Kony campaign raises disapproval in northern Uganda

Friday 16th, March 2012 / 10:42 Written by


Copyirght: Eric Schwartzman

After receiving some harsh criticism there will not be further public viewings of the Kony 2012 movie in northern Uganda. The campaign which has gone viral on the internet in the last weeks was deprecated by the audience in many towns. Some people who have been personally affected by activities of Kony’s Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) blamed the campaign for “celebrating suffering”.

The African Youth Initiative Network (AYINET) intended to show the movie, which has reached more than one hundred million people online in just a few days, to those who do not have internet access themselves. In northern Uganda though, where the LRA’s activities – including kidnapping children, systematically abusing girls and forcing boys to become child soldiers – initially began, the movie was notably perceived to be insensitive.

Many people were reported to have left the first public screening in the town of Lira while the movie was still running. According to Victor Ochen, a member of AYINET, “people kept on getting upset”, with some throwing stones in outrage over what they called “celebrating suffering”.

Ochen further stated:

They were wondering: ‘If this is about northern Uganda, how come it’s dominated by non-Ugandans? What is it about now? This is an insult’.”

The terror committed by members of the LRA started more than twenty years ago as Kony promoted political independence based on a Christian principles for the Ancholi people in northern Uganda and has reached the neighbouring countries of South Sudan, the DRC and the Central African Republic. Since the campaign was launched by the Invisible Children network it has not only experienced unexpected spread but also a lot of criticism.


eufrika.org: Have you heard of this man? – A comment on Kony 2012

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About the author

Marius Münstermann is based in Berlin where he works as a freelance journalist. Marius serves as editor-in-chief at eufrika.org.

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