Global Podd 71. The right to offend and be vulgar

Illustration: Shutterstock.

In the third of three special episodes of Global Podd in cooperation with Bloggers of Zambia we discuss cybercrime laws, language and the right to express yourself even if that offends those in power. 

How are totalitarian regimes using cyber crime laws on defamation to attack media and activists? And what are the responsibility of journalists and bloggers when it comes to defamation and ethics? Is it ok to use a vulgar language and to compare a dictatorial president to a pair of buttocks?


  • Daniel Sikazwe, chairman of Bloggers of Zambia.
  • Fatma Karume, barrister from Tanzania, barred from practicing law in her own country.
  • Stella Nyanzi, Ugandan human rights activist, poet, and medical anthropologist.
  • Joan Barata, international expert on media and cyber laws.

Host: David Isaksson, Editor-in-chief of Global Bar Magazine and Global Podd

Free to blog, Free to speak. A special podcast series on freedom of expression in cooperation between Bloggers of Zambia and Global Bar Magazine (Sweden). Episode 3.

Bloggers of Zambia is an emerging, independent and non-profit enterprise working in Internet Governance and Digital Rights, Media Rights and Freedoms and Online Creative Content Management. Read more here.

Listen on Podcaster here

Listen on Libsyn here

Read more about the cooperation project here

Background: Can social media posting put you in jail?

The poet and activist Stella Nyanzi of Uganda was charged for cyber crime for what she wrote on social media. Read Stella Nyanzis original Facebook post the landed her in jail for cyber crime here. And here is an background on the legal process against her in Uganda.

Below the poem of Stella Nyanzi that we are referring to in the discussion.


By Stella Nyanzi

Let’s make love, Son of Kaguta, not rape!
Take off your K95 facial mask; I was tested two nights ago for Corona at your exclusive expensive laboratories.

Kiss me tenderly with your lying lips dripping fast with empty promises that impress the gullible.
Blow between my big breasts your warm breath that smells as foul as the choking tear gas unleashed freely upon enthusiastic opposition actors.

Aaaaaayyyyiiiiii, Son of Kaguta, your bed of lovemaking is as cosy as a bloody battlefield.
Gently massage me with clean bank notes plundered out of money to fight COVID19. 
I am tired of old bank notes stolen from older vaccines, valley dams and other what-what-nots.

Finger me with your chubby digits that press computer keys unlocking Israeli algorithms for rigging the coming presidential election. 
Turn me on with gruesome stories of your torture chambers pseudonymed “safe houses” in which detained Ugandans rot away.

Mmmmm, rub me softly with gun butts, batons, kibokos, bayonets, grenades and AK47s. 
Penetrate me with your military might and ravage me just like you torment Uganda.

Brutalise me as harshly as your SFC brutes brutalised the Parliament of Uganda.
Break me just like you broke the bodies of Betty Nambooze and Francis Zaake, oh Son of Kaguta.

Instead of shooting to kill innocent citizens,
Give me babies with your octogenarian semen.
Oh yes, my big Daddy-Jajja, secure my future
With huge holes torn into the constitution.

Aaaaaaaaah, there’s no other love like your love, oh mighty Son of Kaguta!

Wipe the kisses off my pouting lips with your underwear made from the national flag drenched in blood – fresh and old.
Open your stuffy bedroom to let out the scent of rotting corpses of rioters shot with bullets as they repeatedly chanted “People Power!”
That scent of traumatised Uganda mixes badly with smells of our sex, oh Son of Kaguta.



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