Comedian cum politician. If you have not seen him act or come across that WhatsApp video where he struggles speaking English, then you won’t understand the excitement people have to see Kato Lubwama on the floor of Parliament. Ian Ford Nkera breaks it down for you.
When Kato Lubwama stood for the Rubaga South MP seat, no one took him seriously for some obvious reasons. The first being that he had made something of a career being anything but serious. He was a seasoned actor and comedian whose sole meal ticket was from making a nuisance of himself on stage and on his radio shows. Kato Lubwama not only told jokes for a living but was also largely seen as a joke.
The other reason was that he was contesting against comedian-in-chief and Rubaga South MP Ken Lukyamuzi, who was a darling to the residents. Everything seemed like a Herculean task for the owl-eyed comic before he pulled off one of the biggest upsets in recent history by unseating the veteran politician.
The only question on everyone’s mind was how the newly-elected MP was going to express himself in the 10th Parliament since English was a far too familiar enemy. One thing Kato Lubwama can be sure of is that he will be leaving one theatre heading to another, which is the Parliament.
Together with the likes of Munyagwa and Odongo Otto, this Parliament won’t be short of drama and gaffes, that is for sure. So, if Kato Lubwama is someone you draw inspiration from, here is a way you could be like him:
Man of the people
During the campaigns, Kato Lubwama drew large crowds, but what caught people’s attention was the way he connected with ‘abantu babulijjo’ (the ordinary people). The people, mainly the youth, saw him as the answer to many of Rubaga’s problems. They wanted a fresh, younger face (don’t laugh) to represent the youth and the baby-faced Kato Lubwama gave them that. (Don’t laugh again, please). It is a character trait that was noticed when he was starting out in drama because he naturally knew how to draw crowds and engage them.
To be a man of the people like Kato Lubwama, you must be first and foremost, approachable. The issue with most Ugandans is that they wear all the problems from work and home as makeup. Always afford a smile even when your landlord has put a fat padlock on your door or your madam is carrying your boss’ baby.
People feel indebted to you when they know that you can take a hit. To be a man of the people, you must be willing to walk and live with the people at all times. The problem is that many young Ugandan men get some money and forget their friends, family and their childhood kaweke girlfriend. Always stay in touch with your people.
Change your act
If Kato Lubwama can do it, then why shouldn’t you? The guy used to put on uniform to mimick school-going children on stage but straightened his act to go into full-time politics. What excuse do you honestly have? It doesn’t matter if your life, career and relationships are a big joke, you can still make something of yourself.
Your account balance might seem like a joke now but all that can change when you decide to step up certain things in your life. Forget the joke that none of your relationships last more than two months and look on the bright side.
Take control of your life and realise that you won’t find good women lounging at some trench of a bar while drunk into a stupor in the wee hours of the night. Do not be the guy who earns a lot of dime but spends most of it on booze and women. Trust me, the ladies can only care about sucking you dry then laugh at you later. Change your act.
Abolish English the enemy
Kato Lubwama has played hide and seek with the English language for years since many of his dramas dictated that he spoke Luganda, ofcourse. If Luganda ever became an international language, Kato Lubwama would be its ambassador. It rolls off his tongue so effortlessly that you would think that the mere thought of him speaking another language would spell disaster. Enter English. This is like putting him in the heart of Mogadishu where bullets fly at will. English has proved to be a battlefield that will re-open its fire at him in Parliament but Kato Lubwama won’t be worried too much. The guy hasn’t let his English failings deter him from representing his people.
If you want to be like Kato Lubwama, speak the language you know best. Do not bottle your thoughts and opinions because nouns and vowels are not your cup of tea. Stand in front of elite delegates and make your peeps from Bukedea and Pakwach proud with your delivery in the mother tongue.
If you graduated from Muteesa I Royal University, we assume that you wrote your dissertation in Luganda, so don’t waste that skill. Speak out now.
There you have it. Go ahead and be like the Rubaga South MP Kato Lubwama.
Disclaimer: This is a humour column and the views expressed henceforth may not necessarily be an objective assessment of the individual or group.