Usually when you pick up a newspaper or switch to a news channel on your television set, you expect the headlines to have some substance, something worthy of reading or watching. Lately, however, the news quality has gone down. I learnt to significantly lower my expectations when it comes to news in Uganda but even for a bottomless pit, there has to be some sort of limit. I stopped watching UBC Television because quality was obviously not one of their goals. The mainstream newspapers once in a while go off track (refer to new visions More Baganda in Revenue than Banyankole) and radio isn't any better.
Wava Broadcasting Corporation (WBS) has recently joined the exclusive club of inept news corporations. Last Sunday there was a feature about some hill called 'Wajinja' somewhere in Masaka. The news lasted a whopping 20 minutes (that's as long as I could handle. It could have lasted longer) but 15 of those were about this hill. It's named after some local god and according to the traditional healer, whatever you pray for on this heal is granted. Apparently the baganda prayed for a Nabagereka (Queen) and they got one. What crap is this? How can you attribute some natural instinct to some demi god? This was the least of it's ludicrous assumptions. It has a foot print of the first Muganda king, kintu, a sitting room like setting and drums. These drums are made of stone and make no sound whatsoever. How can they be called drums. Now here comes the most ridiculous assumption. Apparently, some teenagers were having sex on the stones and they were swallowed up. What? How can a reputable (Sorry my mistake) News broadcaster spend 15 minutes on this garbage? If they had no news, they should have ended it and not subjected us to this nonsense. The journalistic content is not being degraded by bad journalists. It's being degraded by the people who give these journalists the time and forum to show their imcompetence.
I have tried to ignore the Red pepper stories about Nibiru. There are so many versions of this from the same paper that the editor should just resign over those conflicting stories. The story broke with Nibiru striking earth and all people perishing. Understandable if it was some sort of asteroid. The next day, the same paper claimed that the earth would be split, continents divided etc. This is still believable till they came up with some rubbish parents tell their kids when they have refused to eat their supper. Nibiru is going to strike earth and unleash some giant beast. These will kill all the men and rape all the women. What? All this after claiming we'd all die when it strikes earth. They then got a photo taken by mars orbiter and claimed it was a nibiru beast. How can a reputable-sorry my mistake-how can a newspaper start quoting a cult? Yes the Nibiru story started with a cult. I have done my research. The worst part about all this is that I heard a grown man discussing this with his peers, trying to convince them that this piece of useless journalism is actually true and that all they said will happen. He even referred to the bible. With such kind of press and free thinking humans, all I can say is We are a doomed species.
I have resolved not to watch WBS news anymore or read the first two pages of Red pepper (They are their vain attempt at the news). I will stick to what they do best, KIMANSULO