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Month November 2012

Uganda is likely to have no trees left by the year 2052 How can this challenge be arrested urgently


Uganda is likely to have no trees left by the year 2052: How can this challenge be arrested urgently?

Five months ago, I traveled by road from Nairobi heading to Jinja. While on the way, I noticed the vegetation in some areas along Nairobi-Nakuru road was dry, short, and sparse. It was more of dessert like setting! On the other hand, I visibly discovered also some efforts made in the past to promote tree planting were paying-off. Young trees were blossoming around the boundaries of most the homes and along the main road.

Uganda could also borrow a leaf from her neighbor since its existing forests are sadly vanishing at an alarming rate. Soils have grossly become barren while bio-diversity and eco-system services are nearly no more. According to Anthony Bugembe, (New Vision, July 2009), between 1971 and 1987, Uganda lost 50% of its forests due to civil and political strife, including virtually all of its primary forests. Between 1990 and 2005, Uganda lost 26% of its remaining forest cover, a rate that is the seventh highest among the 62 countries worldwide that have tropical forests. In addition, out of the nearly 3.6 million hectares of forest land left in 2005, the country loses 2.1% every year, or 92,000 hectares.

The growth in Forestry activities slightly declined from 2.9% percent in 2009/10 to 2.8 percent in 2010/11 (MAAIF, 2001: v). “At this rate, there will be no forests left by the year 2052,”Anthony concluded! How can this development challenge be steadily arrested?

It is possible to walk the talk and curtail the projected absolute deforestation. First and foremost, all stakeholders need to reflect critically on why they seem to be relaxed and silent about this key issue, its underlying causes, and finally what have to be practically done to address it at different levels. The lag in the efforts and silence is possibly attributed to lack of strict enforcement, and compliance with existing policies, laws and procedures, vested interests, ignorance, ‘I don’t care attitude’, and selfishness. The politicization of the Annual Environmental Day’ in Uganda is very absurd. It is obviously not the right event for citing litanies of past achievements of the political regime and making future empty promises. Policy makers have categorically rejected the desired but pragmatic direction-written on the hearts of the subjects they lead. A clean, healthy, beneficial, green and sustainably managed environment is what we passionately need.

With an estimated 82,811 km2 of arable land, 41,406km2 of cultivatable land, 1,422,193 Ha under bush (MAAIF, 2001: vii), and 3.95 million households engaged Agriculture and accounting for 19.3 million persons (Uganda Census of Agriculture (UCA) 2008/09), it is justifiably possible to review, legislate, and implement policies and programmes without delay that will support households to access and use this idle-lying and fragmented chunk of land for tree planting.

Under the same policy arrangement, household members should be tasked to plant trees around boundaries of their homes and farms. Uganda can take advantage of the explosive household growth rate to expand its thinning forest resources. The total number of households in Uganda is reported to have trended upwards by 19.2 percentage points from 5.2 million in 2005/06 to 6.2 million in 2009/10 (UNHS, 2009/10:8). With only this approach of ‘Agro-Home Forestry’, more than three million estimated hectares will be under new tree cover. Besides, entrepreneurs may also be supported by the same policy to gather, market tree seeds and seedlings at reasonable prices! The new policy should however have a special place for households and individuals considered vulnerable. For example, tree seeds and seedlings could be distributed to such persons at a stipulated price or quantity subsidy say (50-10%), on a designed loan scheme, or they could provide labour in exchange for the inputs.

Low income households should be supported to acquire access and hire land for tree planting. It is a secure way of raising education fees for children. If one acre of trees is planted for a child starting her primary education, the returns from the sale of timber or logs after seven-to- ten years are more than enough to meet her educational costs at any university in the world. Tree planting has the potential to contribute significantly to expansion of a skilled and literate population in Uganda and fast economic growth rates.
Furthermore, a clause on greening all schools, health centres, small towns, urban centers and potential cities such as Jinja, Mbale, and Mbarara should be part of the new legislation. Trees planted either within the campuses, institutional and family compounds and along the roads (streets) do provide an excellent shed for relaxation, space for revision and seasonal fruits to boost the immunity of the groups at high risk of malnutrition especially school children.

Also, every event in life should be considered as an opportunity for tree planting. Such events may range from a typical ‘political demonstration or rally’, a workshop, a meeting, a birthday, a commemoration day, a baptism day, a confirmation day, a ‘wedding day’ to a day of last funeral rites of a close relative of friend. In fact, actual tree planting takes less than five minutes.

All political, civil and religious institutions should have afforestation as part of their cross-cutting issues. If these leaders worked toward recruiting their constituents to plant at least one tree at every important occasion held, the current tree cover would grow exponentially in next five years.
Most of the grassroots local council leaders are presently demobilized and dysfunctional and yet they could be awakened through afforestation initiatives. It is possible for Local Governments to facilitate the establishment of at least two tree nurseries per community or hamlet. This may be integrated with campaigns and competitions of tree planting along community roads and establishment of community and family owned forests. Off-course, awards may be provided to individuals, families and communities that exhibit outstanding performance. Besides, it is important to set aside a special day per month that is strictly observed by each Local Council in order to monitor, evaluate and learn from ongoing environmental efforts and draft plans for the subsequent period.

Almost more than three quarters of Uganda’s population is employed in the informal sector, and does not have access to Social Security Protection Services. Trees should be planted as part of the pension schemes. A privately owned forest is not only a viable source of retirement income but could substantially reduce the heavy social burden on the country.

It is worth noting that trees can be planted and harvested in either the short-term or the long-run. Most cash flow statements show that afforestation is a rewarding enterprise. Unfortunately, most awareness programs don’t employ business and entrepreneurship approaches. The National Forestry Authority (NFA) in partnership with other stakeholders could play a crucial role in providing useful information on suitable trees for each region, their commercial or economic and nutritional benefits.

Sustainable, systematic, expanded and well coordinated investments into the Forest Sector will bring enormous benefits to the young economy of Uganda including reversing likely adverse effects of the knocking deforestation, upholding the fast growing housing, eco-tourism and agro-tourism sectors, foreign exchange, carbon credits, and employment creation and lifting many struggling families above the poverty line. Uganda will definitely regain its lost status of the Pearl of Africa -the most irresistible destination in the world.

By Matthias Ngobi Miti,
Butembe Constituency,
matthiasmiti@yahoo.com

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Children need decision makers who put their wellbeing first


Dear Ugandan at Heart
Thank you for the photos posted which convey more information that words can. I was moved by the photo of the child you posted.

I am have been actively raising awareness of Nodding Syndrome. A syndrome describes an illness for which doctors only know the symptoms. For something to be defined a disease, they have to know how it is caused. Nodding Syndrome also affects children in very poor communities in South Sudan and Tanzania.

The context of nodding syndrome in northern Uganda is societal in the sense that it is a problem predominantly in children from 5 to 15 years old; the incidence, prevalence, morbidity and mortality in this age group suggest peri-domestic and societal factors coming into play. The children were vulnerable because they were still in developmental stage during which they experienced the atrocities and adversity in the Internally Displaced People’s camps (IDPs).

There is a very high level of infant mortality or death in the first year of life, mainly due to malaria, childhood pneumonia and diarrheal diseases. In the camps, children from 0-5 years were dying because of living under the poorest conditions where there is not enough food, pure water, or decent housing and sanitation, (Civil Society Organisation for Peace in Northern Uganda, 2006).

When food is very scarce, food security has an important impact, on the recovery of the children.
The question that is constantly being asked is what is the cause of this seizure-like episodes of head nodding, which mostly affects children between 5 and 15 years and why the seizures are often, triggered by food. The children shun food, because the seizure can be provoked when the child is eating; malnutrition sets in leading to physical stunting and slow learning. The stigma attached to nodding syndrome; arise because other children do not want to share rooms with the children who exhibit involuntary behaviours, activities and emotional state when they suffer bouts of fit. The sad thing is that these children isolated and tend to drop of school and sadly lose the will to live as shown by the child in the photo. Many get seizures, which take one to three hours to regain consciousness and deaths have been known to result accidents such as falling in water of fire.

Children need decision makers who put their well being ahead of selfish adult interest. That is clearly lacking in Uganda at the moment. Three treatment centres were opened unfortunately they are inadequately staffed; people who were interviewed were unable to take up post because of lack of money. Reading from recent posting the money which was destine to resource these services went walking.

Dr Caesar J Acaye
c.acaye@btinternet.com

Letter To MPs. BY Fr.Gaetano Batanyenda.


KITANGA CATHOLIC PARISH.
P.O BOX 03
MPARO –KABALE

DATE.16TH NOV 2012

ALL MEMBERS OF PARLIAMENT-KAMPALA-UGANDA
ALL CIVIL SOCIETY ORGANISATIONS-UGANDA
ALL RELIGIOUS LEADERS –UGANDA.

RE:DISHONESTY AMONG LEADERS:A STUMBLING BLOCKTO SOLVE UGANDA’S PERENNIAL POLITICAL PROBLEMS
In the Gospel of St. Mathew, without fear or favour to the powers that were existing at that time ,Jesus warned the crowds and his disciples against the hypocrisy and vanity of the scribes ( politicians and public civil servants )and the Pharisees (religious leaders) in the words :“The scribes and the Pharisees occupy the chair of Moses. You must therefore observe what they tell you, but donot be guided by what they do since they donot practice what they preach(say).”

Fellow leaders , Jesus was castigating the leaders that: It is not enough to recall principles ,laws, write manifestos, state intentions, programmes and policies, make heavenly promises, point to crying injustices and falsehoods and utter prophetic denunciations;these words will lack real weight unless they are accompanied for each individual by effective patriotic action. We must walk thetalk. Often times some of us leaders, either out of negative and primitive fear or being compromised, we have not walked the talk and our silence, indifferentism and fear is slowly but surely mortgaging our country. Whenever some of us gather courage and speak ,we soon or later contradict ourselves either because of sycophancy ,intimidation, bribe ,patronage and dishonesty .We must courageously overcome these sins if we have to save our pearl of Africa (Uganda).

Fellow leaders. On the eve of Uganda’s Independence Golden Jubilee AnniversaryCelebrations, President Museveni ,during the prayer service at Nambole Stadium, publicly repented for his sins and sins of other leaders both past and present. I do not know whether God listened to his prayers and if he did, whether he forgave him because things are becoming unbearable day after day. During the prayer service , he religiously cited a litanyof sins but forgot others , which are more mortal than those he enumerated, and these are: Greed for power, breach of contract, bribery ,expropriation ,primitive arrogance , impunity ,deception duplicity ,intimidation ,theft , inconsistency ,land grabbing, sycophancy , balkanization of Uganda into tribal districts, blackmail,bad governance, bad leadership,possessiveness ,fear to do good, indifferentism, divide and rule, institutionalizing an individual and individualizing an institution,inconsiderate,favouratism,insensibility ,double standards, patronage,insincerity,kleptomania,dishonesty,manipulation,nepotism,supresssion,torture,beackery,aggrandizement, pride,intolerence,extragavance ,bigotory,abusive language, despotism and others.

All the sins cited above ,plus those cited by the President , are morally, politically ,socially and spiritually deleterious and lethal to humanity and they are being committed in our presence just before our eyes. What have we done to counteract them? All these sins are manufactured by the devil and we are supposed to fight the devil and his agents. So by keeping quiet are we not conniving with the devil in destroying Uganda? Are we not the devil’s agents? Are we not colluding with the devil in oppressing the oppressed? Here I salute those MPS , Religious Leaders and CSOs who have courageously and patriotically refused and rejected all forms of intimidation,blackmail,and bribery and stood up steadfastly with the suffering and downtrodden.
These are the honest few who still have the courage and the spirit of patriotism, to tell the emperor that he is naked. These people are not the enemies of Uganda,NRM and indeed President Museveni as some powers are trying to portray them.I honestly believe that the worst enemies of Uganda,NRM and Museveni are those MPs ,Ministers ,Advisors and lamentably and egregiously some Religious Leaders ,who know the truth and see things going amiss, almost in all sectors of life, but fear to speak out because of either opportunitism,sycophancy,sectarianism or egomaniacs .These are the enemies of Uganda and humanity. They neither love Uganda nor believe in Uganda!

Among the sins cited above, I have chosen to comment on DISHONESTY because of the nasty and horrendeous saga, in the office of the Prime Minister Amama Mbabazi ,surrounding the PS Mr Pius Bigirimana.According to Concise Oxford Thesaurus Dictionary ,other words for DISHONESTY are:fraudulence ,corruption, cheating,chicanery,double dealing, deception ,duplicity,falsity,craft ,trickery,artifice,underhandedness,subterfuge, skulduggery and criminality. If any leader degenerates to the level of being DISHONESTY, it means thathis /her moral characterand integrity are seriously questionable and doubtful.

On 1st November ,2012 , Members of Parliament, under the good and able stewardship of Speaker Rabecca Kadaga,overwhelmingly voted to have Bigirimana kicked out over the scam that has since seen the country suffer aid cuts. It is my hope and prayer that this time our Mps will remain united and resolute in resisting all forms of intimidation,partisan and bribery ,be it at State House , Rwakitura or any where else, as it has been happening with some selfish and greedy MPs from the ruling Party. Other leaders like Religious and Civil Society Organizations must come out in the open cohesivelyand be countedto give encouragement and support to our MPs, and where necessary, criticize and lambaste them for the good of our Country.

On the scandal in the OPM ,nobody should be deceived that the unethical behavior in OPM, is with PS Mr Pius Bigirimana only. There are many and more powerful and influential Bigirimanas and these are the real problem of Uganda not only Bigirimana the PS.These powerful Bigirimanas are his god-father who are determined to defend him come what may and at any cost. In shielding Bigirimana, they are shielding themselves
In a similar manner we should be prepared ,as leaders ,to tenaciously stand together as compatriots and patriots to defend our poor and vulnerable people of Uganda especially those from the great North whose money was indecorously swindled. Our political leaders and their cohorts are very insensitive and callous .Mr. President and Rt. Hon.Amama Mbabazi.Why can’t Bigirimana be interdicted ?How about the former PS of Health Ms Mary Nannono? PS of Local Government Mr Kashaka and PSMinistry of Public Service Mr Lwanafa.Are these less Ugandan and less PS? By the way what happened to PS Kagodo of the IDs? Is he protecting and shielding some people ?

President Museveni is reported to have said that he cannot interdict Bigirimana because he is a whistle-blower and therefore a state witness. Who,among his advisors advised him that if Bigirimana is interdicted he ceases tobe astate witness? If he was a whistle-blower, as President Museveni wants us to believe,why did Bigirimana try to control attempts, therefore to interfere, by CID to interrogate him and other officers?Bigiriman’s stay in office is a well calculated move of hiding and concealing some vital information! Then for the Prime Minister,Amama Mbabazi, he is quoted to have stated that Bigirimana cannot be interdicted because thereis nothing in the Auditor General’s report that incriminates him. May be the PM has not read the AG’S report ;and if he read it then he was preoccupied with many things that he did not understand it; and if he understood it then he is a liar to say that in AG’s report there is nothing incriminating Bigirimana.I am happy to reproduce the exercepts of the AG report where Bigirimana is implicated and therefore has acase to answer.

“ Among other findings, the Auditor General report graphically demonstrates that Bigirimana is directly and personally responsible for the following offences.

• Without seeking clearance from the Ministry of Finance, and without any approved work plans, he personally approved payment of sh 15.5b out of the 20.1b which had been deposited on the Crisis Management Account. This was in contravention of his responsibility under section 14 of the Public Finance and Accountability Act (PFAA)(section 6.3.2page 22 of the Auditors report.)

• Vide his internal memo of May ,21,2012 to the Principle Accountant ,he authorized payment of advances totaling sh 34.6 b on private Accounts of OPM staff in contravention of sections 227,228 and 229 of Treasury Accounting Instruction. This includes amounts which should have been paid to beneficiaries like suppliers and service providers. The whole amount was still unaccounted for by the time of the audit.(Section 6.3.6 page 27 of the Audit Report.)

• He explicitly approved withdrawal of sh 1.4b in cash , of which 787m was withdrawn on Friday as if all the activities were meant to take place on weekends. The auditors found no cash book to show how the money was utilized. There was not even a single record accounting for the money and believe me ,all this money is lost. (Section 6.3.3 page 23-24 of the Audit Report)
• He authorized transfer/diversion of sh 3b purportedly to refund monies earlier borrowed to procure cattle boluses ,but there is no evidence ton prove that such a borrowing ever took place (section 6.6.6 Page 25 of the Audit Report)
• He approved the following dubious withdrawals(i.e. with no work plans, no cash books, no accountability)from the sh11.1b which was irregularly diverted from the Norwegian Support to PRDP Account for the PRDP North Account.
• Sh 8.1b for which auditors found no single accountability document.
• Sh 1.3b paid Farm Engineers ltd for no specified purpose and no records were found at the time of audit.
• Sh 776m to personal accounts (section 6.3.4.Page 25 of the Audit Report)
• He diverted sh6.5b from the Norwegian support to PRDP account ,to drafting of Disaster Management Policy on June 27,2011.How can drafting a policy cost billions? No consultant would take even sh 1b.and there is even no break down detailing how the money was utilized(Section6.3.5 .page 25-26 of the Audit Report)
• He approved payments of advances amounting to sh2.9b into the personal accounts of the two cashiers yet by the virtue of their roles Cashiers are not mandated to carry out field activities. And the money remains un accounted for ,mostly likely stolen (Section6.3.6.1,Page 27 of the Audit Report)

• He authorized payment of sh 6.8b to Caltex Ntinda but this firm was not procured in accordance with procurement regulations. No background check or evaluation was done .Records with the registrar of companies show that it is just a registered business name. Its location is unknown (a ghost probably).There is no record to show how money deposited was consumed.

• He approved another payment of sh576m ostensibly for fuel for only four days to the same firm on February 6.2012 without details to show which vehicles took how much fuel and for which activity .This is enough to fuel 48 trailers on a return journey to and from Karamonja.It translates into sh144m worth of fuel per day .But in any case no food was issued from the stores for transportation to any destination.
• The other Officers with whom he performed this transaction i.e principal accountant, the commissioner for disaster management and a resettlement officer are all on interdiction and facing trial, but PS is still scot free despite being the principle actor as an accounting officer. The auditors confirmed that OPM staff always withdrew such monies in a lumpsum as soon as it was deposited (retrieval by sender ) which is outright theft.(Section 6.3.10. Page 31-32 of the Audit Report).

• He approved payments to ghost suppliers and for supply of air. Unregistered firms whose addresses are unknown were paid as if they supplied relief, while some firms which supplied were over paid to the tune of sh 8.6(Section 6.3.11,Page33 of the Audit Report)

• He authorized payment of sh13.7b to Farm Engineering Ltd. As the auditors observe, some payments to this firm were duplicated as evidenced by several transactions with the same voucher narrations. There is no documentation to support the payments: no work progress reports. No contract register, no contract implementation plan, no project/contract manager was ever appointed as required by procurement regulations, no call off orders were ever issued yet the firm was engaged on a framework contract, and, there were no memoranda of Understanding between OPM and the districts. The firm was always paid without the districts certifying the work done. Much of the money was paid for no work.(Section 6.3.12,Page34_37 of the Audit report)

• He miserably failed in performing his statutory duty of ensuring that the ministry’s financial and accounting records were kept up to date and securely at all times as required under Section 420 of the Treasury Accounting Instructions. The former principal accountant took advantage of this failure to perpetuate his other fraudulent transactions. This would not have happened if the PS had played his roles competently.(Section 6.3.6, Page29 of the Audit Report).”(see New Vision of Tuesday,November 6,2012 by Derrick Odokorach)
Secondly, PM Amama Mbabazi is quoted tohave stated in a press statement, because of the pressure from the donors and MPs ,that the Government has decided to refund stolen funds to the Peace, Recovery and Development Project(PRDP) donoraccount. The money to be refunded is about 50 billions.

Fellow leaders, I think every one of us knows how social services in our Villages, Parishes, Dioceses and Constituencies are in a very sorry state!I I also believe that every one of us is sympathetic with the teachers, doctors and nurses, police officers and many others whose services are not appreciated. The response from the government to their misery is usually very repulsive and repudiatory.They are treated with primitive arrogance and impunity From which account does the government hope to get money to pay for the thieves, if it has failed to get money to pay teachers and medical workers , to provide better living conditions for our police officers and to provide social services to Ugandans ?In any case why should the government use the tax payers money to pay for the thieves when they are at large with their loot?

Hon. Members of Parliament ,your integrity and independence are at risk. This year you resolved to have the ministers mentioned in the oil scandal to step aside and your resolution was not honoured.Again youmade another resolution to have PS Kagoda interdicted over IDS cards but nothing has happened. Now thereis this saga of Bigirimana .We are watching and yet to see how far you can go to defend your integrity. On all resolutions ,you start well but it seems on the way some of you are injected with “kintu kidogo”- youknow better. The executive has studied you and it knows that when you are hard up financially ,you make noise and you are invited for the caucus meetings. What follows, you are silenced. This time let your No be No and your Yes be Yes.

Lastly ,the anti-corruption court acquitted the three Ministers namely Kuteesa,Nasasira and Rukutana of Chogmfunds. Now what next? Where is the money? Who stole the money? The onus is on the government to tell Ugandans who stole their money since ,the fact is that the money was stolen!

UNITED WE STAND AND DIVIDED WE FALL and UNITY IS STRENGTH
FOR GOD AND MY COUNTRY

Fr Gaetano Batanyenda.
batanyenda@gmail.com.
0703212388

‘We do not need “Divine intervention…” we just need parliament to make good laws or a referendum to trim the powers of the president’- Says Beti Kamya


Jinja Raliways also not functional anymore under M7

Jinja Raliways also not functional anymore under M7

I fear that parliament is sacrificing the tenets of democratic governance at the Altar of fighting corruption – yet corruption is just a consequence, NOT the cause of undemocratic governance.

Democratic governance entails (i) independence of the three arms of government (ii) free and fair elections (iii) a knowledgeable and informed electorate (iv) head of state is elected based on his / her manifesto (v) head of state is mandated to pick own cabinet that will best deliver manifesto (vi) parliament’s PRIMARY role is to make laws for peace, order, development and good governance (vii) judiciary administers laws (viii) citizens pay taxes to enable arms of Govt to function (ix) performance appraisal is done by voters through regular elections.

These principles of democratic governance are what the Constitution of Uganda should aim to deliver, but is it designed for the job?

Can the judiciary and parliament claim independence when the Chief Justice, judges and 20% of parliament are appointed by the President, while the rest struggle for his attention? Can there be fair elections and respect for human rights when electoral commissioners, army, police and prisons’ chiefs are appointed by the President? Who can stop the President taking liberties with the treasury when (s)he appoints the Minister of Finance, Commissioners of URA, Governor of Bank of Uganda and Secretary to the Treasury?

All senior public jobs are awarded by the president i.e. Vice President, Prime Minister, Ministers, Chief Justice, Judges, Ambassadors, army, police and prisons heads, permanent secretaries, chief administrative officers, RDCs, presidential advisors, heads of service commissions i.e. Judicial, Health, Education, Public, Electoral, Human Rights, Law Reform & Local Government Finance Commissions, Boards of Authorities & public corporations i.e. National Planning, National Environmental Management, Uganda Wildlife, Uganda Forestry, Uganda Investment, Uganda Coffee Development, Uganda Cotton, Uganda Electricity Regulatory, National Drugs, KCCA, Oil Regulatory, National Agricultural Research Organization, National Water and Sewerage Corporation, National Enterprise Corporation, Diary Development Corporation, Uganda National Roads’ Authority, Auditor General, Inspector General of Government, Attorney General, Solicitor General.

The president is also empowered by the constitution to create and fill public offices at will!

The president is the sole employer, boss of the armed forces, manages the National Treasury, has prerogative of mercy, and cannot be charged in Court.

What other ingredients does one need to create patronage and dictatorship?

Uganda’s constitution creates dictators. Dictators are arrogant, work for self preservation and believe in own invincibility, the outcome of which are human rights’ abuse, patronage, corruption and electoral malpractices. Like maggots and flies are consequences of rot emanating from a compost heap, these vices are consequences, NOT the cause of dictatorship! Until we deal with the constitution, dictatorship is here to stay, no matter who occupies State House.

Parliament should concentrate on its primary role of enacting a laws for the good governance of Uganda, instead of being the CID, police, Interpol, court, prison, civil society activists, celebs, the executive – demolishing illegal buildings, (dis)appointing ministers, receiving petitions, globe-trotting investigators, fighting over the budget and manifesto with the executive, who should have voters’ mandate to implement their manifesto!

80% of Uganda’s constitution heaps authority on the presidency, creating fertile ground for dictatorship. Instead of fighting a well-fed lion, Parliament should repeal provisions that promote dictatorship or undermine power separation and enact those that would protect institutions from undue influence!

Kenya achieved this through the 2010 referendum. Henceforth, the Chief Justice, Electoral Commissioners, Inspector General of Police, Central Bank Governor and all public officials except Cabinet, apply for jobs when advertised and submit to an open, competitive process.

UFA is pushing for a referendum to change Uganda’s system from the over-centralized, to the Kenya-like, power devolving system. The official launch of this program is Monday 17 December, 2012, in Lira Municipality. All are welcome.

Beti Olive Kamya-Turwomwe

President

Uganda Federal Alliance (UFA)

0783 438 201 / email: ufapresident@gmail.com

H.E the President Museveni’s speech at COMESA


Village life in Uganda

Village life in Uganda

Your Excellencies,

Heads of State and Government,

Heads of delegations,

Distinguished guests,

Ladies and Gentlemen.

I greet you and I welcome you to Uganda for this 16th COMESA Summit.

The greatest disadvantage Africa faced at independence, ever since 1957, when Ghana got independence, was political balkanization of this continent. The North American Continent has got only three countries ― USA, Canada and Mexico. The South American continent has got 15 countries including the Central American Isthmus and the three dependencies of Falkland Islands, French Guiana, South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands. The Australian continent has got one country, Australia. The Indian sub-continent has got only six countries which are: Pakistan, Bangladesh, India, Sri Lanka, Nepal and Bhutan. The huge Euro-Asian landmass, stretching from the border of Poland to the Pacific, until 1990, had only six countries which were: the Soviet Union, Afghanistan, China, Korea, Mongolia and Iran, if you excluded the Balkans and the Middle East. This was a land area of about 12 million square miles, bigger than the whole of Africa. When the Soviet Union broke up, there are now more countries in that zone of the globe. When, however, it comes to Africa, there are now 54 countries. None of them is more than one million square miles or 200 million people. About 36 of them, even today, have got a population less than 15 million. At independence, some had as few people as less than one million.

This balkanization posed the following problems to the newly independent Africa:

Small economies on account of, not only the purchasing power of the population because of under-development and small incomes, but also on account of the small numbers of consumers even in absolute terms. Without consumers and adequate purchasing power, enterprises (businesses) cannot thrive. Profitability of these enterprises is undermined. If the profitability is affected, then, few enterprises (e.g. Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs) will be attracted to these economies and few new ones will emerge. Without enough number of enterprises emerging or being attracted in an economy, jobs will not be created, goods and services will not be available (or will have to be imported), technology will not grow, the tax base will not expand and, therefore, funding social services (health, education, etc.) and infrastructure (roads, electricity, etc.) will be very difficult, etc. The best example is to compare China with East Africa. Since 1978 when China started its open-door policy, US$ 1.232 trillion have been attracted into that country from outside as FDI. Yet they are communists and do not have the fashion of multi-party democracy Africa has been engaged in ― they have a different system of governance which has served them well. East Africa, on the other hand, has only been able to attract US$ 19.1 billion in the same period in FDI. Yet we have been running free markets, running multi-party democracy, etc. China now is the 2nd biggest economy in the whole world, having overtaken the small but highly developed economies of UK, France, Germany and Japan. What were the stimulus factors for this phenomenal growth and transformation of the Chinese economy and society? The stimulus factors were the size of the Chinese population (1.3 billion people), the size of their land area (3 million square miles) and, of course, the dynamism as well as a rich culture of their society. In other words, it was the absence of political balkanization of the Chinese race ― both political and geographical.

Of course, political balkanization has got implications for defence and strategic security or otherwise of the concerned peoples. China has now joined USA, Russia, and India as a space science country. This enhances her capacity of strategic security. Africa is totally lacking in that area. The war technology gap that was pioneered in 1337, when Edward III of England first used gun-powder against Scots, between Europe on the one hand and Africa, Asia, the Americans as well as Austro-Asia on the other hand, has been widening ever more and more, particularly for the Africans that have remained stagnant.

Therefore, the foresight by the Lagos Action Plan, which pointed out the need to be organized in the building blocs for trade for different zones of Africa in order to tackle this balkanization, was correct. Integration is one of the major therapies for Africa which has been in decline since 1785 BC when the Hyksos first invaded and conquered Egypt, the African cradle of human civilization. Integration should have two dimensions – economic and, where possible, also political integration. In East Africa, we are aiming at both – political and economic integration.

The people of East Africa have, for decades, been yearning for an East African Federation that would deal with both political and economic integration. This is the ultimate goal of EAC. There are those who ask the question: “Why EAC and COMESA? This is the answer. EAC intends to travel further because the peoples are either similar or very compatible and are aiming at also the political integration, leading to the Federation of EA. COMESA, on the other hand, right from the beginning, aimed at economic integration because political integration at the continental level is quite unrealistic. Trade, however, is not only realistic, but necessary. This is why Uganda never joined SADC when it was formed by our fellow freedom fighters that had been active in the anti-colonial struggle. We only saw those two dimensions – the political and the economic. Since SADC did not make the political integration dimension explicit, we did not see the need to duplicate the trading arrangement mechanism. I am glad that now COMESA, EAC and SADC are engaged with one another under the tripartite efforts.

COMESA has done well and will even do better. As you heard, the trade volumes among COMESA members are of the magnitude of US$ 18.8 billion. This will grow if we could deal with infrastructure – the roads and the railways. I want to see a rail link with South Sudan, a rail link with Kisangani in Congo, a rail link with Gisenyi in Rwanda and the up-grading of the East African Railway system to a standard gauge. We need railway links with Ethiopia and Somalia from Kenya.

In the end, we need to conclude the agreement on the African Common market. In 2077, the population of Africa will be three billion. We should create that unified trading space for our grand children and great-grand children. A big market is not only good for giving our producers greater markets for their products (goods and services). It is also good to enable us to negotiate with others (USA, EU, China, Russia, India, South America, Japan, ASEAN, etc) for access to their markets.

The Ugandans (Banyankore) say: “Ija turye kumwe biri aine eki akurebireho” ― the one who invites you for a meal does so because he/she knows that you have got capacity to reciprocate. Indeed, from the Bible, in the Gospel of St. Luke 8:18, it says: “…For whoever has, more will be given to him; and whoever does not have, even what he thinks he has will be taken away from him…”

The one who has something will get more benefits. In this case, the stronger you are, the more you get. We are, therefore, on the right road.

I thank you very much.

23rd November 2012
Munyonyo Speke Resort.

Al Alshabaab Senior commander killed, 16 captured alive in Somalia


UGANDA CONTINGENT HQS
African Union Mission in Somalia

Mobile: 0699306044 Mogadishu Somali

November 23, 2012: Brig Ondoga Commends Somali security Forces

The Ugandan Contingent Commander and sector one commander in Somalia, Brig Michael Ondoga has commended the Somali security forces for excellence in their operations.

He made the comment on Friday morning while speaking to Ugandan contingent officers following a November 22, night raid by the Somali Army, Intelligence, and Police conducted at Sokohola on the home of overall Al shabaab commander for Gupta, Sokohola, and Huluwai areas, identified by residents as Guludupu. The Al Shabaab put up a fight and their commander was killed on spot as 16 terrorists were captured alive and 16 Sub-machineguns plus 04 pistols seized from them.

Brig Ondoga said:“The Somali National security forces are doing a commendable job in the pacification process of Somalia. As AMISOM, we are committed in giving them support in restoring calm in Somalia. We congratulate them in this successful operation which will bring more peace in Mogadishu.”

Brig Ondoga added that this was a manifestation of the ever improving capability of the Somali Forces, adding that he is confident that one day, the Somali themselves will be able to take full charge of their own security.

This incident comes three days after Ugandan and Somali Forces captured from Sokohola 11 high explosive bombs meant for terrorism. The Thursday night operation now adds to over 30 explosives, 16 submachine guns and 14 pistols captured from Sokohola by AU and Somali forces in two months. Sokohola, a Mogadishu suburb has been a concentration of Al Shabaab cells terrorizing civilians around Mogadishu town.

AMISOM is among others mandated by the UN security council to monitor the security situation in areas of operation and to provide technical assistance to stabilization efforts including helping to build capabilities of the Somali Security forces who will form the core of a rejuvenated Somali security Forces.

Remember: Eliminating political opponents has dire consequences


Those of us opposed to the re-emergence of oppressive Tutsi hegemony and creation of Tutsi Empire in the Great Lakes region are or our family members are being threatened with elimination. Those who are attempting assassinations need to remember that there are consequences which could be immediate or occur later. Here are some examples of what happened to those who eliminated their political opponents.

1. Execution of Lenin brother. It was perhaps the loss of his brother that forced Lenin to devote the balance of his life to settle scores with the Romanov ruling family. In 1917 the Russian Revolution swept the Romanov out of power ending a three hundred year dynasty and the elimination of the entire family of Nicholas II the last Romanov Czar (king).

2. Assassination of Deng’s brother and maiming his son. Deng Xiaoping developed ideological differences with Mao especially during the Cultural Revolution. He was accused of abandoning socialism in favor of capitalism. In the struggle that ensued, Deng lost his brother and his son was thrown out of a window from the fourth floor of a university building and sustained permanent injuries. Deng himself was humiliated in public, stripped of his titles and exiled to remote areas where he worked under awful conditions. When Mao died, Deng found his way back into the leadership of China. Members of the Gang of Four including Mao’s widow who had humiliated him got arrested for criminal activities, were tried and received severe punishments. It is reported that Mao’s widow could not endure the pain and took her own life.

3. Assassination of Benigno Aquino at Manila Airport. A former senator, Aquino was a strong opponent of Ferdinand Marcos, then president of the Philippines. On returning from exile, Aquino was gunned down at Manila International Airport. Marcos had hoped that with Aquino out of the way for good, he would rule happily ever after. But that was perhaps the biggest mistake of his life. Aquino’s death sparked a People Power Revolution demanding Marcos to go. In panic, he organized a ‘snap election’ hoping to disorient his opponents and win re-election. When he realized he couldn’t win, he had the election stolen and was declared the winner. That added fuel to the raging fire. The Minister of Defense and Deputy Chief of Staff abandoned Marcos and joined the Revolution. Fearing that Marcos troops would finish them, they appealed to the Archbishop of Manila, Cardinal Jaime Sin to help. He concurred and within hours mobilized 2 million demonstrators that formed a human barricade around the place where the minister and deputy chief of staff were located. Marcos troops couldn’t do much and with advice from a friendly country, Marcos conceded defeat and fled the country. Aquino’s widow, Cory Aquino, was sworn in as the next president.

The three examples have sufficiently demonstrated that elimination of political opponents or their family members or relatives and friends has dire consequences. Therefore those in Uganda and other parts of the Great Lakes region bent on eliminating opponents need to think again.

Let us begin a new chapter and playing politics by the rule. Let us compete by demonstrating who we are, our history and family background, what we have done in public and/or private life and what we plan to do for present and future generations.

I have declared interest in Uganda politics, circulated my profile and articulated my policies for Uganda. Let other aspiring candidates do the same so that the people of Uganda have all the data to make informed choices. Eliminating opponents should be ruled out as a means of earning a public office.

ERIC KASHAMBUZI

Struggle to control riches of DRC and suffering of Gt. Lakes people


The people of DRC especially those in the east need more of our prayers at this hour of intense human suffering. The three K leaders (Kaguta, Kagame and Kabila) with military background and their domestic and foreign backers need to come to their senses and end the suffering of the people. The United Nations too needs to move faster and end the war before it loses its credibility as an institution that was created in 1945 to maintain or restore peace and security in all parts of the world.

The fall of Goma town may sharpen the appetite of victors to want to capture the rest of DRC, Angola, Namibia, Congo and Gabon and then Kenya and Tanzania. Mark my words: if concerted and collective action is not taken that is what will happen. Rwanda and Uganda, the two countries alleged to be causing this instability are too poor to be acting alone. So those supporting them should stop.

The suffering of DRC and neighboring countries including Uganda goes back to the Berlin conference of 1884/85 which handed DRC to the king of Belgium as his private estate and the end of WWI which handed over Burundi and Rwanda to Belgium. The exploitation of Congo resources by the Belgian king and the human cost involved alarmed the international community and transferred control of Congo to the Belgian government but human suffering continued with many millions losing their lives.

The Belgian authoritarian regime and economic hardship pushed Barundi and Banyarwanda into neighboring countries in search of work. Uganda has been receiving workers from Burundi and Rwanda since the 1920s. Since the 1959 Social Revolution in Rwanda and chaotic Congolese independence in 1960, Uganda has been home to so many refugees with considerable demographic impact on numbers and composition.

The Cold War confrontation between capitalist and communist forces and the geopolitical conflict between Anglophone and Francophone countries have caused too much suffering in the Great Lakes region. The death of Lumumba and the subsequent civil war resulted in too much instability that affected neighboring countries including Uganda that degenerated into serious conflicts within the government, arrest and detention of cabinet members and contributed to the 1966/67 political and constitutional crisis.

The coming to power of Museveni and Kagame that have terrorized the region is connected with control of the resources of DRC. Keith Harmon Snow has reported that:

“War for the control of the Democratic Republic of Congo – what should be the richest country in the world – began in Uganda in the 1980s, when now Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni shot his way to power…

“Paul Kagame, now president of Rwanda served as Museveni’s Director of Military Intelligence. Kagame …. [and] the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) … invaded Rwanda. The RPF destabilized and then secured Rwanda. This coup d’etat is today misunderstood as the ‘Rwanda Genocide’….

“In 1996, Paul Kagame and Yoweri Museveni … launched their covert war against Zaire’s Mobutu Sese Seko …. A decade later, there are 6 or 7 million dead, at the very least, and the war in Congo (Zaire) continues” (Peter Phillips 2006).

While Kagame and Museveni are being used in the scramble to control the resources of DRC, they are also using western countries and corporations to implement their Tutsi Empire project.

ERIC KASHAMBUZI

{UAH} To be black, to be African


By SABELLA ABIDDE

Since 1619 at least, Americans of sub-Saharan African ancestry have had different racial classifications. The first was “negars.” Other classifications have included African, Afro-American, Black, and Black American. According to Collier-Thomas and Turner, in “Race, Class and Colour: The African American Discourse on Identity,” published in 1994, “From the 1830s to the middle of the 1890s, Coloured American and the more commonly used derivation Coloured were the most popular terms. At the beginning of the twentieth century, Negro gained considerable support as a generic term, becoming by 1920 the most commonly used expression of race. Increasing dissatisfaction with the term, Negro, most noted in the late 1930s culminated with the Black Power movement of the 1960s.”

But by 1988, all these changed when Rev. Jesse Jackson reclassified the group: “To be called African-American has cultural integrity. It puts us in our proper historical context. Every ethnic group in this country has a reference to some land base, some historical cultural base. African-Americans have hit that level of cultural maturity. There are Armenian-Americans and Jewish-Americans and Arab-Americans and Italian-Americans; and with a degree of accepted and reasonable pride, they connect their heritage to their mother country and where they are now.” In the years since, the majority of Black Americans have embraced this categorisation; while many others have rejected it: they want to be known simply as American, or Black.

The most common argument many who reject the African-American label have made is that they do not have any kind of physical or mental affinity with the continent. For such individuals, slavery was a historical fact – a fact they nonetheless do not want to identify with. The fact that sub-Saharan Africa is their ancestral home is a non-issue. America and being American is all that matter. Perhaps, it is this line of thinking and attitude and expression that prevent many Blacks — outside of the African continent – from identifying with the Pan-African ideal and movement. In one’s everyday life, it is not uncommon to meet or hear of Blacks who, either out of ignorance, sour experience, or indifference, do not want to associate with the continent and or its people. Africa is an afterthought for many of them.

It should be noted that Black Americans are not the only ones with marked indifference and distance to the continent. Many Blacks from the Caribbean Islands, Asia, Latin America, and Europe, also feel and behave this way. Perhaps, the saddest part of this narrative is the fact that many Africans – especially Nigerians – who came to the US as toddlers or as teenagers, also tend to deny their African heritage. Many have gone on to anglicise their African names. It is also not uncommon to find those, whose parents and grandparents are Nigerians, say “my parents are Nigerians, but I am an American.” It is as if to be a Nigerian is a sin. To prefer the Black or American classification is one thing; but to deny one’s heritage is quite another. One rarely finds Americans of Asian, Latin America, or European origins deny their blood line.

Why do many Blacks, across the world, shy away from Africa and its people? Why do many non-Blacks across the world have contempt for the continent and its varied people? And why do many White Americans not think highly of Black Americans or blacks from other parts of the world who call America home? The answers are not as simple as one might think. And in fact, it may require a broader treatise to convincingly answer these questions. In general, however, one could posit that 500 years of slavery and 100 years of colonialism remind many of the weakness and impotency of the continent. After all these years, many have yet to overcome the residual effects of these inhumanities. And many more have not forgotten the agony and its misery. Why visit or revisit a place that caused so much pain?

In the last 50 years, at least, there has been significant improvement in race relations and racial equality in the US. Even so, America still has a long way to go (just as Europe has a million miles to travel in terms of racial equality and its goal of multiracialism). To be Black in the US is to be thought of as having a low IQ; of not capable of complex tasks; and of needing constant direction and supervision. In many cases, to be African is to be patronised and looked at with pity. It is as if the non-Blacks feel sorry for you; as if to be black is to be less human. Although one must admit that not all Whites, Asians and Hispanics are guilty of such disdainful attitude, still, the aforesaid mind-set is routine. At almost 15 per cent of the 309 million people in the US, Blacks are at the lower rung of every positive ladder.

At home and abroad, Africans are hired hands. In some African countries, the Indians and the Lebanese run the economy. The Lebanese especially are in charge of some of the most sensitive sectors of the economy. They hire and fire. In other African countries, the French and the Americans are in charge and they also hire and fire. The Chinese are beginning to make an inroad. It is also a fact that in many African countries, the elected or imposed presidents can’t make important decisions without seeking permission from Paris, Washington DC, or London. And lastly, Africans themselves do not make the continent attractive.

Images from Africa can be ghastly and disheartening. The images one see is of a continent and a people who are incapable of governing themselves, incapable of self-sustenance, and incapable of providing the most basic of all human needs. When the western media speak of war and excesses, they mostly speak of Africa. When they speak of dastardly acts, they mostly speak of Africa. And since 1980, there have been some 28 intra and interstate wars. There seems to be no end in sight to the rubbish that pervades the continent. But really, this needs not be our destiny; it need not be our collective fate.

http://economicconfidential.net/new/features/1144-to-be-black-to-be-african

Statement by H.E. Yoweri Kaguta Museveni President of the Republic of Uganda to The meeting with the Development Partners



19th November 2012

Greetings to all of you, Excellencies.

You cannot talk, seriously or credibly about the fight against criminality and corruption in Uganda in the last 50 years and the period before without talking about the vanguard role of the NRM in that fight.

Until 26 years ago, stealing Government funds was the least of Uganda’s problems. The main problems were: extra-judicial killings (that resulted into the death of 800,000 Ugandans between 1966 and 1986); looting of property of the population by the soldiers; raping of women; brutalizing of the population through beatings by the soldiers; uprooting of whole communities by the soldiers, like Idi Amin did with the Indian community, or like the colonial system did with the Banyoro, Baruuli, Banyala and others; the poaching of animals by Government soldiers in the National Parks; the grabbing of private and communal lands by those in power; and, of course, the stealing of Government funds. The NRM, which started as a student Movement in the 1960s, was the vanguard and pioneer of the fight against all this criminality and corruption since, at least, 1965 todate.

We started by defending the land of the peasants between 1966 and 1970 ― at least, in some parts of the country. Who were the agents of criminality, corruption and extortion? It was the State ― both the Colonial and the post-Colonial State. During the colonial times, for instance, the system of mailo was created where 8,000 square miles was taken away from the indigenous owners and was given to 1,000 collaborator chiefs, each one getting 8 sq. miles. When this grand theft almost caused an uprising in 1924, the Governor, Mitchell, appointed a Commission of Enquiry, which resulted in some reforms of 1928. However, the problem was not fully eliminated. We are still grappling with it. We shall definitely solve it.

Apart from the grabbing of land, extra-judicial killings were massively used, especially between 1966 and 1986, as already pointed out. There are 37 mass graves in the Luwero Triangle, preserved to capture this criminality. Your Excellencies could go there and visit some of them. Therefore, the main task of the revolutionaries was to destroy the rump of the colonial State ― the colonial Army, headed by the likes of Idi Amin and to build a people’s Army. It is this intervention that made Uganda to resurrect and chart a new course. Many people have been praising the conduct of the UPDF in Somalia. That is a consequence of that Revolution ― destroying the colonial Army and replacing it with a people’s Army as part of reforming the colonial State. Incidentally, this was not unique to Uganda. Throughout the whole of Africa, this was the problem. The terrible civil war in Nigeria, Mobutu in Congo, Siad Barre in Somalia, Bokassa in Central Africa, Eyadema in Togo, the recent problems of Ivory Coast, the genocides in Rwanda and Burundi can all, in one way or another, be traced to the colonial State and its Armies. Some go a bit further to link up with the African feudal systems of the pre-colonial times as exploited by colonialism.

Therefore, our revolution was both anti-colonial and anti-feudal. The most dangerous element of the Colonial State was the Colonial Army and its post-colonial mutants ― Uganda Army (UA), Uganda National Liberation Army (UNLA), etc. This Army was sectarian, illiterate, unpatriotic, etc. Our Revolution, on the other hand, was based on four principles:
(i) Patriotism;
(ii) Pan-Africanism;
(iii) Socio-economic transformation; and
(iv) Democracy

By destroying the colonial Army and replacing it with the Revolutionary Army, we, immediately, cured the following criminalities:
1. Extra-judicial killings;
2. Raping of women;
3. Looting of people’s property;
4. Brutalizing of people and rudeness to them;
5. Poaching of animals from the National Parks; and
6. Grabbing people’s land; etc.

That is how Uganda resurrected and started the recovery process, which has been witnessed in recent years (the last 26 years).

The colonial Army, however, was not the only element in the colonial State. There were other elements:
(i) The civil service;
(ii) The Police;
(iii) The Judiciary;
(iv) The Professional services (medical, veterinary,
teaching), etc.

It was actually a bit easier to reform the Army. What that needed was a correct ideological-philosophical outlook. As already said, our outlook is: patriotism, pan-Africanism, socio-economic transformation (modernization) and democracy. To these, or even as a consequence of patriotism, if you add heroism and courage, given the comparatively Uganda’s good educational standards even during the colonial times, it was easy to build a good pro-people Army.

All this was also assisted by the solid martial culture of the people of Uganda the decadent feudal system that tended to smoother the qualities of our people notwithstanding. Why? A recruit course takes six months to nine months, an officer – cadet’s course takes twelve months and a Non Commissioned Officer’s (NCO) course takes four months. This is based on assumption that you have people of the right educational level, age-bracket and health. The ideological aspects can be imparted by the leadership through teaching and by example. This can quickly get you people to lead platoons and with accelerated training, you will get people to lead companies, etc. Anybody with a University degree in general studies or A-level education can be turned into a good soldier, NCO or officer. Specialists for Air-force, engineering and other specialties need science education. Fortunately, these are needed in smaller numbers.

However, with Administration (Accounting officers), professional services (doctors, lawyers, veterinary), Judiciary, etc., you need longer periods of preparation. Some of these courses need science education or mathematics, which are subjects that are not as popular as the humanities. Many of them (the people involved), besides, had a careerist attitude, different from us the revolutionaries whose approach was a revolutionary one ― working, selflessly, without caring about remuneration, never claiming overtime allowances, staying in grass thatched huts instead of clamouring for good housing (just as we did in the bush), etc.

Then, there was also the politics. We could not have massively disbanded the civil service as we did with the Army without alienating the public. At that time, the civil service was not as unpopular as the army. The army’s criminality was much clearer to the masses and our destroying it has given us political capital whose account is not yet overdrawn ― 26 years after. In any case, we did not have others to replace them at that time. We, therefore, decided to tackle the problem piece-meal, quite early on.

In addition to the army, we decided to reform Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) ― the former East African Customs Department plus other tax departments. These departments were very corrupt. In 1986, these corrupt tax bodies, were only collecting 4.23% of GDP as tax for the Government. The rest, they were collecting for themselves. We abolished these departments, created URA, which was manned by the people we got through integrity hunting before professional training. What did this mean? Take Allen Kagina, for instance, the present Commissioner-General (CG) of URA. She was a lecturer in Psychology at Makerere University. In fact, Allen Kagina protested that she did not know anything about tax collection. I told her that somebody would teach her because tax collection was not space science. What was lacking in those tax bodies was integrity and uprightness. By recruiting a new cadreship into the tax bodies, collection rose from 4% of GDP to the present 12.65% of GPD. It has stagnated at that level because of the subsistence nature of the economy but, possibly, also, the lack of a correct personal identification system which will be cured by the electronic identity card.

Then, we turned to the Police, which has been slowly overhauled. This is how the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) is now able to play an active role in the present anti-fraud campaign. I had to bring in two Generals from the Revolutionary Army ― Katumba Wamala and Kale Kaihura ─ to shake up this centre of criminality that was ironically supposed to fight criminality.

Recently, we deployed Jennifer Musisi in the rotten Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA). She is busy sweeping Aegean stables of Kampala ─ corruption, land grabbing, lack of planning, garbage, pot-holes, mud, dust, flooding, flies, etc. In the short time she has been in that office, you can see what impact she has created in spite of the opposition by the corrupt political class and bureaucrats.

Recently, there have been quite a few politically motivated red-herrings, trying to give the impression that the problem of corruption in Uganda is because of lack of “political will” to fight that corruption. Who? Me, Yoweri Museveni, lacking “political will” to fight corruption and criminality when I am stronger now than I was in 1971, when, together with my colleagues, we took the regime of Idi Amin head on, or when in 1981, with 27 guns, we attacked Kabamba? Those who peddle those falsehoods should be treated with the contempt they deserve.

As soon as we had the opportunity, we put all the necessary laws in place ― leadership code, the anti-corruption laws, etc. We also put new institutions in place such as the Inspector General of Government (IGG), etc., in addition to the old ones such as CID, Director of Public Prosecution (DPP), etc. The problem has been the manning of these institutions. As all wars go, the enemy tries to infiltrate our ranks depending on the leadership that may be in place in a given institution. The IGG office, for instance, seems to have been infiltrated by questionable characters. The new IGG seems to be of the right temperament and integrity. She will mop up the infiltrators. Those who have been pushing the red-herring of lack of “political will” have been ignoring Article 174 of the Constitution, the Public Service Act of 2008 and section 188 of Local Government Act, all of which give power over money, contracts and personnel to the civil servants, not to politicians. In fact, there is no area of Government where the politicians can misuse money, make wrong procurement contracts, etc., without the permission of the civil servants (the Accounting officer). Where it happens, it is easy to detect. Therefore, as I have pointed out before, the warriors in the anti-corruption war are: the Permanent Secretary (PS) in the ministry, the Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) in a district, the Town Clerk in a City or Municipality and the Gombolola chief in a sub-county. All the others are mere accessories to the crime. They are the ones to supervise the procurement officers, the accountants, etc., below them.

Recently, we had a break through in this war. The whistle blowers in the ministry of Public Service exposed the huge theft of the pension funds. The CID moved in and they are doing a commendable job. Then, the Permanent Secretary of the Office of the Prime Minister became a whistle-blower in the case of the accountant Kazinda. This is what involved money from Development Partners. We are going to methodically unearth all those involved. I suspended the Permanent Secretary of the ministry of Public Service and I will suspend anybody else once I am satisfied that they are involved.

The suspected thieves are very cunning. One of their techniques seems to be blackmail whereby they intimidate whistle-blowers with framing them up or trying to get political patronage. I can assure you none of those will work. I am the elected leader of Uganda for four consecutive terms apart from being the historical leader of the Ugandan Revolution. Anybody who associates himself or herself with these suspected thieves and tries to shield them will come to ruin as did all the enemies of our people. Our points-men in this war are the auditors, officers from CID officers and other security services. I, sometimes, directly supervise them. We shall not be diverted by any smoke-screen. Each issue will be dealt with according to the facts.
As for the Development Partners, kindly inform your home constituencies that you are dealing with capable people who fought the dictatorship of Idi Amin; fought the dictatorship of UPC; defended Uganda from Sudanese – sponsored terrorism; destroyed the colonial Army that was killing Ugandans; stopped the multiple crimes of that Army against the people of Uganda; enabled the Ugandan economy to recover; contributed to regional peace, etc. The recent revelations have been made by people sympathetic to the Revolution. They are the whistle-blowers. We have the capacity to defeat these thieves as we defeated all the other enemies of Uganda.

These accountants have for long been rumoured to be the core of corruption in the Public Service. Fortunately, given the large number of educated people Uganda now has, it will not be a big problem to get rid of this crop of parasites. Their activities even impact negatively on the operations of the foreign exchange. By getting this free money of the Government, they are able to buy large amount of dollars for externalization, thereby, causing the artificial depreciation of the Uganda shilling.

The fight against these thieves is going on well. Give me your support and, please, remember the Banyankore proverb: “Watooza n’ababwibire”. The rich African dialects are very precise and not easy to interpret. It refers to people stealing one’s millet in the night from a granary. The following morning, having discovered the theft, you make the alarm. Among those who come to help track the stolen millet are the very thieves that stole the millet at night. They will do everything possible to divert you from the track that the thieves took so that you do not find the millet and the thieves. All that is said in two words as shown above.

I thank you.


Yoweri Kaguta Museveni
PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF UGANDA
Entebbe State House

19th November 2012

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