A poignant saying in Ateso translates roughly to: Removing maggots from the mushroom.
Mushroom is a delicacy sauce; so, when a man/woman has collected it from the bushes, it is necessary to check if it is clean. Often maggots tend to burrow in and eat it from the inside. Since you do not want to abandon it, when you have sighted the maggots, you spread it out and remove the maggots that are nesting in it; then you dry it, after which it is ready for cooking.
This is a very relevant observation when referring to the recent attempt by the Electoral Commission (EC), the Uganda National Examinations Board (UNEB) and Parliament to re-examine Robert Kyagulanyi’s a.k.a Bobi Wine, birth and academic records. The salient idea here is to find any shortcomings that can be used to disqualify him from standing as the presidential candidate for the National Unity Platform (NUP), in the 2020 General Elections.
These organizations should not even have considered this idea in the first place, because they themselves would have to be accused for sanctifying Bobi Wine to stand as the Kyadondo East constituency candidate in 2016. For the last nearly five years, he has been in Parliament without any of them raising a finger as to his academic or birth “credit” worthiness. This is ridiculous!
Before they contemplated this move, did they even go to Makerere University, Kampala, to check his academic credentials in the Music Dance and Drama (MDD) Faculty to find out about his age and other records? Have they gone to Harvard University to check out his attendance of the Kennedy School of Government? If they did, were their findings tallying with those other institutions, for them to come back here and harangue us that Bobi Wine was an academic and birth impostor?
This is pertinent for two major reasons. It stands out that Bobi Wine appears to be a serious opposition challenger to President Yoweri Museveni of the National Resistance Movement (NRM) party. All these institutions of Government: EC, UNEB and Parliament are being brought into play to nip Bobi Wine’s contest in the bud, as it were. The understanding being played out in the backrooms of political intrigue is that; “Do not let that fellow on to the presidential campaign trail, because, he is likely to embarrass us.” That is an understatement!
On the other hand, if you are going to apply a screening test to Bobi Wine, then you must apply the same to all the 36-or-so presidential aspirants. Obviously, the majority of them is inconsequent; and can be dispensed with from the start. That would leave President Museveni, who would be the main beneficiary if Bobi Wine were, for some reason, or other, not to contest the presidency.
We have already witnessed the fractious controversy the issue of the “age limit” brought, including bringing Parliament, one of the institutions questioning Bobi Wine, into serious disrepute, when its Members were involved in a dis-honourable fist fight on the floor of the House.
To have to stretch this to its logical conclusions they would have to do another microscopic survey of what the significance of the age limit brought to the political fore. If they do not do this then, the adage of the maggots and the mushroom kicks in. In other word, they are not looking at the whole mushroom, but only wanting to remove the particular maggot that they have found in it.
You can stretch the implications of this saying further. That, having removed the maggot/s, the woman does not even go ahead to spread it out and drying it in the sun. Instead, she goes ahead and cooks it. By doing that without going through the whole process of cleaning the mushroom, the chances are that, when the source is ready for eating it will be rancid from not having removed the whole maggot effect from the mushroom before cooking. The food will not be palatable!
Transpose this to the country’s body politic: especially, the EC is not cleaning the whole electoral process adequately. If Bobi Wine is going to be the cause for the rot in the country to continue, then the whole electoral process should undergo a forensic examination so that the whole country does not suffer the after effects of a politically discriminatory process.