Letters: Article on Visit to Apac Gave Bad Image
Apac Town - street leading to the radio offices located at "the blue house".
Source: radioapac.tripod.com .

Letters: Article on Visit to Apac Gave Bad Image


"Businge betrays his background..."

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By Peter Kawaida
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First published: April 22, 2006


Regarding the article: Visiting Apac

The article by Gerald Businge, on his visit to Apac, needs comments. Much as he tried to give a fair informative view on some issues, others were outright biased. First of all, Businge claims that the ferry at Masindi Port was such a "big deal" that should win votes for the current government. For his information, this ferry was there long before the current government, and therefore it is not an innovation. It is a "road" link, some kind of 'floating road' under Ministry of works. Does one have to supplicate each time you step on a public road? To show how 'vital' the ferry is, Businge did not travel back to Kampala through it.

 At Masindi port (Apac Ferry) - listening to Apac FM 92.9
At Masindi port (Apac Ferry) - listening to Apac FM 92.9
Source: radioapac.tripod.com .


Second, his portrayal of Apac as just another trading centre is pathetic. Apac became a Town Council in 1973, and by 2000, it had well over 1000 permanent buildings, and definitely not the smallest town in Uganda. Businge's "you complete it before you start" touring is indicative of malice aforethought. Why did he not photograph the hotel where he stayed, which even has DSTV?

Third, Businge photographed a village road and called it Apac main street. This is worse than even a bad portrayal and betrays his intention further. Apac Town has over 7kms of tarmac roads; it is a well-planned town with provision of double-carriage way, and buildings are coming up according to the plan. That photo is not anywhere near Apac Town. I think it is Ibuje Trading centre where Businge went, but the caption says, "Town of Apac".

Last, I found it both a triviality as well as a naivety to report the begging of village children. Triviality because, what would Businge expect of children who would expect 'good' visitors to carry sweets or candy for the little ones? And he had neither. Naivety because as someone had to remind him, the pathetic poverty he saw is a Uganda-wide phenomenon. Even in Businge's village, there must be people in similar conditions.

By pretending to have met the most wretched of the wretched, Businge betrays his background and profession as a journalist whose prying eyes should have told him better.

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By Peter Kawaida
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First published: April 22, 2006
Peter Kawaida is a UGPulse visitor from Makerere University, Kampala.

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