The Observer (Kampala)

Uganda: Wolokoso - Restaurant Bill Angers Minister

Anyone who thought that ministers and NRM cadres 'are in the thing' and therefore splash the cash with abandon may have to think again.

At least not with the rising commodity prices in Kampala. For as prices rise and some businesspeople become hungrier, there is a temptation to target big shots for making a quick buck. One person they will find with eyes wide open is Vincent Nyanzi, the state minister in the office of the vice-president.

On December 30, the good minister had lunch with a beautiful lady - she could have been his daughter, sister, or simply constituent, it does not matter. The restaurant where they went, on Dewinton road, however, terribly upset the 'honourable' MP from Busujju county.

"How much is our bill?" a calm Nyanzi asked a waiter, who promptly answered: "It is Shs 25,000 sir."

The minister would have none of this broad daylight robbery - at least that is how he saw it.

"What? What is it that we have eaten to pay you such colossal sum of money? My God! Have you seen how all people in Uganda have become thieves? How can you tell me to pay you such an amount of money which can buy a bunch of bananas for a family for just two plates of chips and two bottles of soda?" he asked, visibly livid.

The sister with the honourable tried to calm him down, but the big man wanted to fight this injustice a little further.

"No... no... I will never come back here if they don't revise their prices," Nyanzi said.

Well, munange honourable, that is how we ordinary mortals suffer at the hands of some of these restaurateurs. Gavumenti etuyambe!

Mwenda loves haters

Flamboyant political commentator Andrew Mwenda may look like someone who takes no prisoners, but he says he actually loves his critics.

The budding media entrepreneur, who often calls himself the old man of Tooro, revealed his love for his critics on December 31, after some NTV viewers demanded his removal from the News Night programme, where he features between Tuesday and Thursday every week.

"I love my haters and I want to call on all my haters to continue because some people can decide to promote your work by criticising it," he said.

"And that is how Museveni marketed The Independent for us when we were starting it. We knew which buttons to press on Museveni to react and he reacted by imprisoning us, which gave us free space in different media houses yet we didn't have money to advertise."

So, woe to Mwenda's haters. Hate him, he wins; like him, he wins!

Capt Mukula's Twitter prowess!

Soroti Municipality MP Mike Mukula appears to have zeroed on tweeting as one of his pastimes during Parliament's long Christmas recess. And the nature of his tweets made him some sort of 'Twitter counsellor'.

On Friday, December 27, Mukula, for instance, served up ample wise counsel.

"The way you carry yourself will most often determine how you are treated..." Mukula wrote on his Twitter page.

Other tweets followed, in quick succession: "Anger and emotion are strategically counterproductive..."

"If change is necessary, make it feel like a gentle improvement on the past...."

Mukula's tweetmates - or followers -tickled him to justify some of his comments, but he just tweeted on.

"Everyone admires the bold; no one honours the timid...." he wrote, concluding: "If you are unsure of the course of action, do not attempt it......."

Well, Mukula once 'threatened' to stand for president in 2016, but we no longer hear much about that. Some would say he was perhaps unsure; but perhaps not!

MP Ssekikubo fears after all!

We might be forgiven for thinking that outspoken people such as Lwemiyaga MP Theodore Ssekikubo do not fear anyone or anything. But this may not be the case, as Ssekikubo revealed last week.

Chatting up parliamentary guards on Tuesday, as the year came to an end, Ssekikubo said: "We have overcome 2013... I didn't know that we shall enter 2014 when we [rebels] are still MPs but we have made it by the grace of God."

He added: "We are going to continue offering ourselves in whatever way we can because our country will continue to be misguided by bad leaders if we surrender."

Well, Wolokoso wishes all MPs - rebel or not - well in 2014. And for those with court judgments coming up for alleged offences related to opposing party positions, well, may constitutionalism win!

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