Last night on BBC Africa, a discussion ensued between Wycliffe Sande, founder of Sandfield Travel, Zine Magubane, an associate professor of Sociology in Boston College and the show host following the self-serving nature of Voluntourism. Case in point- the lousy recount of a one, Louise Linton.
Zine brought up something very important. Voluntourism makes us forget that there are structural breakdowns in our economies that we do not address and this only makes it look like it’s an individual’s problem to solve not a state problem. Wycliffe went ahead to say that when one person is helped, they help their community so it’s not all bad- communities grow with this new age tourism. Domino effect-you know how that story goes.
*Pause*- Actually this made me think of everything else but Voluntourism.
I love what Wycliffe said there but we are going to have to be very honest with ourselves on how this really works out. We are a selfish people and I’m not talking about the selfishness of people who seat near aisle seats in a taxi but refuse to put a seat down for you even if you are carrying two bucketloads, a small country and 3 suitcases.
The look you might get as you bend with the suitcases and 5 children
….and if you have chickens or cough…
(images from Google)
But hey…that’s “treatable”. I’m talking about deep rooted, disturbing selfishness. Not to say that there aren’t any selfless people. We do have our Mother Theresas, and in this case a Wycliffe Sande. We just have to admit that for every 10 people we have 2 Wycliffes and 8 Every-man-for-himself-and-God-for-us-all people.
Yesterday I watched a video on Facebook that got quite the buzz. It was a video of our lovely Speaker of Parliament, a learned lady, an aunt of the nation- [because we already have a first lady for the mother position who is busy with Lokodo’s current findings and probably in the midst of a resultant spiritual battle]. She said with a face so straight that if the public was squealing over cars for MPs that cost 150 million shillings a car, then the government should buy cars that cost UGX 450m. That kind of “constructive” criticism is not welcome because the 150 million a car thing is government doing some cost cutting. Ugandans should therefore be more than elated that it is 2016 and someone out there worries about costs. But if Ugandans do not appreciate those little gestures then how about a 450 million a car bill. PS; We have over 300 MPs-hitting that 400 marks real soon.
…..Anyone reading this who isn’t Ugandan must be thinking we are the original ballers, shot-callers, brawlers who be dippin’ in the Benz with spoilers.
Last week, Arua Regional Referral Hospital put up a notice to public so people don’t carry their patients to the hospital expecting to get some 5 star service yet sutures, catheters, N.G Tubes, cannulas of all gauges, admin syringes, cotton wool [guys-there is no cotton wool in a referral hospital], gauze, plasters, POP, bandage cotton, ultrasound gel and other drugs are out of stock.
(image from Facebook)
This is a referral hospital. These are basics items. This hospital is in the same country where MPs want 150 million shilling cars. The people do not need to “cooperate with staff”
150 million a car vs purchase of basic needs for a hospital –hmmm
(gif from Google)
…And that’s me forgetting that I have to run around Kampala on Sunday morning till my lungs jump out so we raise money for safer cancer treatment. It’s good exercise I know, a good cause-so St Peter can update those records, but then again this is not supposed to be an individual’s problem. It’s a state problem but everything around here is so When-Push-comes-to-Shove.
By the way, are we still buying that porn detecting machine??? With the current set up of things, I feel like that might be tomorrow’s news. Like “in today’s top story- the Minister of Ethics presents a status report regarding the procurement of the porn detecting machine. More of that after the break”
Well I’m just going to go ahead and blame the cause of all this insanity on the water. It must be the water we are drinking. It all starts with you seating next to the aisle seat in a taxi and pretending to be armless. That’s a major symptom and before you know it you’re whole prioritisation process is distorted.
Watch out for the signs guys. Look out for those signs and treat it early.
Now I must indulge in another form of nourishment- this lovely vanilla milkshake from Mocca, a friend of mine got me today.
Stay gold good people.