by Christine Namara
Tuesday, July 21, 2015
I read with little surprise the article written by Kavuma-Kaggwa, an elder from Kyaggwe recently published by New Vision regarding Uganda/Kenya’s involvement in Somalia.
What surprised me more than annoy, was the fact that this author repeatedly says we have nothing to lose, if we pulled out of Somalia. What a selfish and cowardly statement!
I take this piece of writing as an opportunity to inform Ugandans that our involvement in the defence of our neighbours is for our own good.
I once asked a mzungu friend of mine who happens to live in Uganda for now a year, how much Luganda he now knew. He said not much but he knows one sentence “nfuniramu wa?”(loosely translated as: how do I benefit?)
I see Kaggwa asking where does Uganda gain from? Kaggwa and others who may think like him, are aware that Uganda is a land lock locked country we need all boarders open for our trade.
Secondly, If we pulled out of Somalia today, we will have created a safe haven for Al-shabab to train more terrorists for Africa and Somalia could be used as a training ground for other butchers like the ADF.
Being a Pan-Africanist, I have keenly followed steps of this war and if am not mistaken, the killing that these terrorists are carrying out now are kicks of a dying horse. Al-Shabab is at its weakest point.
We have also been informed that there is trading of guns in Somalia, it is, therefore, a duty of the Ugandan government to sacrifice and save what may turn into terror for our country tomorrow.
Somalia can be used as shopping centre for guns to those who want to destabilize our peace. A stitch in time saves nine.
Thirdly, when your neighbour’s house is on fire, do you close your doors and tuck yourself in your bed? or do you get out to help lest your own(house) is hit up as well.
Since speaking the same language, praying the to the same God, dressing alike have not helped our brothers in Somalia, it should be a lesson to all Africans and, especially Ugandans, at this political time, that sectarianism is no guarantee to unity.
The killing of innocent people like that of Westgate Shopping Mall, the 2010 Lugogo attack is still a living scar in our hearts and this is more reason for us to support the AMISSOM mission so as to prevent more deaths since our pulling out does not guarantee end of al-Shabaab attacks.
If Uganda and Kenya pulled out of Somalia, we will have not only failed the mandate of the African Union, but also put many people’s lives in danger, including Ugandans.
We must keep the African spirit up, Somalis are Africans and are human they have the same blood feel the same pain as Ugandans do. What our soldiers in Somalia need is our support not sympathy.
The writer is a Pan-Africanist