There are very few people who read the newspapers in their totality.
In fact, very few of us who care for the detail as it is reported.
However, despite that dearth of attention that’s eating us up, you cannot fail to notice good photos on the front spread of the dailies. Particularly those of the Daily Monitor.
So if you’ve noticed those photos, a good chunk of them are actually taken by a female photographer called Rachael Mabala.
In the journalism corridors, we whisper about her talent behind the lens. We worship her daring coverage in riots, demonstrations and conflicts. In the photo awards, a lineage of her name litters lists year on year. And yet. A church, one with a 129-year legacy down the buckle, aptly named after Paul the apostle, chased Mabala out of service for – wait for it – wearing trousers!
I’m not kidding!
Wearing cloth that men and women have worn for centuries.
If you’re checking your calendar, you can stop. Yes, it’s 2019, not 1890.
There wasn’t any further reason served up to explain this dubious drivel but there can be no prizes for guessing.
It’s the tired, archaic belief that trousers are a reserve for men. It runs hot on the heels of elements of patriarchy that seek to control women’s bodies through determining what they can and can’t wear. It also runs counter to all traditions established by Jesus, the son of God, who opened the floodgates to allow everyone ‘come as they are’ to places of worship.
But a church official, 2019 years later, a transitory sinner like us, washed in unrighteousness wasn’t having any of Jesus’ teaching. Shame! Shame! Shame!
I’d say repent but what’s with preaching the teachings of God’s son if in their supposed Coventry they matter as less as the bile they are scribbled on?
Anyway, Rachael was in fact wearing a suit. If you plan to brabble further.
You’d think the week’s cascade of shame was done.
Ffumbe’s clan head was not missing the podium finish.
While the Namirembe church official chased Racheal away from covering Nsibambi’s requiem, the Ffumbe clan leader wasn’t letting Nsibambi’s heir, Rhodah Nakimuli Kasujja, his daughter – a woman, clearly couldn’t be anything else – assume the role her father’s last wishes designated for her, heiress to his estate.
The jokes write themselves, sans humour.
So now that we’ve established the two gigantic institutions in the Church and Buganda for whom the actions were carried out in protection of, shall we proceed to debate their use in a global world?
In the United Kingdom, catch me call it Great Britain, centuries of tradition came tumbling down when an African-American Meghan Markle swept the Prince off his feet. They had a lavish wedding and proceeded to bear a child in their marriage. Has the kingdom faded into oblivion? I bet not!
Traditional institutions should open up to a ‘substance over form’ debate in which many long practised customs that belong to the gallery archive of the National Museum should be carted off.
Wearing trousers in a church, short shots if you must, don’t alter the substance of worship which is an intimate connection with God.
Being heiress doesn’t in substance alter the continuity of the legacy and name of a deceased. So why are we defending them hook, line sinker?
Burden me less with convention, please!
Rachael and Rhoda, please light the dark tunnels of our society and chase out the roaches of misogyny.