Uganda Museum | November, 2016

The full title of this exhibition is Updates – Six Investigations into the Use of Photographs in Ugandan News Media. It is related to part of the content of Ebishushani #3, All the Tricks, Elly Rwakoma. The heart of this book shows photographs made by Rwakoma on the occasion of a political rally that took place September 19th 1979, during which a panic broke out. Elly Rwakoma remembers this as an attack on President Binaisa. Only after the book was published was I able to follow up on his story. News media have either ignored the event (and refused to publish Elly’s photographs), or published a significantly different version of the story. The first appearances of these media reports led to several conversations about photographs in Ugandan news media (Feb. 2016), a workshop, this exhibition, and a discussion at the occasion of its opening. All of these were organised by the Uganda Press Photo Award.

This workshop, in which Max Bwire, Zahara Abdul, Jim Joel, Katumba Badru and Irene Kimuli participated, resulted in six books that present a small research into one particular topic or event, based on the newspaper collection of Makerere University.

While we were working in the Africana section of the university library, we came across a strikingly liberal newspaper I had not hear of before with the name The People. In the December 12 1966 issue I noticed a striking article by Prof. Ali Mazrui, with a high urgency for the exhibition and its background. The article was available as part of a handout with the exhibition (that opened exactly 50  years after the article was published) and can be read fully here.

Documentation made by Canon Griffin.