By Alex Balimwikungu
Since President Yoweri Museveni finally signed into law the NSSF (Amendment) Bill, 2021, my phone has not stopped buzzing. Some exes and long lost relatives I’d never heard from in decades are quizzical about my age. “Are you 45 yet?” some have bluntly put it. It is at such a time that I have chosen to act like many Kampala women – keep my true age to myself.
Suddenly, since the pronouncement by the presidential press secretary that members aged 45 and above who have saved for at least a decade are eligible for midterm access of 20% of their savings, they have become an endangered species. That is beside the point. The real issue is; what will you do with that money when the alert from the bank notifies you that millions have hit your account? I do not envisage a scenario that once hit Mukono at the height of the vanilla boom.
One chap, perhaps sniffing millions for the first time, hired a fleet of cars, bodabodas and police patrol lead car to escort him to the bank to make a transaction. He paid everyone.
In this case, we are dealing with people who, through the course of their employment, have interacted with money. The midterm access is a boon that will cause excitement still. If you fall in that category, how best can you handle?
Chill with the big boys
We are a nation that sees cement and bricks in money we get. Sometimes it is okay to eat that money. For starters, there is no harm in chilling with the big boys. Eat that life with a big spoon.
You’ve lived through life quietly hating on chaps who flaunt the luxurious life, albeit with dodgy reputations. It is your chance to do the same. You have fantasised about that Moet or Dom Perignon, buy it. Eat to your heart’s content. You’ve fantasised about pizza, delicately grilled chicken breasts or T-bone steak? You can have them delivered at your doorstep with just one dial. This jet-set lifestyle could leave you yawning within weeks.
With this windfall, you could turn things around for the better in the bedroom. Slowly, the lips of your wife, which you had relegated to cooling porridge for the kids, will look kissable
Spice things up in the bedroom
At 45 or above, many married people are immersed in care-giver roles. As a result, sex lives are just functional. As a husband, you don’t exactly set the world on fire in the bedroom although somehow you get the job done.
In life we need two basic things; a good pair of shoes and a good bed for the simple reason that if you are not in the shoes, you are in the bed. With this windfall, you could turn things around for the better in the bedroom. Slowly, the lips of your wife, which you had relegated to cooling porridge for the kids, will look kissable.
Get that dream car
Many people here drive functional cars. The sight of a burly-framed grey-haired man slouched in a Vitz or Yaris yelling at bodabodas at a traffic intersection is a common sight. For many people, cars are about getting you from point A to point B. We all have dream cars. I believe once you have the dream car, the dream becomes reality and it most likely to make you happy.
Go on vacation
A widely held notion was that vacations are not a Ugandan thing. Thank God, it is beginning to change. A vacation will help lower stress levels and contribute to personal satisfaction. You can hit the talcum-powdered sand beaches of Zanzibar. When you break away from the familiar rhythm, you attain some perspective on life. There is nothing that will make your problems seem small like watching the rolling waves at the ocean.
Go make it official
This mainly applies to men who are married on credit. You know that time when sleep attacks you in the bedroom and as you wander off into dreamland, ‘madam’ wakes you up. She has this pained look. It is the same question you have mumbled incoherent answers to.
“When are you visiting my parents or when are you wedding me?”
Such questions are known to rob men of any decent wink of sleep after they are asked. You could use this money to solemnise your relationship. Once that is done, the bed will shake regularly and the house will be stable.
Sex and the sugar daddy
Here is where Sheebah Karungi’s song, YOLO, comes in handy. It is not haram if you engage in some fantasy. Transactional sex culture has become pervasive in this country. The so-called “sponsor culture” has drawn young attractive young woman into intimate sexual affairs with wealthy older men in exchange for financial benefits. Today, we have young women talking openly about their pursuit of happiness financed by wealthy benefactors. With the midterm access, I know some will be swayed to spend a fortune on Viagra and illicit sex. There is need to tread carefully here.
Don’t burn your bridges
Give a man money and their true character will come out. For some, having millions on their accounts will make their egos swell. They will not have qualms writing their own rules.
Absenteeism from work, not listening to counsel and other ills will come with having money. For all you do, don’t run your ego to your employers or supervisors. Burn your bridges at work at your own peril.