SHAATRA MUZAKI: Let us tame this glaring social stratification

Sharon Shaatra Muzaki Namono (PHOTO /Courtesy)

Kololo, Munyonyo and Muyenga are a spectacle of a peri-urban beauty. The invitation to the eye by the luxury of modern architectural design is an orgasm of the mind.

The modern suburbs are a definition of splendor. Magnificent houses in spacious compounds decorated by mouth-watering car types with a marvel of quality are a peculiar characteristic of the environs.

Residing in Muyenga, Munyonyo or Kololo is a preserve of a few elites and moguls who are privileged enough to rise an income that allows them to shed off a seven-digit figure equivalent of money to rent or even buy off hectares of land with ease.

Of course, that is what money should enable you do: acquire the luxuries of this short life; and live the life of your much cherished dreams.

However, traversing through the ghettos of Kamwokya, your eyes are embraced with an entirely different side of the story. The invitation is by the squalor, filth and modesty of the peri-urban slums.

The inhabitants are neither guaranteed of the present nor the future. To them, life is characterized by daily premium ocular secretions. Tears to one extreme, and may be weed or waragi on the other. This arrangement is a representation of the eminent divide in the country.

Whereas the divide is understandably inevitable, its width and depth are a serious issue of concern. In a country, where there is cosmetic GDP growth – but with a relatively constant GDP per capita for close to a decade, a deeper economic divide deserves utmost attention.

The deeper it gets, the more polarized the country gets. A deepening economic divide breeds two mutually exclusive social classes: the class of the privileged and the other of the unprivileged.

This classy system of affairs, is the 21st century mode of apartheid. This separatism is what breeds a rivalry society of “them” against “us”.

Therefore it’s not surprising to find those Boda-Boda men choosing to gang up and stone a Range rover of any presumably privileged person even at the least resolvable form of mistake.

Privilege classing is further being sustained by modern economic and political forces. In a country where there are publicly perceived roads for the privileged (rich) like Kampala- Entebbe express highway, an apartheid education system that dictates that quality canonly be accessed by those with the privilege of attending private schools, and quality health services are a preserve of those with a surplus of ‘papers’ in their wallets, social stratification is glaring, and like an atomic explosion, the effects are imminent.

As the permanent secretary of Ministry of Finance was quoted, “The poor don’t sleep because they are hungry. But the rich can’t sleep because the poor are awake.”

Therefore, propagating a stratified system of affairs is rushing the economic and social terrorism because in a society where we are divided on grounds of religion, tribes, political parties, soccer teams, Messi vs Ronaldo, privileged classing is adding concentrated salt in a stinking wound.

Sharon Shaatra Muzaki Namono

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Magoba Geofrey

    05/12/2021 at 9:06 PM

    What a nice piece of art of thinking and writing, so interesting and telling us the reality in Uganda’s standards of living.

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