Mending a Horrible Relationship

By on August 24, 2015

If you’re new in town, I will have you know that recent times have been hard on the Ugandan shilling. So many unkind and vulgar words have been used to describe the frail shilling in the past weeks one would think the poor Shilling is in an abusive relationship with the Dollar. It has become apparent that in this relationship the dollar is practicing quite a lot of brachioproctic eroticism (It’s a nasty word – don’t Google it!) and all the Shilling can do right now is swallow as many pain killers as possible and hope for the best.

It’s a very horrible relationship that the two are engaged in.

I am even hearing rumours that many people now have clients demanding to be paid in dollars. A friend of mine recently fired his Askari because the guy apparently demanded his wages in dollars. I won’t be shocked if both my Boda Boda guy and washing lady ask to be paid in dollars.

Basically everyone is tired of the shilling.

Companies offering products and services with dollar prices attached are unrelenting in their price hikes. There is a current wave of uproar on social media stemming from a leaked DSTV communication which seemed to suggest a forthcoming price increase in Pay-TV rates by a whopping 28%. All this because of the dollar. Things are simply not looking good for the now violated and still bleeding shilling.

Dollar madness

I am no expert at economics and I can confidently say that I have no idea when this whole circus will end or if it will ever end. What I do know though is that it seems this whole shilling vs dollar madness is getting to everyone’s head.

A few days ago, Lucy (obviously not actual name), a friend of mine who was lucky to get paid by a client in dollars, witnessed firsthand why the dollar has suddenly become a big deal. Lucy was followed by three men for nearly half an hour just because one of them had seen her with a single hundred dollar bill. And while this money can do substantial damage on the Happy Hour front or even secure a fair number of plates of Pork and Posho at The Junction, I’d like to think that it isn’t the kind of money anyone should lose sleep over. Or the kind of money that should put someone’s life in danger.

The dollar madness is getting out of hand!

Ugandas-Latest-new-notesIt’s like people are tired of seeing these notes. (Photo credit –

Light bulb moments

I am personally starting to think about renegotiating my contract with my current employer so that I too get paid in dollars, after all, we are all getting tired of the Ugandan shilling. Better yet, why doesn’t Mukubwa Mutebile wake up one morning and declare that we are no longer using the Ugandan Shilling as legal tender but rather the nice crispy US dollar. We could give our beloved Shilling a six-month break in which time she can go back home to her parents and get pampered, loved and cherished like she ought to be.

During this six months period, we can flash around our dollars and talk about how many dollars we will spend on our weddings or parties. We can even have bars and hang out places introduce dollar nights where nothing is served to anyone using the momentarily outlawed Ugandan shilling.

Let’s have an entire system reboot – a total overhaul!

empty-uganda-parliament (1)If the MPs weren’t so bloody absent we could have this passed ASAP! (Photo credit

Everyone will agree that the switch from shillings to dollars would help us especially with the tourism front. I am told that when our local currency is struggling against international currency, it does not necessarily help the tourism sector. As a matter of fact, tourists are worried that they will be required to carry around sacks of money to be able to run their shopping errands in the country.

There is only one individual who is allowed to walk around with money in sacks and we all know who that is. But that is not the purpose of this blog post. So we shall steer clear of that sack money and focus on this brilliant idea for our battered missus the Ugandan shilling.

Let us suspend the shilling for half a year. Six months is time enough for any woman to get back in shape after proper feeding, pampering and indulgence. Also, six months is time enough for us to use the American dollar, mock it, miss our own gorgeous Ugandan shilling and then return to our pretty old currency – but with crisp clean notes. No need to hold onto what is increasingly becoming a relic.

The Currency Olympics

Over the past few years, social media has been awash with jokes about Zimbabwean currency so much that one is barely excited when they are being paid in Zimbabwean dollars.  Our beloved shilling sadly seems to be on that beaten path towards the country side where the Zimbwabwean dollar is chief and calls all the shots because it owns a huge chunk of the country side.

As a matter of fact, we might earn automatic qualification for the Worthless Currency Olympics in which there will be formidable challengers like the sneaky Vietnamese Dong, the ruthless Iranian Rial, the skilled São Tomé and Príncipe Dobra, the experienced Indonesian Rupiah, the consistent Belarusian Ruble and the record holding Zimbabwean dollar. Of course the Shilling would need to train long and hard to even have a chance to qualify for the second heat.

Very tough opposition we would be up against. We could start slow and then pick up pace and momentum as the race comes to an end then eventually we too would be worthy contenders. Just a matter of time.

Seriously though …

As already mentioned somewhere in this blog, I am no expert at money matters or the economy at large. However, I am a simple dude who hopes that when companies increase prices because of dollar rates, they should remember that if Mutebile and his fixers eventually manage to bring down the rates, they (the profit hungry companies) should be willing to cut their rates as well. Don’t be like the fuel companies that increase fuel prices whenever there is a fuel crisis but never quite remember to bring the prices down when the crisis has been averted. Daylight robbery!

As the experts try to find solutions to this damaged relationship between the Uganda Shilling and the Dollar, I will urge Ugandans to keep calm and try to do things that will help us take our minds off financial matters. Attend the awesome poetry recital  The Man-You-Script slated for 5th September at the National Theatre, listen to some Apass and Eddy Kenzo music on a daily basis, add the Qwela Junction “The Sax Aces” concert to your to-do list and continue to follow the potential presidential aspirants; all 60 of them.

“While money can’t buy happiness, it certainly lets you choose your own form of misery.” ― Groucho Marx

a.k.a Beewol
The Talkative Rocker
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Beewol – The Talkative Rocker

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Baldie. Ailurophile. Social Media Junkie. Blogger. Pluviophile. Fixer. Sober Drunkard.
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  • JD

    I will drink to that closer

  • Yessir!

  • Esther

    You should know what came to mind when I read that title… This piece needs to reach the owners asp. Meanwhile I doubt Ugandans can look back when they switch to dollars.

    • hahaha Sorry this isn’t the ‘relationship’ you had in mind 😛