Him Again – a letter from Kampala

A spectre is haunting Africa — the spectre of Amin.

“Amin walked the path of, and confirmed the long, European-established and firmly held narrative of the rampaging beast in the interior of faraway Africa whose description and denunciation has made many a missionary, political and literary career. That is why we can still have stories about him, and why as a figure, his presence in our politics has become a thing apart from the general narrative of the dysfunctional politics necessitated by attempting the governing of the continuing colonial project called Uganda.”

So writes Kalundi Serumaga in his “letter from Kampala” that explores the construction, perpetuation and implications of “Aminism”: something that existed long before Amin ever did – a role, a slot waiting for him to occupy, and render visceral and contemporary. “For as long as he was not real, he could be invented. But he had to exist, eventually.”

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