Rosebell's Blog

"You cannot uneducate the person who has learned to read. You cannot humiliate the person who feels pride. You cannot oppress the people who are not afraid anymore."-Cesar Chavez



We are NOT ONE.


One of the most thoughtful commentaries that I have read after Westgate mall attack in Kenya.
Like the great 18th Century English Writer Samuel Johnson said “It is unpleasing to represent our affairs to our own disadvantage; yet it is necessary to shew the evils which we desire to be removed.” And that sometimes “Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel.”

Originally posted on Gregg Tendwa:

I refuse to suck up to this fake sense of Kenyan patriotism.

I grew up reading books on Kenyan history and singing to the tunes of patriotic songs that were constantly propagated by the Kenya Broadcasting Corporation. I went to school in a single party state when there was no difference between government and political parties. I was taught history that was cooked by the curriculum developers to deliberately make me become patriotic to the country Kenya.

At school, I was taught to sing the national anthem as well as recite the national pledge, which at the time, was coined to end up with pledging loyalty and allegiance to the president of Kenya. I was taught that Kenyatta was the Kenyan Jesus. I was taught how to sing for the president, and bow my head in respect.

In church, I was taught to obey and not question authority. I was…

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Africa’s lost monies; What has tax transparency in G8 countries got to do with it?

On Tuesday June 18, G8 leaders signed the Lough Erne Declaration in Northern Ireland  – promising greater transparency about company ownership to flush out firms who deliberately avoid paying tax.

In a global push against tax evasion the UK, US, Germany, France, Italy, Canada, Japan and Russia signed the declaration that many campaigners said had more ‘should’ and didn’t promote openness.

British Prime Minister David Cameron said the declaration would support nations including the poorest in the world and would help ensure ‘proper tax justice’. The declaration indicated:

Continue reading “Africa’s lost monies; What has tax transparency in G8 countries got to do with it?”

A father’s day note

Happy Day to all moms who work day and night being both father and mother to your children! We live in an interesting world where fathers never turn up when you need a pencil, a school bag, tuition fees or at a school event. They are never anywhere close when you are doing homework each night.

These are the fathers who will fight to be present at your graduation, remind you how they are your father and list all their entitlements on the news of a possible marriage or simply turn up at your door to because now you are somebody.

I have had close friends whose never-ever-present fathers turn up to ask their fiance loads of money a few weeks to their wedding and well those whose fathers only remember them when they hear they have got a job.

There are also those male relatives who are supposedly your father according tradition- because your father passed away at a young age. They never ever supported you but they will force their way to wedding meeting to demand their’rightful’ place.

These are true stories have plagued some peoples lives today.

So such on a day, I thank all fathers who are doing their best to be good fathers and good role models for your children especially daughters! Who believe that your daughter can be as good as your son and show it. You are gems!

When I think of good fathers, I am drawn to The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency, first book in the series by Scottish author Alexander McCall Smith set up in Botswana. His lead fiction character is Mma Precious Ramotswe, the first female private investigator in Botswana. Precious is always talking fondly about her late father Rra Obed Ramotswe who allowed her to inherit his herd of cattle in a culture where women aren’t really allowed this right. Precious describes herself as a “girl who has had a good father.” And this drives her to do great in her career.

To all fathers, I hope your children can proudly say, today or later in life, that they are proud of what you are doing for them! I

Happy Fathers Day from Belfast!

Seven stories in seven days in Myanmar

I got off the Bangkok Airways flight at Yangon International Airport. At the arrivals, the long line for visas on arrival welcomes me and after an hour i get my visa. Things are a little slower than most places I have visited. So much paper work!!

I am in Myanmar for the Global Young Leaders forum run by the World Economic Forum. The Forum  will take place on the sides of World Economic Forum on East Asia both in Yango (Rangoon) and Nay Pyi Taw. I read in the Myanmar Times that the gathering of about 900 delegates will be the largest gathering the country has hosted in 20 years. I had read from ForeignPolicy  a few days before that “between 1900 and 1990, gross domestic product (GDP) growth  increased at no more than 1.6 percent a year — half of the rate of the rest of the world.”

From BBC I had read “from 1962 to 2011, Myanmar was ruled by a military junta that suppressed almost all dissent and wielded absolute power in the face of international condemnation and sanctions.” And i also have a Burmese friend who has been at the forefront working with dissents in the diaspora since late 1990s.

A mural at the Young Global Leaders Forum
A mural at the Young Global Leaders Forum

As I go deeper into the Myanmar Times pages, I find an MTN advert and all the talk is invest in this, invest in that. It’s a country that has been closed to the world for long and now everybody is rushing. Everybody talks of how much opportunity exists.  MTN is here because for the first time the government is going liberalize the telecom sector.


US is about to pump in a lot of money after decades of isolating the country. Myanmar has oil, gas, timber and minerals. Its a market of over 60 million people.

As we drive past the Yagon University, the driver smiles brightly and tells me Obama came to the university on his visit recently.

As we close in to my hotel, I realize how heavy it’s been raining and it trained for most of my first 48 hours in Myanmar.


As i think of an article about the Marriage and Divorce bill which is currently being miscommunicated in media and by our male MPs with backing of churches, my Zimbabwean inspirational sister Delta penned down a good one. These experiences from Zimbabwe are not any different from those of us who have grown up in Uganda.

Originally posted on Itsdelta's Blog:

We used to have conversations in our final year of varsity when the thought of entering the job market weighed heavily on our minds and we worried about where to go from there.

In some of those discussions the view was often expressed that the female graduates were at an advantage because they could always look for a husband instead of stressing too much about their chances of penetrating the job market (as if marriage were a career path) while the males would have no such reprieve.

In the haze of idealism, we thought that perhaps such arguments had merit and that a male graduate might have to work years before they could own a car while a female graduate might happen upon a wealthy man and be driving within a few months.

This line of argument was further buttressed by the fact that many female students often fell pregnant…

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2012 in review

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

19,000 people fit into the new Barclays Center to see Jay-Z perform. This blog was viewed about 120,000 times in 2012. If it were a concert at the Barclays Center, it would take about 6 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

Uganda’s independence Jubilee and why all can’t jubilate.

Today Ugandans marked 50 years since colonial rule ended. On October 9th 1962, Uganda joined a list of African countries that were set to govern their own affairs after decades, in some cases centuries, of colonization.

I left Kampala a few hours to the Independence Day but even if I were home, I wouldn’t have joined the national event at Kololo to celebrate. I think we have a lot more to reflect on than an all out celebration.

It is important that every person should take part in deciding the affairs of their family, community and nation. So the end of colonialism didn’t mean the end of the quest for Ugandans to have a say on how they want to be governed.

Uganda like many African countries was a nation formed by colonialists through breaking nations (others call them kingdoms) and forcing them under one boundary as they saw fit- for their administrative and colonial interests. So to convince these nations to come to recognize and really be part of the new nation Uganda was a tall order!

Continue reading “Uganda’s independence Jubilee and why all can’t jubilate.”

For Uganda at 50

The last couple of weeks I have been working on a few documentaries one on trade and another on women empowerment. All these are around our 50 years independence anniversary due October 9.  I went to  the eastern district of Butaleja. It was my first time there and also first time to see rice in the field! These were the sites in this beautiful land.

Hajji Ahmed Naleba is a rice farmer in Butaleja Eastern Uganda. Emerging of South Sudan as top market for Ugandan produce has seen farmers like Naleba increase their profit.

Continue reading “For Uganda at 50”

Why We Are Happy To Confront Jesus And Mohammad, But ‘Fear’ Photos Of Breastfeeding Mothers


I thought Charles’ post raise most questions i have had over the past week. And why would you claim freedom of expression and can’t stand a photo of a breastfeeding mother? Well where i come from women are free to breastfeed in public and not feel ashamed and Google and Facebook ought to know better.

Originally posted on NAKED CHIEFS :

Google, owners of the video broadcast website YouTube, refused to remove “Innocence of Muslims”, the video that has outraged Muslims all over the world and led to violent protests in Libya, Egypt, Tunisia, Sudan, Yemen, Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan. The American ambassador and three other diplomats in Libya, were killed when protestors attacked the US consulate in Benghazi.

Google, however, agreed to temporarily block access to the video from selected Muslim countries.

“Innocence of Muslims”, according to its critics, mocks Islam and blasphemes the Prophet Mohammad.

Videos of “Innocence of Muslims” have also been posted on the social media site Facebook. Indeed in Egypt, a Coptic Christian who posted the film on his Facebook page is currently under 15 days detention on charges of insulting religion.

The storm over “Innocence of Muslims” is already passing. What interests me though is something different. While, for example, Facebook allows videos of “Innocence of…

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Happy Easter

This is the second Easter  holiday I have spent outside home. This time am next door in Nairobi with friends. Last months have been hectic and I am taking a few days to celebrate, appreciate, reflect on the gift of friendship and freedom. So my friend Rachel took these photos yesterday in cold Nairobi weather.

Easter is about freedom and someone recently asked “so Rosebell, what’s your favourite bible character?”   David! To me he represents human flaws, freedom and victory. And in the end I love the fact that in the end despite all flaws God calls him “Man after my own heart”.

So to all friends, real friends, family and everyone who values freedom, may you be free!

“Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John 8:32

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