Reading into the language of Kibuule’s speech

Let us breakdown Kibuule’s Kajara speech and hopefully show you why his resignation is important to us.

This brings me to another war:

“War” would be right if Kibuule was playing on the other team, the team that fights against rape. It would be used then to communicate the gravity of such a campaign. But using such language here instead communicates aggressiveness and a determined stance from Kibuule. This, he believes, is his crusade.

I am happy in this hall, I have not seen someone in a miniskirt, I have not seen someone in a balanced trouser. I thank you, people of Kajara.

Kibuule is saying here that this is something that is always, always at the forefront of his thoughts. When he walks into a room, he essentially inspects the people present to see what they are wearing. It is a daily routine, a celebrated habit he sees as his duty.

I always get ashamed whenever I go to attend functions in Busoga and in Buganda.
This sentence is problematic in various ways, but for now, let us simply concentrate on the fact that he has isolated two groups of people: Basoga and Baganda. He has tribalised/ethinicised dressing. It is not about what the people are wearing anymore, here it becomes who the people are and the two are inseparable to a listener. A Musoga=a person that dresses in a style that shames the Minister. Stripped down, this is tribalism.

I don’t know what they want to show me. Mmmh. Then you are in a taxi, carrying newspapers. Who told you to put on a miniskirt?

This is the stuff that many feminism essays talk about. To show you? This says that Kibuule only views women in relation to him, as objects that wake up every morning and dress up with the thought of a man. The woman exists for the man. The woman has no independence of thought, mind or body. He reduces the stranger, for this is a taxi scene where we usually don’t know people personally, to a female being that exists solely for him. She dressed for him she wants to show him.

Me I have told even the Police Chief, you shouldn’t even listen to the person who comes to report a rape case, putting on a miniskirt.

Now Speaker Kadaga ruled yesterday that no procedural measures could be taken because the comments were personal. This sentence begs to differ. It went from personal to institutional when he brought Police in. We like to think that IGP Kayihura will not heed but the problem remains that with these views, Kibuule can-because he is a Minister- reach the people that you, a tax-paying citizen who holds no office, cannot. This means that he can affect change at the institutional level, that he has tried to do this. He reaches out to not just any state apparatus but the Police. For many, if not all, rape victims, this is the first step in reporting. If your case is squashed here, you have no case.

The intention was: Please why don’t you rape me? [People laugh] Because in the first place I am not even sure that your intention was not to be raped.

The Youth Minister has gone on Twitter and said that he did not okay rape. From this however, we learn that he believes in “the intention to get raped”. He says he is not sure if this was not a victim’s intention. Intention. That’s a strong word. It means that these women are not victims, that they asked for it, that they wanted it. They intended for this to happen to them. And it removes all responsibility from the perpetrators because according to this, really what they were doing was do what the woman intended for them to do.

You are putting on a miniskirt, with a slit, then you cover. You start sitting…. please, comfortably, why don’t you put on like these ladies now? They are comfortable.

It boils down to women’s clothes, women’s bodies. The woman-as per Kibuule- has no character, no individuality.

But now, as a Youth Minister, when I talked about this, these parliamentarians chased me.. “aah no we don’t need it”. Because Ethics tried to bring it out.

If anyone was in doubt about who was speaking- whether it is Kibuule, the man or Kibuule, the Minister- this answers you. AS YOUTH MINISTER. That is again, institutional and when Kibuule invokes his office, he ceases to become a man expressing his personal opinions. He becomes the embodiment of the Government and his words become the Government’s words. He is telling you, the listener, what his ministry-and by association, the Government- stance on the matter is.

You are looking for a job, you come with your balanced trousers. Who wants to see you? I had to go look for a musician called David Lutalo to ask him: why don’t you compose a song? Talk about the dressing code, talk about the drugs. And you have seen me in that video. The reason was, let’s now create advocacy.

Kibuule here goes into the public arena, reaching a wider audience to “create advocacy” through music. He uses his office to be able to get into this space, because let’s face it, a Minister in your music video? That can be persuasive for some musicians. And the problem is music reaches audiences that many other art and speech forms don’t. Music can be heard on radios, can be remembered for generations, can influence your thought process subconsciously and is aesthetically pleasing (some of it, anyway) and a message can be repeatedly played. This is where it goes from Kibuule the man/minister to a cultural formation.

That people, just by the mercy of God, cease to dress up in such a manner. Someone in a balanced trouser. I see them that they have come for interviews. Who can employ you? If the…any operation came, you will not survive. They will see you as the suspect. If they are looking for thugs and they happen to see you in a balanced trouser, they will just put you on kabangali, straight to the next po…police station.

Again, institutionalization of the issue. Kibuule, at such a function, is expected to break down the system to the people so they can understand it better. The system he is explaining here is disturbing, to say the least. Kibuule is informing us that the Police do not investigate crimes, that they rely on dress code for arrest. In some spaces, this is called profiling.

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3 thoughts on “Reading into the language of Kibuule’s speech

  1. Pingback: Why Stanbic footage at this point derails the bigger conversation | Mon pi Mon

  2. Pingback: It’s late but there are things about 2013 that I have to say | Mon pi Mon

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