After the arrest of yet another satirical writer Norman Tumuhimbise, The Fatboy Show Presenter Olive Najjuma has said that it is impossible to silence writers.
Norman Tumuhimbise and eight other people were arrested from their offices of the Alternative Movement last Thursday by unidentified security personnel who whisked them away in a numberless van to an unknown location.
The arrest was linked to Tumuhimbise’s social media advertisement regarding the launch of his book titled ‘Liars and Accomplices’ that was scheduled for 31st March at the Imperial Royal Hotel.
“In the 60’s when many African countries were gaining independence from the colonialists, some writers had to leave their countries because the books they had written weren't taken in good faith, for example Ngugi Wa Thiong'o. It is said that they were very political in their writings. So I think that the heavy handedness of our army is meant to silence people, but you can't silence a writer,” said Olive.
Her Co-host Fatboy wondered how the Government expects to silence critics by arresting them, saying that leaving them to write is one of the ways that can halt a revolution.
“If I were the leader of the army, I would just let people say what they want because when you want to stave off a revolution, you want to allow people to vent because when you don’t, the pressure builds and blows up. So you need to allow them to express themselves freely,” he said.
Fatboy further explained that when critics express themselves on social media, usually the public tends to enjoy the fun of it thereafter returning to their normal lives. He added that many times, people’s attention switches to other current affairs which the government can use to its advantage.
“The Government’s huge ego doesn't allow them to understand that you have to allow people to vent and be the subject of jokes and insults. It might hurt your feelings but from a strategic point of view, you're keeping the society from exploding.”
Norman Tumuhimbise’s arrest comes second to that of Kakwenza Rukirabashaija, a Government critic and writer who was arrested on December 28th, 2021 by unknown gunmen that whisked him to an undisclosed location before he appeared in court on charges of offensive communication directed towards President Museveni and the first son Lt. Gen Muhoozi Kainerugaba.
Prior to this, Kakwenza was arrested for his book ‘The Greedy Barbarian’ before his second arrest and rejection of bail that saw him flee the country to Germany to acquire specialized treatment for the injuries inflicted on his body during his time in detention.
The Fatboy show is hosted by James Onen aka Fatboy, Olive and Sarah every weekday from 6am to 10am on RX Radio.