President Idi Amin of Uganda today (Saturday) announced that 23,000 Asians with Ugandan passports must now also leave the country, along with more than 50,000 who hold British passports that he ordered out earlier this month.
SV Asian family at table
CU Members of family eating (3 shots)
SV African family examining and trying bed (3 shots)
SV PAN bedding on floor and furniture
SV Asian women packing suitcases
GV PAN wall with barbed wire and glass
CU Man holding cancelled "Indian Empire" passport (2 shots)
SV and CU Asian women cooking (2 shots)
SV Asian family praying at home altar (4 shots)
SV Asian man into car and drives away (2 shots)
SOF STARTS: Behind all the promises from Britain and the threats from Uganda lies the personal tragedy of Demji Varoo. More than 50,000 people like him in Uganda alone are being forced to live out these days - the leaders and statesmen only talk about them. Each day now, groups of Africans are touring Asian houses, demanding what they can buy. From now on the Varoo family will have to sleep on the concrete floor. The beds fetched two pounds apiece and the purchasers made sure the springs were well tested, while Demji and the rest looked on. The television set is already wrapped up for transport - it cost GBP90 and sold for GBP40. Gradually, as the rooms are cleared, the family packs the bed linen and the thin clothes with which they'll face a winter such as they cannot really imagine. Demji, a solicitor's clerk, has supported his wife, three children and his elderly parents in the this house for ten years. They built the walls high, they say, and put barbed wire and broken glass on the top not to keep Africans, but thieves, out. Old Ramji,the father, had a contractor's business employing 40 Africans - and a passport issued in the days when Britain had an Empire
And Ramji fought for that Raj in three Continents. Now its all gone. The family is living frugally on beans and lentil soup, because they don't know how much money they'll have to pay to get to Britain. They pray a lot, to pictures of Hindu Gods, but the children have a special prayer: its about snow. The last item to go will be the car - regarded as a family life line to get them out of here as a last resort before that day in November when General Amin has promised he'll make those ignoring the ultimatum feel as though they are sitting on fire."
Initials OS/2304 OS/2319
NOTE: This film has a BBC Commentary - transcript of which follows. An alternative commentary can be found overleaf.
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: President Idi Amin of Uganda today (Saturday) announced that 23,000 Asians with Ugandan passports must now also leave the country, along with more than 50,000 who hold British passports that he ordered out earlier this month. While the British Government has been studying what is to be done about the first 50,000, the new order is likely to become a United Nations matter.
Out of these nearly 80,000 Asians who now suddenly find themselves stateless and homeless -- the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) filmed one family in kampala last week. Demji Varoo, his wife, three children and elderly parents, must leave their home of ten years by the November 5th deadline set by President Amin. Like the others, he must register his home or business with the Government, who will control all such sales. Only their personal effects can be sold privately -- and this is what Demji and his family are doing.....at a lose.