By Roshan Nabateesa
Conflicts, rebellions and a genocide defined the road to independence for the different East African countries. We were under our colonial governance a ruling system that we never seemed to agree with. A land that was supposed to feel like home did not feel like home at all so we had to fight our way to freedom.
Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda and Burundi were all able to get their independence; well not at the same time of course.
The road to independence wasn’t an easy one for all the four countries; blood was shed, lives were lost, property was destroyed among other things. The way of living changed because of the new rules that were introduced; land was lost to the colonial masters which made Africans squatters on their own land, taxes were introduced not to mention forced labor.
Despite all the tough times, we were able to get the taste of freedom and no one could ever imagine to ever see such days again.
Jomo Kenyata of Kenya, Sir Edwards Muteesa II of Uganda, Mwalimu Julius Nyere of Tanzania and Gregoire Kayibanda of Rwanda were the first presidents of the independent East African countries.
Yes we were independent and still independent but we are not going to just sit back and relax.
Our brothers and sisters from Rwanda who still recovering from the genocide horrors are not so relaxed because of the constant attacks on Kenya. Ugandans at some point can’t seem to comprehend what is going on around their country anymore because of the mysterious murder cases going around the country, the terror threats among other things.
The peace and freedom that we all fought so hard to get is becoming a myth rather than a reality. We can’t deny the fact that Uganda has been through tougher times but we also can’t ignore the fact that those are the times we don’t want to be reliving.
Not only East Africa but very many countries in the world have fought their way towards freedom and peace. Rebellions and World wars were staged just to see that their vision is put to reality but it’s no secret right now that there is an angry mob of Muslim extremists who are turning the world into an abattoir by claiming innocent lives. Our countries don’t feel like home anymore because we leave in a state of fear due to a group of invaders who are taking over our peace.
The peace and harmony that we all hoped to have achieved by the 21st century is slowly disappearing through the thick fog.
East Africa and the rest of the world is on its knees praying for a safe place to stay.
Yes we are praying but that is not all that we are going to do because God helps those who help themselves.
Al-Shabab, Al-Qaidah, Boko Haram and ISIS are proving to be stronger by the day. Each day, each week and each passing month there is a school, hospital, village, town, building that is under attack and lives have been taken and are still being taken. The police, army and security guards are doing the best they can; world organizations are also trying their best to see that countries are out of this brutal and horrific experience but what are we doing about it as citizens?
A case in point Uganda is one of the countries that have gotten firsthand experience from these attacks and they are still going on but we have become so reluctant about our own safety. We do have an army, police force, security guards stationed on each and every building at least but all know that they are not everywhere so we have to make it our soul responsibility to be the eyes and ears of this country.
Its every nations dream to have a peaceful country because truth be told we all been through a lot when we go back to our history. Yes we are praying for a better and peaceful day but we are all going to keep fighting for what we think is right because it is in our blood not to give up easily.