Watching the video of the “Monster maid” as one of the dailies described her is terribly saddening, actually, breathtakingly annoying. Truly I have done my best to be objective on this one, the consequences of the torture (only seen on-screen) notwithstanding.
To my knowledge, at the time of penning this micro-article, the accused was found mentally sound, and her charge-sheet amended from Causing Grievous bodily harm to attempted murder. Of course, the question as to why she opted to be a ‘Monster maid’ may not be put into consideration by the trial court, I guess not even in mitigation.
I then ask myself, why and when on earth do maids become ‘monsters’. I am not basing my discussion on the accused but on a wide range of conversations about the experiences from friends, and my kin. I proceed under the understanding that Human nature is shoed around premise that we are all born that way “beasts”. But our civilisation; religion, parenting, some education, and coercive powers of the state put us back into shape. It is further argued that in the absence of civilisation we are capable of doing what the ‘monster maid’ did and even worse.
There are quite a number of reasons as to why a maid would lose all her civilisation; which i will discuss well knowing it is immaterial to her case, but perhaps may be relevant to the surviving employers, especially those with children.
When placed in any society, different from where you were born and bred, any normal human being will try to fit in that particular society, so do maids. Brought up in a village in Bugamba or Rubanda (no defamation intended) they try to fit in a society in Kampala, with cookers and LED TVs, of course not in accordance with what the employer envisioned while ferrying her all the way to Kampala.
It goes from barring her from watching a TV program, even which translated in a language she can understand, to denying her meals for she is turning in efficient in the employer’s opinion. I know may employers how have the powers to utilise the whip when the maid in question becomes ‘big headed’ the situation becomes tougher for any maid when her boss lady comes to a realisation that she is preying along her most important interests, her marital bed and her husband – unfortunately even a mere suspicion may earn her the torture you would expect from a safe house.
It is imperative to note that in such circumstances, lady in the home is the boss; she does the appraisal, sets the targets and spells out the daily duties. As such, it is commonly not in the man’s jurisdiction; in effect intervening in matters of disciplining the house maid and not side with the ‘lady of the home’ is suicidal; it confirms her suspicions as earlier mentioned….
To the belief of many employers, the house maid is ideally a work-horse that never tires, in their opinion she was bought from Bugamba or Rubanda (no defamation intended) to work, not to sit on her lazy arse; that she is not paid to rest but to work…!! In contrast her employer leaves home at 7.00am and returns by 8.00pm, tired from sitting behind a computer and working on the telephone, the house maid is on her feet the whole day, slaving from chore to chore, any rational thinker would wish her to retire earlier than 12.00am. Human nature!!
In my opinion, many times the beast in the house maids, though well tamed may be forced out by the circumstances that occur in the course of the course of their employment, bad bosses. This might explain the transferred malice like that in the ‘Monster maid’ video clip, or sexual assault or other grievous acts that are committed by the house maids today.
My words are not intended to down play what we all saw in the video, nor do they give a defence to the house maids that have gone rogue. They are such as to show, employers and my readers that human nature sometimes acts in a sense that you reap what you saw! There are various stories to the effect that there are success stories of good maids and nannies. How they did it i also don’t know.
I must a point of concern that many other ‘monster maids’ may do what whatever grievous act or omission as they may choose out of envy, as they may envy where your success; wealth, adorable children. Lastly, the nature – nurture question; some human beings depending on where they and how they were raised may turn into what they are today, beasts or angels. This principle gives no exceptions to house maids.
Finally it must be remembered it costs you less to treat your employee with respect, especially one who has the power to kill you in your sleep; or to render your child psychologically stressed at the age of one. The UGX 100,000- you pay is just not enough to buy yourself a slave. It is only a matter of luck that you are in the position you are in and not hers.