Democracy: Promiscuous Mistress

  Democracy. The mere mention of this word can induce joy and hope, rage and violence. Like love, democracy is a word that is used and abused by good and bad folks alike, depending on one’s perspective. Last week, democracy and its contradictions were on full display in Britain. Free to choose their fate, the […]

Surgery and operating rooms- the journey continues

In the blog on Caesarean Section in Buganda in 1879, we reproduce the report of a surgical delivery of a baby that was witnessed by Robert William Felkin, a medical student who was serving as King Mutesa’s personal physician. The advances in human surgery that have taken place over the intervening 130 years represent the proverbial […]

Caesarean section in Buganda in 1879

FROM THE TINGASIGA ARCHIVES: February 1, 1999 Dear Tingasiga: The last palace of Kabaka Mutesa I at Kasubi-Nabulagala, is perhaps the most visible evidence of the grandeur and sophistication of late nineteenth century Buganda. The visitor who beholds the architectural marvels of Muzibu-azaala-mpanga, Mutesa’s main residence at Kasubi-Nabulagala which is now a mausoleum for the […]

Photoessay of Traditional woven dinnerware

Here are examples of  three millet bread baskets from my part of the world (Rwanda and Kigezi).  They come in different sizes, shapes and decorations.  Please tell me about the baskets and other dinnerware  you use in your part of the world for serving millet bread. What stories can you share about these revered containers of oburo […]

Amaziina G’enogo and Millet Bread Etiquette of the Bakiga

  Few things are as culturally painful as watching a modern school-educated Mukiga or Munyankore eating oburo (millet bread) and enyama (meat). Out comes a knife and fork, delicately supported by soft, washed and well-oiled hands.  The millet bread, already pre-cut into small manageable pieces, is lifted from its container and gently placed on a […]

Ugandans for Peace must insist on non-violence

The news of the multiple murders of people in the military barracks at Makindye, Kampala, has left me deeply saddened. While the circumstances of the killings remain to be fully explained, the irreversibility of the deaths is a dark certainty that concentrates our minds on the ugliness of violence that has troubled our country for […]

Scrap academic requirements for MPs and other leaders

Academic qualifications are overrated as a measure of ability in political leadership. It was my stated view during the Constitution debates in 1994/95 that no citizen should be denied the right to seek any office simply because of arbitrary academic requirements. I continue to disagree with Articles in the Uganda Constitution that require possession of […]

Leaders should put Kigezi first, self last

Written in  January 2013 I have spent the last week in Kigezi, the one place I am happier than anywhere else on Earth.  The thick morning mist that gives way to glorious sunshine invariably triggers memories of a happy childhood spent exploring the mountains and valleys of Bushengyera, the southern part of Kigezi. Not even […]