrant four bodyguards have none ?

Mutaani calls on the military justice system to solve the crime, that  is  would be hilarious if a man wasn't dead. If this was a political crime then General Alphonse Bikweto family will see no justice, on the other hand if it was a robbery gone wrong I guess there is hope.

Either way it would seem FARDC have lost one of the very few competent officers they had and the DR Congo have lost a servant the Nation can ill afford to lose.


The General is dead

From Mutaani
 Google Translate from French.

Anger, compassion and pride. Difficult to describe the feeling of a Congolese lambda, the announcement of the assassination on December 24, General Alphonse Bikweto, commander of the training center of Kota-koli in the province of Equator. Shot on a street in Kinshasa by unidentified armed men, this officer was tipped to Staff of ground forces to organize an offensive against the rebel M23 raging in North Kivu.This murder raises concerns after the speech of President Kabila, December 15, before the assembled parliamentarians in Congress which placed the country's defense priority. How to achieve this goal if for technicians and instructors tempering generals like Bikweto, Budja Mabe Mahele and etc.. disappear without it clarifies the causes of their deaths?No, there is not that bad leaders among the officers of the Congolese army (FARDC). General Bikweto embodied the exception. His studies demonstrated: after its formation in the United States in the ranks of special forces (Rangers) of the U.S. Army, he served as an instructor in various training center in the country.Back to factsMonday, December 24. Jamaica neighborhood in the town Kintambo. It is 21 hours. General Bikweto is walk. It is the common neighbor Bandalugwa. He is walking without an escort. He usually has four. That day, the Staff has sent a bodyguard. 100 meters from his residence on Avenue Bompette, he made a stop in front of a shop / café. In front of him, an electric cabin and money changers. The area is in the dark. Handymen trying to restore the current. General observes, sitting on a plastic chair.Suddenly, three people arise and try to extort money from traders, in front of the officer. Normally, the General responds interpelant the thugs "Hey you there, come here! ". Refusal to comply. One of them replied: "Who are you?". The officer will not end explained before one of them so his gun and shoots right over the general. A bullet in the right leg and a second in the chest. General Bikweto falls to the ground. The assassins approach the body, searching and retrieving his gun and biometric card military officer. Too late for the sole bodyguard committed to his residence to intervene a few meters away. It still surprises the assassins on the scene. They exchange shots. One of them will be affected, but soon his companions - in fact, they were more than three because the other out of their hiding places - returned to his aid to help him up by drawing gunfire to prevent to the inhabitants out of their homes. The general died of his injuries 22 hours.The demons of "Rwandophonie"General deceased being from North Kivu and Rutchuru territory, given the political context across the Democratic Republic of the Congo, everyone has their own ideas about the reasons for the crime. The media also. Some have speculated a planned assassination of a political execution. According to relatives of the deceased general interviewed by RFI "The assassination would seek execution-Congolese Hutu leaders to discredit the government by accusing Congolese to hunt all Rwandans." In his paper of the day, RFI correspondent fall: "This strategy should enable a balkanization of the DRC, through the creation of a province that does not live Hutu and Tutsi".The general was he speaking Kinyarwanda? False. Born in Lubumbashi January 26, 1948 at Camp Massart Major - Camp Vangu now - his father, Sergeant Ferdinand Bikweti is from the province of North Kivu, a group of Busanza, chiefdom Bwisha and Rutshuru. The group is backed Busanza Uganda. The language spoken is Kisanza, a variant of Kihutu spoken in Uganda.Worthy son to serve his countryThe assassination of General Alphonse Bikweto is not read from the perspective of a military officer of the "East" killed "the West." It would be a false reading and easy shortcut to divide the country useless. Present as a Congolese "Kinyarwanda expression" by the short time that is neither more nor less give weapons to rebels besieging M23 for over nine months the village of the victim. It is also strengthening the argument that the soldiers from this corner of the republic would be insecure and therefore, impossible for them to leave the East to find work elsewhere. Present as illustrated disappeared would imply also that he was in cahoots with M23 when in reality it is not. This misrepresentation of the late General could cover their tracks and tarnish the image of this worthy son of the country who worked under the Congolese flag for nearly forty six years.Unlike M23 rebels who refuse to leave North Kivu, fearing for their safety in the West, General Bikweto is a model in this regard: He worked bravely across the Congo except in his own province and has never been a reason for the rebellion and goodwill.Or sponsored heinous crime?One thing is certain: If the crime is heinous, is that the general was, that night, at the wrong time and the wrong place. If, for cons, it is sponsored, the crime could be the work of some senior members of the Congolese army, the enemies of the nation who do not want to hear about the change in the chain of command is the DRC. A closer look at the curriculum vitae of the deceased general, there were the officers of this caliber dto carry out the assault to liberate the territory of Rutshuru in rebel hands. Such appointment, if it were to - do you never know! - Could create jealousy within the Congolese military hierarchy. General Bikweto has trained many current generals and colonels of the army which followed the normal curriculum. Jealous would be in the ranks of the incompetent, the military top brass without extensive studies required.Ultimately, it is now up to the military justice system do its work in carrying out its investigations to inform national and international opinion on this crime. This is it let us know if you are facing a heinous crime or sponsored by whom?We firmly believe that farde of these investigations into the assassination of General will not arise on batteries other folders initiations before them.Share Email

Saturday, December 29, 2012

CAR : How long will the Regime last ?

Capital FM  ( Kenya ) reports

C. Africa army retreat puts rebels one step from capital 


BANGUI, Dec 29 – Rebels in the Central African Republic, defying mediation efforts, on Saturday seized another town in their advance on the capital, forcing an army retreat and putting them just one town away from Bangui.

The rebels, who already have control of four other regional capitals in the centre and north of the country, faced no resistance as they entered the town of Sibut around 150 kilometres from Bangui, a military source told AFP.


Officials on both sides said the rebels of the so-called Seleka coalition had also repelled army soldiers trying to recapture Bambari, a former military stronghold in the landlocked country, one of the world’s poorest despite vast mineral wealth.

The Seleka coalition are in effect rebels who had  been integrated into the Central African Republic army and have subsequently left due to perceived grievances with the government. The parallels with the DR Congo / M23 situation are fairly stark.

A military official described “extremely violent” fighting over the town, with detonations and heavy weapons fire audible to witnesses some 60 kilometres away.

The rebel advance on Sibut, also a base for Chadian soldiers stationed in the country, forced government forces and their allies to retreat to Damara, 75 kilometres from Bangui and the last major town on the road to the southwestern capital.

“The rebels entered Sibut. There was no fighting, the Central African Armed Forces (FACA) stationed there and the Chadian troops left the town last night (Friday) for Damara,” the military official told AFP.

The bottom line is that the CAR military are a joke. All real fire power is reserved for the presidential guard.

Djouma Narkoya, a Seleka leader, claimed that the army suffered “losses” in the fighting for Bambari, while the rebel side had “one killed and three injured” in the fighting.
“We are continuing to progress,” he added.

Sibut residents arriving in Bangui said they saw around 60 Chadian and Central African army vehicles converging on Damara late on Friday.

Damara is on the road to Bangui about the half way point from Sibut. It looks like a fairly comprehensive routing. 

One of the towns under the control of the rebels, who launched their offensive in early December, is the garrison town and key diamond mining hub of Biraosince.

Former colonial power France, meanwhile, boosted its military presence to 400 on Friday with the deployment of 150 paratroopers to Bangui airport, and the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) announced reinforcements.
French Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault stressed again on Friday that French troops were there only to protect French and European nationals, not fight the rebels.

I don't think the ECCAS forces are going to be to interested in holding back the rebels. Western powers are not going to get involved. The US has some military advisors on the ground assisting Ugandan forces searching out the remnants of the Lords Resistance Army and leader Joseph Kony.

Regional efforts to mediate a peaceful solution in the landlocked equatorial country were at a standstill.

A day after announcing that the rebels and the government had agreed to hold unconditional peace talks and that more regional troops would head to the country, ECCAS said no dates had been set for either move.
The bloc’s foreign ministers will meet again next Thursday “and that is when they will announce a date for the meeting in (the Gabonese capital) Libreville,” ECCAS’s communications director Placide Ibouanga told AFP, referring to talks between rebels and the government.

I wouldn't expect more regional troops to deploy. That leaves Chad.

The coalition of three rebel movements known as Seleka – or the “alliance” in the Sango language – says the government has not fulfilled the terms of peace pacts signed in 2007 and 2001, providing for disarmament and social reintegration for insurgents, including pay.
Central African President Francois Bozize, who took power in a 2003 coup, has twice been elected into office.

Elected is being generous.

Bozize’s appeals for help from France and from the United States to fight the rebels have fallen on deaf ears.
Neighbouring Chad, which has helped Bozize with rebellions in 2010, earlier sent a contingent to the country, however.

Unlike the DR Congo the west has not invested heavily in legitimising the regime electorally if it should fall so be it would seem to be the prevailing attitude.

In Bangui, food prices have soared, further spiking tensions and uncertainty.
“I’m afraid of the rebels coming,” said vegetable vendor Euphrasie Ngotanga in the city’s huge Sambo market. “We’re not going to sell our produce if there’s no peace. And then how we will feed our children?”
“We don’t eat properly anymore,” said another vendor, Angele Bodero, with her baskets full of condiments before her. “Cassava has become more expensive, everything costs more,” she said, referring to the country’s staple food.

A bag of cassava has risen nearly 50 percent from 13,000 CFA francs to 18,000 FCFA ($26 to $32).
“We need peace so we can work and get by,” said elderly vendor Jean Guere, trying to sell the flour sifters he makes himself.

I am guessing that that is for a 100 kg bag and I gather it is not dissimilar to what is being paid in Goma DR Congo.


DR Congo: Hurry up and wait.

Press TV reports

Decision on neutral force for Congo delayed 

The notion of the international neutral force was first adopted by the heads of state and government of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) in July 2012.

A meeting held in Addis Ababa , Ethiopia attended by defense ministers and military chiefs from Africa ended without any conclusions on when or how the recommended contingent of 4000 troops will be dispatched to Congo.

The predictions that the force would be on the ground by January are starting to look a little hollow.  

This was because they needed to figure out how to link the neutral force to the already existing United Nations force of MONUSCO.

But even as the process seems to be dragging, Uganda which has been at the forefront of the negotiations between and the Congolese government and the March 23 rebels says there is still hope for Congo. 

It is difficult to take the African neutral force seriously at this stage. The composition and numbers have changed several times. How on earth it will operate with MONUSCO and the narrow interpretation they seem to take on their mandate is beyond me.

The United Nations is also reportedly doing its own investigations on the mandate of the existing MONUSCO force, its size, deployment requirements, assets, resources, the aspects of which will be presented before a scheduled meeting on January 9th, 2013, to decide on the fate of the newly proposed international neutral force. 

There seems to be an agenda of do nothing developing which is ironic.

After deliberations on the 8th of January, the preparatory work will be passed over to the Peace and Security Council, and then shared with the UN chief. Ban Ki-moon is expected to include the Africa’s recommendations in his own ones that present them to the UN Security Council.

The outcome of the military discussions was included in a paper that each delegation took back home to seek opinion from their higher government levels. This means that Congo may have to wait much longer for the military aid that it needs so much to maintain peace, especially in its eastern region.

Sad to say no real surprises here.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Uganda: Cardinal sin and carnal desires

New Vision ( Uganda ) reports

Outlaw prostitution - Cardinal Wamala

By Paul Kiwuuwa   
Emmanuel Cardinal Wamala has expressed worry over Government failure outlaw prostitution.

 “People no longer care about their lives. They behave as if HIV does no longer exist. They are just money minded, yet prostitution spreads HIV virus,” Wamala said.

Actually unsafe sex spreads the HIV virus. Prostitution per-say has very little to do with the spread of HIV. Legalisation of prostitution makes it far easier to control from a public health perspective. In Uganda it would seem it is currently not  illegal but not legalised  ( something that surprised me )  In many ways that is the worst senario. Legalising it would allow resourses to be targeted towards prostitutes just simple stuff like free condoms and sex education on the risks associated with working in the sex industry and how to mitigate those risks.    

“It is a shame that when one goes to streets of major towns in Uganda, young children are indulging in prostitution; what the Government is doing about it.” Wamala added.

Agreed. It is terrible to think that children are participating in the sex industry but legalisation of the industry allows for regulation. Uganda seems to waste resources interfering in its citizens bedrooms with pointless legislation whilst avoiding opportunities to make changes that will have a positive effect for the nations future. 

His remarks follow a recent Uganda HIV/AIDS report which indicated that the HIV/ADIS prevalence rate shot up from 6.4% in 2005 to 7.3% as of September last year.

That is a worrying trend and outlawing prostitution will have the opposite effect  the Cardinal desires. Outlawing prostitution will infact just drive the industry underground. Why is it that Uganda persists in believing that if you pass a law then you will resolve a situation ? Many western nations have tried these " solutions " they failed miserably why will the result be different in Uganda or for that matter anywhere in the world.

This trend was attributed to promiscuity, where more people are having multiple sex partners.

So why blame prostitution ? Uganda wake up, people have sex I hate to break this to you but banning prostitution, killing gays as well as having a stupid age of legal consent is doing nothing but criminalising your people. 

In his Christmas sermon at St Peter’s Catholic Church Nsambya a city suburb, Wamala also expressed fear over increasing cases of abortion.

He criticized some parents who neglect their role of nurturing their children, which has contributed to the moral decay and family breakdown.

The Cardinal is concerned that many parents leave their children under the care of house maids without proper nurturing. “It is good to work but spare some time for your children,” the prelate advised.

The Cardinal needs to get out and smell the roses.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

DR Congo: Who the fuck is Melissa Stusinski ?


The Inquisitr reports

DR Congo Boat Sinks, 140 Feared Dead

Posted: December 24, 2012

By Melissa Stusinski

A boat sank on a river in the Democratic Republic of Congo on Wednesday, leaving 140 feared dead, according to officials in the African country.

The accident occurred on the Kasai River, which is a tributary of the Congo river, in the province of Bandundu. Lambert Mende, the country’s information minister, stated that the vessel was overloaded when it capsized and that 80 people have already been confirmed dead.

As an Africa watcher and in particular a DR Congo watcher this story came at me out of left field. I was looking for more information on the maritime accident of the 21/12/12, that most would be aware of and is reported via CNN below. Interestingly I turned up this on the accident Melissa reports as breaking news.

It was overloaded and sank outside the town of Mangutuka, about 74 miles east of Kinshasa, the capital, said Lambert Mende, the government information minister. He said the river was unusually low at the time the boat ran aground.

The problem for Melissa is that this was reported by Associated Press July 30 2010. There are many other reports confirming the July 30 2010 report but I can't find one confirming Melissa's story of last Wednesday.

The BBC reports that the Democratic Republic of Congo has few roads and rail links because of decades of conflict in the region. Because of this, people often travel on overloaded boats.

That she is citing the BBC to confirm the blindingly obvious about the DR Congo transport network caught my attention to say the least.

Mende stated that the river level was low at the time of the accident and that the accident was caused when the boat hit a mud bank.

Officials have recovered 76 survivors of the 180 official passengers it had been carrying. He added, however, that several more people likely boarded the boat illegally for a trip down the river.

So the question is who the fuck is Melissa Stusinski ?

Melissa grew up in the Seattle area, but moved to Indiana to attend Anderson University in 2005 and was editor at the school's Literary Arts Magazine for two years. When she is not writing for The Inquisitr, Melissa loves to read, crochet, make jewelry, and work on cars. Follow Melissa on Google+ and Twitter . [Contact:]

At the risk of sounding nasty and quite probably a misogynist, the journalistic world would be better served if Ms Stusinski stuck to crochet or jewelry making, in fact learning how to read would actually be a large step forward for her.

Melissa has been in touch with me and I accept her assertion.

" At the same time, before making the assertion that, "in fact learning how to read would actually be a large step forward for her," I would request that you read other articles I have written. In doing so, you may change your mind and see that this situation is an incredibly rare one."

CNN notes that another boat accident occurred on Friday along the Congo River near Maluku, in which nine people are confirmed dead.
Officials report that about 100 people are still missing in that accident in which more than 200 people survived. The vessel was carrying several tons of merchandise and went down when it struck an obstacle.

This of course was the story I was interested in finding out more about and there is little new information available in English as yet. French news sites might well provide further insight. I could forgive Melissa if I thought she had genuinely confused the two stories but clearly she hasn't. She styles herself as a journalist, if she was a blogger again I would be far more forgiving.
Papy Epiano, the mayor of Maluki, stated that authorities had yet to obtain a copy of the ship’s manifest because “we haven’t seen the general or the commander.” Epiana addd, “We have recovered nine bodies since Friday.”

Boat accidents are not uncommon along the rivers of the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The only news of any value in the Inquisitr report by Melissa is from CNN. She offers no opinion, she shows no research skills. It is not my habit to attack the media ( politicians are far better game ) but Melissa prove me wrong or issue a correction and an apology to the people of the DR Congo. They are poorly served by politicians, they have a right to expect better from the fourth estate and new media.

I would have been happier if Melissa had acknowleged the error in her update.

Uganda: A brave new world.

The Daily Monitor ( Uganda ) reports

Woman gets 7 years for defiling 16-year-old boy

                                         Sarah Nekesa (R) talks to a prison wardress.

The mood was dull with very few people at the magistrate’s court in Entebbe. And at about 10:30am, Sarah Nekesa, 30, was led to the courtroom while covering her face with a veil shying away from journalists who were taking pictures.

That suggests that this is an issue of indifference to Ugandans I hope when the severity of the sentence sinks in that some in the community realise that a grave injustice has been done to Sarah Nekesa.

Chief Magistrate Joyce Kavuma called Nekesa to read out her sentence. Prosecution requested the magistrate to give Nekesa a deterring punishment. “She has children to look after but she needs to be given a deterring sentence not to do it again,” Entebbe Resident State Attorney Cate Basuuta said.

Chief Magistrate Joyce Kavuma clearly has no understanding of the psychology and physiology of  16 year old males.  State Attorney Cate Basuuta clearly couldn't give a shit about the rights of children she had the ability to bring about a rational outcome to this situation and chose not to. I would have expected that with both a female prosecuter and judge they might have performed better but it would seem that Sarah might well have been better to have been judged by men who would recognise on the facts as presented to date clearly indicate no crime of any consequence has occured here.

The defendant’s lawyer, Ivan Ssekyanzi, however, said since the suspect is a is a first-time offender who is remorseful, she should be given a lenient sentence.

I have pointed out it is a fucking stupid law, it limits freedom and sexual expression until 18 years of age. Most of the world would be criminalised by this law if it was applied to adolescents. Sarah Nekesa is a political prisoner, unjust and stupid laws are not the hallmark of a society that is moving forward and embracing the modern world. When will Uganda realise the state has no place in the bedroom when the situation involves people able to give informed consent ? 

Ms Kavuma in her sentence said: “You are a first offender and haven’t wasted court’s time by pleading guilty. We know you have children to look after but you should have played a parental role to protect vulnerable children. “Defilement attracts a maximum punishment of life imprisonment and to consider your plight, court sentences you to seven years imprisonment but you have right to appeal”.

How the fuck did Ms Kavuma a woman clearly lacking in any compassion or understanding of the human condition, rise to the rank of Chief Magistrate ?
" I can imagine myself on my death-bed, spent utterly with lust to touch the next world, like a boy asking for his first kiss from a woman." Aleister Crowley

For some time, Nekesa stood in the dock, not believing what the magistrate had said before tears started rolling down her face. According to the charge sheet, Nekesa committed the offence on October 15 in Mutungo Village, Makindye Sabagabo Sub-county in Wakiso District.

If we are to judge people by their contribution to society this case illustrates clearly that Sarah Neskesa has contributed more and been a far less destructive force on Ugandan society than Chief Magistrate Joyce Kavuma and State Attorney Cate Basuuta. The transition from adolescent male to adult is not an easy one.

Monday, December 24, 2012

DR Congo: Random thoughts.

"Atrocity is recognized as such by victim and perpetrator alike, by all who learn about it at whatever remove. Atrocity has no excuses, no mitigating argument. Atrocity never balances or rectifies the past. Atrocity merely arms the future for more atrocity. It is self-perpetuating upon itself---a barbarous form of incest. Whoever commits atrocity also commits those future atrocities thus bred. "
--- The Apocrypha of Muad'Dib
Frank Herbert

Rwanda: Just how stupid do they think we are ?

New Times ( Rwanda ) reports.

Q & A: My job is challenging but it’s worth it – Speaker Mukantabana

                                                          Rose Mukantabana

TNT: What about the achievements in your oversight function?
We exercise oversight according to a constitutional provision, which requires the Prime Minister to appear at least once during each ordinary session to brief Parliament on the work of the Executive. This year the Prime Minister focused mainly on agriculture, education, health, and more recently, energy. These sectors constitute the wheels of our country’s development agenda.

It was very interesting and helpful for Parliament. First of all, we want to know what is going on in the Executive. And then, it helps us follow up at the grassroots.

But we also met with three ministers; the ministers of foreign affairs, finance, and defence, on this issue of the conflict in eastern DRC. The information they gave Parliament was very helpful.

After that consultative meeting, we set up a committee to investigate the sources of the false allegations that Rwanda backs the (M23) rebels in that country.

Interesting that she brought it up. DR Congo and Rwanda's support is well documented and yet she persists in trying to sell the lie. New Times is very much a propaganda tool of the Rwandan authorities.

TNT: In June, MPs from both Chambers condemned MONUSCO (UN Mission in the Congo) for similar allegations against Rwanda, and called on the UN to investigate whether the Mission was breaching its mandate by allegedly conniving with negative forces like the FDLR militias blamed for the Genocide against the Tutsi. What do you hope to achieve through the committee you have set up?
  We expect an added value because as the ministers explained, this situation in DRC is not a situation created by Rwanda. It is not even a situation that will be solved by Rwanda. It is a DRC problem but we continue to ask ourselves why the international community blames the situation of DRC on Rwanda.

And the international community continues to point to all the evidence that catagorically proves Rwandan support for M23.

Even as our government has explained, and provided a thorough rebuttal with proof that Rwanda is not involved with the M23 rebellion, the international community continues to say that it is Rwanda [supporting the rebels]. We want to go deep, as Parliament, into the documentation, reports and so on, and make our own analysis of this situation and, thereafter, we will compile and analyse every related information – the documents and reports from the UN, other international organisations and the rebuttal by Rwanda to the UN, and then ascertain the real problem.

We are not challenging the explanations from the ministers, not at all. We want to make sure we have clarity on why the international community continues to harass Rwanda, as a country, over this situation in DRC.

The purpose of parliamentary democracy is of course for the parliament to scruitinise the actions of the executive, so one has to laugh at the assertion that the house ( parliament ) " is not challenging.... the ministers " but rather has adopted the role of a lap dog and denied the evidence of the international community.

TNT: One school of thought is that there are external (western) players who do not wish to see the DRC at peace because that would put their own interests in jeopardy. What is your take? Yes I have heard that school of thought articulated many times, I assume the western players refered to are the same western players that have suspended Rwandan aid for its support for M23.

We want, particularly, to have a clear overview of this situation; digging deep will also help us, as parliamentarians, because through our parliamentary diplomacy we work with other parliaments and, maybe, other parliaments all over the world don’t even know what the real situation is or what is behind this situation.

Through parliamentary diplomacy, and using a report by the parliament, we can convince our counterparts in different forums, instead of using reports from other institutions.
Now that is a novel idea, the parliament is going to dig deep and work with other parliaments to reveal to those parliaments what the situation is, whilst at the same time denying the reports of institutions like the UN Security Council. If that is orwellian enough for you, you have the even more comical situation that as of January 2013 Rwanda takes up the African seat on the Security Council, a body it clearly has no faith in but lobbied like hell to get elected to.  

We want to make our own analysis of the situation and then meet other legislators, we can talk and tell them what the situation is, but based on our own findings. That is the reason why we set up that committee.

I suspect other legislators will have no interest in meeting with the most accompished liars ( in their own view ) of East Africa. If you have nothing better to do like say watching the grass grow, go have a read.