The Company And Uganda’s first ship

In tune with mordern trends we now have legally established companies opened and run under the ambit of one man. Giving him let and withall to, sit at a desk conduct mischief then wash his hands of the matter, declaring that the mischief was done by Monex Ltd the corporation and not Monex the natural being; in which case Monex the natural man ought not to be tried and persecuted rather Monex the Company ought to be quartered and if necessary prosecuted.

In its historical setting the company or corporation,was an artificial device specifically created to be a distinct legal entity removed and separated from its several individual owners. Indeed and renown authority wrote and stated:

” Its a collection of many individuals united into one body, under a special denomination, having perpetual succession under an artifical form…vested, by policy of the law and with the capacity of acting, in sebral respects as an individual particularly of taking and granting property, of co reacting obligations, and of suing and being sued in its own right…”Steward Kyd , A treatise on the Law of Corporations.

Against this backdrop the companies of old obtained charters or dubious sovereign authority to carve out huge portions of Africa and India, famous for its spices, for lopsided trade. The instrument for this trade in East Africa was the, grandiosely named Imperial British East African Company founded by one William Macckinon. His brief was clear and his instrument included a connecting road from Lake Victoria to Mombasa and a big ship commanding the waters of Lake Victoria; the SS William Macckinon; such brazen modesty.

The ship built in Scotland was sent down to East Africa but it would not be reassembled for a long time owing to lack of money and some feud that had arisen between: the Kabaka, the Protestant, The Catholics and the Company. (I will dwell on this conflict in a subsequent missive.) The lack of funds compelled William to donate the ship to Uganda Steamers and Ferries; the first ship in Uganda.

I was reminded of this when forced to travel across a ferry without which a part of Uganda would be completely cut off from the other.

Customer harrasmentĀ 

This is a personal rant from our banana republic. Consider a reasonable  person who on his own volition goes to super market, and an undesirable assistant emerges demanding to help you, the hungry voyager stops at Namawojjolo to purchase roast chicken and these chaps thrust all strange pieces in your face; stampeding you choice and jeopardising free will.

This is a marked difference from a certain meat selling rendezvous where after paying a fixed fee you eat until you voluntarily tilt the Gorilla to signify satisfaction. When the gorilla is seated upright the waiters will, wait on you, works without end; the seated gorilla cheering them on, as if, with whistles and enthusiastic gesticulation.

I do not like shopping. Having once coaxed myself into a shop my preference is individual recklessness not hurried or spurred on by obnoxious strangers. I mean there is pressure enough by the tricks attendant to product positioning. We ought not to bring prostitute’s ethics in buyers space. 

Ruling the world and what is M7 smoking.

We have heard and read stories of great conquests. How this Mongolian chap captured vast territories and Napoleon too with great desires to conquer Russia which proved difficult to swallow and he met his water loo.

The communist China today is very bsuy doing capitalist things and is the major trading partner of several African countries. Business in China is fast paced, dynamic and you blink u miss. 

I had an engagement with a Chinese  chap and within five minutes a bond had been formed; enough for him to ask if I was ready to sign up for a multi million USD deal. In order to sign my Ugandan partners needed to give me an OK. A quick call and I was instructed to first return to Uganda and discuss. Its three years and we are still discussing. Stuck in the impasse of Government etuyambe.

The new world order favours the quick. People who are dynamic and embrace ambiguity. People with the ability to chew gum while juggling conflicting balls in the air. The race belongs to the swift.

Since December we have been suffering holiday hangover. The lethargy in Government offices and an I don’t care attitude; how shall we become a middle income country.  While the goal is laudable the weakest link is the human resources… Attitudes, attitudes attitudes! What is M7 smoking to have confidence in such a hopless lot!

Onduparaka

With a mouthful of a name, it’s diehard fans swear its an abbreviation, dark and lanky with a passionate and most enthusiastic followers they hold in their palms the future of Uganda’s football dreams. How they emerged to prominence is a tale worthy of legends; having killed giants to take their rightful place in the field of men.

From the heartland of what once constituted Lado Republic they streamed in droves to battle the name that once sent chills across East Africa, Gor Mahia!

The rain’s valiant attempt to dampen spirits fell flat and drums, and whistles, and vuvuzelas, and carrying human voices carried sway in Namboole Stadium; there was enough excitement and the air was thick with pregnant expectation. 

A mistimed ball almost caused a collective heart attack. Recovering from this blunder Onduparka, all the way from west Nile scored …loud sirens, deafening applause echoed through the stadium bouyed on by the latest supporter; a famous two finger waving politician. 

It helps to watch football in beautiful company and even better when a mutual convergence of likes is catalysed by a beauteous win. From here it can only bet bigger and better! Key points to keep in mind are : focus, determination, and discipline…..Bravo little caterpillars.

Value Added and Value Creation; lessons from Chef

Lately I have been taking more than a cursory interest in food TV shows; where chef on the edge of madness strive to take food to the next level. In the process propelling them to great heights as celebrities with great.economic rewards. I have seen and watched appprentice cooks pushed to great extremes to transform ordinary ingredients into amazing dishes, elevated and respected.

Then there is the whole matter of plating or “mise end place” putting everything in place. It takes a whole meal into an art form. The lessons involving leadership, passion, teamwork, creativity and customer satisfaction are the pillars of the culinary arts.  Tell me which one does not apply to your organization.

Behind all this rush and bustle there is a process, a line and a pass plus clear roles for all the players inna high end diner.

But all those are matters for another day. What I wanted to highlight was the value addition; in these TV shows are the chefs selling food or selling entertainment? For the costs of the plate might not bring the jets and the limos but the entrance of TV did. The TV is value addition and for that they get paid top dollar.

Think about it from a potato, a coffee grown in KASESE Ruwenzori Mountains, through the millers until its brought on screen to be appreciated by billions across the globe. How far can you go with value addition? When you figure that out send me the thank you cheque. Arrevedici.

The Faint Heart. (A short Story)

I watched Auric bypass a particular gate once, twice, thrice; all the time craning his neck as if to will it to by pass the obstacles in his path like a snake necked Camera. I recognized, instantaneously, the symptoms. (The busy reader is advised to devote his time to his daily toil for pelth as this yarn will not add an iota to your purse or to render wisdom to your head. This is one of those idle ones conceived by a near demented soul battling insomnia.)

Just a few day previously, and just one hundred metres from the very spot I had been conducting the exact maneuvers. It was the maneuver of a faint hearted lover propelled by his desires to see the object of his amorous torments, but lacks sufficient courage to cross the threshold into her conpund where he might confess his desires. Quick as a whistle, I took to looking for assistants; I had hatched a grand scheme that would be the fuel for the courage he lacked.

I needed a willing conspirator; this one after bouts of hilarious laughter consented to avail me the use of her handwriting to write what was written which I now disclose,

“Dear Auric,

Hope this letter finds you well. I had hoped you would be at home when I came but you were not around. A bit disappointing …we have lots to talk about. See you soon

Love C.

dedication: Lady in Red.

I rubbed my hand in glee basking in awe of my intelligence. I then sought conspirator number two. With a sweet in the hand I told an innocent young man to deliver it to the besotted swain and to swear to the heavens that, “some girl had delivered the said letter.”

And so there I was at my command post, reading a comic book with bland jokes like:

Man A: Every time I close my eyes I see green pigs.

Man B: Have you seen a Doctor?

Man A: No …only green pigs.

In short dry and bland jokes to while away the idle hour. In bursts a blubbering swain, letter in hand. Smiling from ear to ear. I took the letter from his outstretched hand and after reading it pronounced the verdict.

“You must see her! No girl after overcoming the veil of modesty and writing to her lover needs the lover to leave her unattended.” 

Shushing his protestations I egged him on. Now a crowd of his peers had gathered and the strength of our eyes on his back was just about enough to push him through the gates. He emerged ten minutes later. Up to this day he has never told us what exactly transpired.