Sacrificing for the nation

So much has been said about the Hon Janet Kataaha Museveni interview which ran on Monday evening on NTV. Well, in the days to come, a lot more will be heaped on what has already been regurgitated. The most interesting aspect on the interview came when she said her family had sacrificed a lot for this country.

Whichever way you look at it, that family has sacrificed a lot. First, it is not an easy thing to live in the limelight. Every word you say, every gesture you make is scrutinized and milked for whatever newsworthiness it carries. Most of us enjoy the freedom of saying what we like or posting whatever we want on social media, even if it might not make sense. That family does not have that freedom. They are damned if they say something about a trending social issue; and they are damned if they do not say anything. Either way, they are branded insensitive.

Being in the First Family means exposing yourself to all kind of abuse – both justified and unjustified. Just take a look at the parodies being made in the American press about President Donald Trump and his older children. If you are bold enough to venture out of the high walls that surround every First Lady, and desire a job, you had better be up to it. What may have failed a mere minister must not be a hindrance to a First Lady; after all, you are literally besides the centre of power. No one will understand that the Ministry of Finance holds the purse strings and everything in this country is considered a priority.

When power comes in through the door, peace of mind flies out of the window. Why else would a First Lady address herself to a Facebook rant – for lack of a better word. It is so easy to see that Dr Stella Nyanzi’s tirade about a social issue that should really be addressed, has ruffled some feathers. While we go to sleep every night without bothering to think too much about what is lurking outside, this family does not have that much of a luxury. Who can peacefully go to sleep with the beginnings of a regime fatigue in Kampala?

I guess once you are in that privileged position it is only natural to do all you can to remain there. So you must swallow your fear and take the bold step of trusting people whose hearts you cannot even read. Sure, God might have sent you but you are not God. It is in human nature to betray those who trust us. So, you sacrifice enriching friendships and trade them in for mutually beneficial cooperation with people who can easily find a way to adapt and thrive with or without you.

This thing about sacrifice is not an easy one. So before you go casting stones at the Lady, what have you sacrificed in your life, thus far?

 

gnantume@ug.nationmedia.com

 

Gillian Nantume

Gillian Nantume is a correspondent/ features writer, Monitor Publications Limited.