Friday, January 28, 2011

David Kato Kisule: The funeral. And Beyond

I have gone through lots of emails.
Friends, acquitances, well wishers. The world over is in sympathy with gay Ugandans on the death of David Kato Kisule.
Is an emotional time for me. Actually, am not trusting myself to talk. At least the words I write are kind of filtered. And, of course there is the backspace on the keyboard. Can delete and erase and edit words. But, not as when they come out of the mouth.
Maybe my biggest fear is that I am so emotional that I may cry!!!!
Ahem, ahem. Internal joke, that. Not very fit to be shared further than me. But it is good enough to make me laugh.

I was not at the funeral. [maybe I fear crowds…..!]. But, I was there in the spirit. With the crowd, the mourners. And, I was there last night. Spent the whole night there. At last saw the elder twin, Wasswa. Was kind of a morbid curiosity. According to tradition, it is taboo to talk about a twin dying. So, another word is used. I believe the reason is that they are supposed to be connected. So, one does not die while the other lives. But, I did see David Kato’s elder brother.

There is lots of press on him. Yes, David would be happy.
Why do I feel sad at that?
Because he is not around to share the happiness.
But, there are still battles to fight. That is matter of fact. For example, even at the funeral, a preacher decided that the chance of a captive audience was too much. Here is what the BBC reports.

There was a moment of drama when a pastor preaching at the outside service told homosexuals to repent, our correspondent reports.

The man warned that they would face the fate of residents in Sodom and Gomorrah, the biblical cities destroyed by God.

He was interrupted, accused of preaching hate, taken away and someone else took over the proceedings, our reporter says.
Well, the family, the LGBT family took matters into their own hands. We buried our loved one. We buried David. And, to hell with the preachers, and all those who hate us. Here is what the Reuters reporter saw.
Scuffles broke out between locals and friends of a murdered Ugandan gay activist at his funeral on Friday after the pastor conducting the service berated gay people and villagers refused to bury the coffin.
"The world has gone crazy," the pastor told the congregation through a microphone.
"People are turning away from the scriptures. They should turn back, they should abandon what they are doing. You cannot start admiring a fellow man."
Gay activists, wearing T-shirts featuring Kato's face with sleeves coloured with the gay pride flag, then stormed the pulpit and grabbed the microphone.
"It is ungodly," the pastor shouted, before being blocked from sight.
An unidentified female activist then began to shout from the pulpit.
"Who are you to judge others?" she shouted. "We have not come to fight. You are not the judge of us. As long as he's gone to God his creator, who are we to judge Kato?"
Locals intervened on the side of the pastor and scuffles broke out before he was taken away to Kato's father's house to calm the situation.
Villagers then refused to bury the body at which point a group of Kato's friends, most of whom were gay, carried his coffin to the grave and buried it themselves.

If anyone ever preaches at MY funeral, I promise to stand up and correct the proceedings…..! LOL!

I have noticed a curious reaction. Many activists are coming out, more, and more emboldened. [sigh. My partner is becoming bolder than I am. Needs a serious talking too…. I cannot remain the voice of reason in this family.]

But, others have fine tuned the old reflexes. They are burrowing deeper. Fearful, closing the closet right round them.
Well, to remind you, it is a Homophobic country. And scenes like these reported by the BBC are just not the norm. It has taken the death of one of us, David Kato, to make this happen.

He (reporter) says hundreds of people - friends, family, colleagues and diplomats - crowded outside Mr Kato's family home in the village of Nakawala in Mukono district, 40km (about 25 miles) from Kampala.

Many members of the lesbian and gay community wore T-shirts with Mr Kato's portrait on the front and the words "La luta continua [the struggle continues]" printed on the back.

I am talking about a mass demonstration of people that they were gay. And proud.

Yes, Uganda is changing.

But, the changes are not very deep.
A Ugandan was killed. Was deprived of the very most basic of human rights. Life.

That doesn’t matter whether it was a gay man, or another person. It was a human being deprived of life.

The reasons don’t matter.
But, what was the reaction of the Police? The murder was actually reported, and police driven to investigate by the gay community. Otherwise, nothing was being done. I am stating a matter of fact.

Then, in typical Ugandan style, (Bless my country), when the international outcry was mounting, and demands on the government to do something, that is when the police mounted some investigations.

I was at David’s place last night, this morning. And, the police had just done a crime scene investigation, the one which was reported about, (and, I believe, for publicity’s sake.). I am told it was reported on NTV news last evening. Curious.

I was impressed at the way that rumours are swilling about the death. I mean, from the populace, from the people around, someone has already been judged guilty. The motives have been ascertained. Seems as if it is a fait accompli.
I commented that I would not trust the police report. That was very harsh, and true. Because, there simply was no way that they could get an other than gambled account of what truly happened if they never made an investigation. That was before the media driven investigation.

What surprised me, and made me hope that something will come up from the investigation, was the fact that David Kisule had set up cameras and an alarm system in his half finished house.
Shows you our level of paranoia. I mean, I do know that David was more paranoid than I am. But, I didn’t know that he had set up cameras in a house that he had not finished. It is a shell, I saw it. And, he thought an alarm system was one of the most important things to install. Fact. Most Ugandans do not have them in their houses. We simply dont.
From those records, we shall possibly know what happened.
And, maybe we shall not be distracted by the rumours that people like the Rolling Pebble editor publish. Yes, I do understand his motivation. He put up the picture of a person, and asked people to ‘Hang them’. Now that that person is dead, the good Christian has to find a reason to justify the death, brutal and callous as that is.
Anyway, I do hope I get to know what transpired, what led to the death of David Kato Kisule. I really hope I do.
Because I am a human being. And, I don’t expect him to be an angel (He would really laugh at that. David was no angel. And never wanted to be!)

But, I would like to see justice visited on his killer.



spiralx said...

Whatever the police come up with, no-one will really believe it. Because they have no moral integrity in the matter. Their past behaviour towards LGBT people is too well-known.

LKT said...

Just wanted you to know that I'm thinking about you, and I'm not alone in that. There are a lot of folks watching at a distance and mourning with you. Stay safe, and blessings.

gayuganda said...

Thanks people, for your comments. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

May the Good Lord save your souls cause what you are doing and believe in is so wrong it hurts era i'm praying for you al! Please repent and seek Gods ways

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