Matembe: Uganda is now Orwell’s Animal Farm


Those who were saviours in 1986 have turned into destroyers. Uganda is now Orwell’s Animal Farm, according to senior citizen, also former MP and minister, Miria Matembe.

Animal Farm is an allegorical and dystopian novella by George Orwell, reflecting events leading up to the Russian Revolution of 1917 and then on into the Stalinist era of the Soviet Union.

Using the greediest animals [pigs] as his lead characters, Orwell demonstrates how simply political dogma can be turned into malleable propaganda.

Appearing on NBS TV Wednesday, Matembe said God is very angry with the nature of leadership in Uganda today where the poor are getting poorer just like in Animal Farm where animals suffer worse under the leadership of animals than they suffered under rule of humans [farmer Jones].

Matembe asked religious leaders in Uganda to come out and condemn what is wrong and commend what is right.

“After Speaker Rebecca Kadaga went to the shrine, I expected Ugandans to publicly go down on their knees before God and repent.”

She urged Ugandans to go before God and repent saying the road carnage is because God is angry.

“When I see President Museveni say he is rich, I look back to when he walked onto Kampala, using his hat to rub his sweat.”

She continued: “I saw IGP Kale Kayihura say “Nini, we are going to use canes… nini” And you expect such a man to deal with his errant officers?”

According to her, IGP Kale Kayihura and President Museveni don’t have new hearts.

“Have you heard the president say anything about police brutality? What hurts me is that Kayihura was one of those who went to the bush to fight an unjust government. I sympathise with his soul.”

Matembe maintained that elections were rigged, wrong results were announced and that FDC had the evidence but they were not allowed to bring it.

“Ever since removal of term limits, Uganda took a wrong turn. Nobody will remove President Museveni apart from himself.”

She added: “Uganda doesn’t belong to President Museveni or Kizza Besigye but to Ugandans and their posterity. Dialogue should be mindful of that.”


Orwell in his allegorical fable painted the picture of greedy militaristic despots through his main character, Napoleon (a prize boar).

Napoleon’s right-hand man was Squealer, a nomenclature of spy and informer taking the shape of modern government spies who bug or record politicians on tapes unknowingly.

With the help of Squealer, Napoleon was able to banish Snowball, a symbol of democracy and reinstate totalitarianism which they fought against while still under the maltreatment of farmer, Jones.

By the end of the book, Napoleon, a pig is much alike humans than farmer Jones himself.

One of the characters, Benjamin the donkey is reputed for having philosophically said: “what goes around always comes around” to summarise the failure of the Russian Revolution.

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