Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Chaka Mchaka in Rwenzori Uganda. Sounds awful.

A total of 350 students of Kisinga Vocational Secondary school in Kisinga sub-county in Kasese district were on Monday passed out as young cadres after undergoing military training commonly known as Chaka Mchaka for two weeks.
The pass out at Kisinga playground was presided over by Defense Minister Dr. Crispus Kiyonga who urged the students to use the acquired skills to analyze situations and intervene in situations that may lead the country into danger.
They could start by examining the corruption that is rife under the Museveni regime that is already leading the country into danger. 
Dr. Kiyonga said that the reason why the NRM government takes cadres through Chaka Mchaka is to avail more Ugandans with management skills where by the cadres can help in conflict resolution in the community.
I am guessing he means simple things like human rights violations. Like the ones the Ugandan government is about to inflict on gay members of the Ugandan community
He said that nationals who complete Chaka Mchaka are able to defend themselves and the territory adding that with such groups in place, there is no enemy who shall ever defeat the government of Uganda giving an example of the ADF insurgence where civilians participated to flash it out.
“There is no enemy that can defeat the government of Uganda because the trained cadres in the country have showed their potential to working hand in hand with the UPDF as seen from the ADF experience when the people of Kasese got guns and wiped rebels off.
So effectively a militia with the role of suppressing internal descent by it's very existence and eliminating any outward expression of that descent by force of arms if necessary. I assume that the state will use these  forces as a substitute for the military that can be better deployed earning remittances for Uganda by operating in African hot spots on behalf of the UN. See Lesley on Africa " Playing chicken with the UN, Uganda threatens to withdraw from peacekeeping operations " 
So these cadre trainings are not a joke as other people think but for the purpose of building the spirit of patriotism among the Ugandans who have the country at heart”. Dr. Kiyonga said.
Dr. Kiyonga said that the current Uganda needs to be stable for transformation and development, lamenting that most of the fifty years of independence have been under conflict.
I am not so sure that turning your citizens into para militaries is the way forward with regard to reducing conflict.
The Resident District Commissioner Lt. Milton Odongo urged the cadres to be agents of good change by mobilizing more people to support the NRM government and its development programs.
Lt. Odongo asked the cadres not to use the military skills and tricks attained at the training by making a U-turn and fight the government.
“We have not trained you to use the attained military skills to turn against the government and fight it. But you are being commissioned as agents of good change in the communities where you come from”. Lt. Odongo said.
That is a risk that could possibly happen. If you are prepared to exercise repression over your population whilst at the same time giving them the skills to fight oppression you could well be playing with fire. The issues Africa seems unable to come to terms with is the youth of the African population ( average age 29 ) and the inevitable globalization of the world happening at an ever increasing pace. Add to this the ever increasing influence of the African diaspora along with forecast population growth it seems to me that there will have to at some point be a conflict between the Africa of Defence minister Kiyonga and the new Africa.
Ms. Salima Biira the course leader while presenting the young patriots report said that they have learn a lot of things that including handling a fire arm, military drills, the political history of Uganda, the role of the army and police, the NRM manifesto and information  management.
The chief guest handed over gifts and certificates to best candidates Bernard Thembo and Salima Biira (Discipline), Denis Kule and Lakeri Biira (drills), Pascal Kiiza and Janet Ithungu (target range), Landas Muhindo and Neverles Kabugho (gun stripping and assembling).
I have no doubt that this is an attempt to influence the population through patriotism but the most effective way to build a stable society is to create a strong middle class with a real interest in the success of their society. You don't achieve that through corruption. 
The two week cadre course attracted several dignitaries to present papers including Rwenzururu King Charles Wesley Mumbere and Kasese district chairman Lt. Col. Mawa Muhindo.
The young cadres also had a lecture on the performance of the National Agricultural Advisory Services by the district NAADS coordinator Ms. Annet Biira.
Maj. Jonathan Ochom who has been the chief instructor at the training said that the students were enthusiastic and determined to finish their course.
Yes well I must admit I would be desperate to finish any course that involved military style drills and military style discipline. That probably isn't a fair comparison though.
Nearly the same number of students however did not participate in the Chaka Mchaka in what the government officials suspect they should have been ill advised by members of the opposition because Kisinga sub-county is a staunch area for Forum for Democratic Change.
Interesting that there is politicisation even at this level.


  1. Thanks for the input to the original story on my blog Hamish. You can contact me on e-mail. Kahunguofagie@gmail.com or tel +256 774041548
    The Owner the blog. Get informed on what is going on in the Rwenzori region

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