Following the death of Arch Bishop Dr Cyprian Kizito Lwanga (may his soul rest eternally), the minister of information & national guidance Hon Judith Nabakooba came out to warn against propaganda & negative information regarding this death. This was as a result of many conspirous theories that have been circulating on social media regarding this death.
Hon Kyagulanyi the NUP President on his Facebook said, “Arch Bishop Lwanga joins several other outspoken religious leaders who have recently died under unclear circumstances”. Dr Besigye also wrote a long article highlighting on the same matter. These messages speak volumes, but it also resonates with what many other Ugandans believe regarding this death.
There are many who believe that the Arch Bishop didn’t die a natural death. Whereas their arguments or allegations may lack merit, logic or concrete evidence, its bad to sweep it under the carpet because it gives us a clear image of what the population think about their government.
In management, it’s advisable to always pay attention to “back ground noise”. Many times what people say informally represents their feelings & thoughts than what they say in formal meetings or engagements. Sweeping such information under the carpet would be like smearing a dirty child with cosmetics instead of cleaning him.
The reason why a huge section of Ugandans seem not to trust their government is as a result of how it has been handling or treating those opposed to it as well as public affairs.
It’s not a coincidence that hundreds of people that have been kidnapped or that have misteriously disappeared courtesy of security agencies are all from Buganda a region that voted against Gen Museveni. It’s not by coincidence that the majority of people who were arrested, harrased, tortured etc during the recent elections were from Buganda. It’s not by coincidence that it’s only those in opposition that are charged of inciting violence. It’s not by coincidence that it’s only NGOs critical of government whose licenses are cancelled. All those point to the fact that government doesn’t relate to it’s people very well.
So when an outspoken muganda prelate like Dr Lwanga who had once accused government of spying on him dies without a known illnesses, people will think twice before they take it as a natural death.
Suspicion even raises when many senior security officials have previously been murdered in cold blood & for years there are no reports convincingly explaining their death.
This poor relationship or negative perception of government affects many things. Attitude determines altitude, how people think about government determines how they relate with it & how they take up it’s programs & initiatives.
When government is doubted by it’s own people, it finds it hard to convince them to follow it’s programs.
Citizens deliberately refuse to pay taxes, they don’t trust public schools, travellers avoid flying with the national airline etc.
Police statements are doubted, courts systems & decisions are disputed & government policies opposed, the media reports negative stories more than positive stories & end up creating a bad brand for their country.
Local tourism is not embaraced & citizens don’t buy local products. The sense of patriotism & love for the country diminishes as people lose trust in government.
So government should not rebrand it’s image towards the population for the sake of political survival but rather for general development.
Government must change means of how it relates with it’s people. It should relate well with dissenting voices & demonstrate that it is ready to protect all it’s people regardless of their political affiliation. This will restore the lost trust & it’s in this spirit that we shall have national reconciliation, national consensus & build a prosperous developed country.
Muhimbise George, firstname.lastname@example.org, 0787836515.
The author is a member of Alliance For National Transformation Publicity Committee.
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