I like reading Ugandan news when I’m feeling low. There’s always something interesting in there; sometimes inspiring, most times hilarious. This story however, I heard about before I read and it was so good, I looked it up so I could share it.
Apparently, the Ugandan government has somehow misplaced 30,000 goats. I try not to find this hilarious but the core concept tickles me to tears. What makes it worse is how it’s being handled in the news. Instead of calling a spade a spade and saying it’s a scam, they’re talking about the matter as if these are potentially magical ninja goats that got tired of captivity and bounced.
Ninja Goat 1: Hey, what’s up Billy? You’re looking sad.
Ninja Goat 2: I don’t know, man. I’m tired of this. Why are we just bundled up here like it’s a concentration camp? We are ninja goats! We should be free to roam the plains!!
Ninja Goat 1: Right? I say we blow this popsicle stand. [screams] Who’s with me?
[30,000 ninja goats bleet in agreement]
Ninja Goat 2: Aiight then, let’s do it.
And the goats were gone. We laugh, but this would’ve been an actual passable excuse.
Remember this is Africa. Not 2 years ago in Nigeria a goat was arrested for armed robbery. The logic was that the actual human culprit performed some black magic and transformed into a goat. And so Nigerian Police detained, charged and investigated the small mammal.
What if Ugandan Police chose to say the goats magically vanished into thin air, who’d be the wiser? There’s already been talks about how goats are evil demonic creatures(re: Baphomet) so how far fetched would it really be to scream ‘juju’ and ‘black magic’?
To bring it closer to home – and take another angle – just the other day a certain MP allegedly lost a certain ridiculous amount of cash while taking a leak in the airport(and then blamed bloggers for it). How, now in a region like this can one not get away with saying ‘Oops, I lost 30,000 goats’? It is pretty likely, right?
In reality what happened was that the UG government had some sort of programme that involved buying goats, breeding and exporting them. They started off with 3,000(which seems inordinately low for national export) and this many years down the line, about 30,000 kids have been birthed. However, in a weird twist none of those are accounted for. And now that they’re looking for them, they are nowhere to be found.
This is supposedly a big deal because goats in Museveni-land cost a million shillings a pop. So a few arithmetics later, you find that this is a multi-billion shilling scam.
A multi-billion shilling scam involving potentially ninja goats. Or not. Maybe they were imaginary and never even happened. I’m willing to bet they can’t even account for the original 3,000 goats.
The details are ultimately of no consequence because at the end of the day, no matter how it’s cooked up and/or served, only the government will eat while the people of Uganda will have to foot the bill for this mess.
…and that’s where it stops being funny.
PS: You can ask Yoweri Museveni what happened to the goats at Mindspeak this Saturday, April 30th. Entry is free.