Category Business

THE #‎GREECECRISIS‬ WAS NOT GREEK!


“Thank you for banking with us, based on your account, you qualify for a loan of xxx amount. I will also give you a very good interest rate” the caller said.

You may have received such calls from the banks. I remember asking one of them what I would do with the loans and he said I could renovate my house, furnish the house or start a business. “Do you have a business idea I could start with?” Of course he had none! If one is not careful, one could get into a #GreeceCrisis. Let us learn Greek, the lessons that is:

DO NOT BORROW WHAT YOU CANNOT REPAY!
For the salary earners, all your loans should not be more than 50% of your take home. Before you take on a loan, you can first calculate how much the monthly instalments are going to be. Make use of the inbuilt loan amortization schedule in excel. This also helps you to create various scenarios using different interest rates and repayment periods until you come up with a manageable scenario

DO NOT GET YOURSELF INTO A DEBT TRAP!
Many borrowers take loans to repay existing loans. This ends up into a vicious cycle. Most of the debts acquired are sometimes not necessary. Bad debts are those acquired for consumption purposes, good debt are those acquired for facilitating generation of more income.

DO NOT BORROW AGAINST FUTURE EXPECTED INCOME!
The future income may not materialize as expected. If you borrow expecting a salary raise of say 20% and you get 5% or none what happens? Remember what happened to the Safaricom IPO and those who borrowed to buy the shares?

TRACK ALL YOUR LIABILITIES!
Even if you do not like to keep records (the only record we are not to keep is a record of wrongs) you should have a place where you rack all your liabilities (the things you owe). Otherwise how will you know how to prioritize the various obligations? If you list all your creditors and they many, why not consider consolidating them to only a couple of them that you can easily track and monitor?

LIVE WITHIN YOUR MEANS!
Am yet to hear someone who died of lack of luxury. If luxury is not within your means, accept and be happy to meet your basic needs. Living within your means requires simple disciplines like having and maintaining a budget. If you put together a budget and it is a deficit one (i.e. expenses exceed income), at that point you make the tough choices of cutting of some expenses from your budget or looking for ways to increase your income (loan is not income). But if you live on a deficit status day in day out you are headed for a #GreekCrisis.

The #GreeceCrisis was largely due to unsustainable debt as result of consistently operating on a budget deficit. This is not Greek to anyone, it is that simple! The above lessons are both for the individual and the businesses alike.

SO TAXES WE MUST PAY, BUT HOW MUCH?


First of all, why pay taxes? ‘This is why you pay taxes, for the authorities are God’s servants, who give their full time to governing. Give to everyone what you owe them: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor then honor’. Romans (13:6-7)

Uganda Revenue Authority and other tax collecting bodies are therefore established to fulfill the mandate of collecting as much tax as possible. Imagine a world where the citizen are all tax compliant and the government puts all the taxes to good use…..Utopia 🙂

The more you earn as an individual the more taxes you pay, hence PAYE (Pay As You Earn). The higher the annual gross turnover of a small business, the higher the annual tax payable. The more profits a medium enterprise makes, the more income tax you pay. In other words the only way to avoid tax at the moment is to ensure your monthly earning is less than Ugx235,000 and your annual business turnover is less than Ugx 10,000,000. Below these amounts the tax payable is 0%

So taxes we must pay but how much?

Depending on whether you see the glass as half-full or half-empty, the Uganda budget for 2015/2016 gave a section of small business owners a reason to celebrate. The increasing of the VAT registration threshold was a welcome to many SMEs. It brought with it amendments of The Value Added Tax (VAT) and The Income Tax Act (ITA). This was in line with Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) aim of reducing the administrative burden of small businesses.‪

The VAT amendment bill proposed to increase the annual turnover threshold for VAT registration from Ush 50 million to 150 million. This meant that a broader range of small businesses would be excluded from the requirement to register for VAT. A tax payer below the threshold would still be entitled to apply for (or retain) VAT registration. A registered taxpayer falling below the new threshold may apply for their registration to be cancelled.

The income tax amendment bill proposed to increase the threshold for presumptive tax from Ush 50 million to 150 million, while at the same time halving the base tax rate from 3% to 1.5%. This meant that SME taxpayers with annual turnover between Ush 50 and 150 million would be entitled to calculate their annual income tax liability based on a flat rate of 1.5% applied to their gross turnover. The tax amount may be a lesser lump sum according to where the turnover falls within the four prescribed brackets.

For tax payers with a gross turnover of less than Ush 50 million, specific lump sum tax amount would apply (ranging from Ush100,000 to 500,000) depending on the nature of the business and location. For instance those earning between Ush35 million to Ush50 million per annum, would pay Ush500,000 per year, while those with less than Ush10 million turnover would pay Ush250,000.

The bill made it mandatory for every local authority, government institution or regulatory body to require a TIN from any person applying for a license or any form of authorization necessary for conducting business in Uganda. The URA partnership with Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) and the Uganda Registration Services Bureau (URSB) has already registered many new taxpayers since its inception. This partnership is among many changes aimed at ensuring more people shoulder the tax burden instead of the current few.

Excerpts from PWC’s Tax watch, Tax Amendment Bills – 2015

There are no strict or written regulations against buying land but the following clues can help


By Kizito Bashir Juma

There are no strict or written regulations against buying land but the following clues can help:
1. Determine the intended use of the land. This will guide you on the location and size of land you need. Do you intend to erect rentals?who are your intended market? Could they own cars or need to use taxis? What’s the land proximity to public means? Do you intend to have it as your own home?office?farming?etc

2. Due Diligence
Carry out as much research about the land and it’s owners as possible. I understand that it’s a good deal so u have to be fast. But then your earned money shouldn’t be wasted. Strike a balance.
a)Carry out a legal search if the land is titled land. What kind of title is it? A freehold,customary, leasehold or mailo title? Check to see the lease terms and remaining duration of the lease if it’s a leasehold. Check to see if terms permit your intended use?Check with issuing lesor if the seller hasn’t any outstanding balances on ground rent, etc Find out the registered proprietor of the land.
b)Request a land surveyor to open boundaries of this land. Insist with the landlord that this happens. Quite often quoted sizes on land titles don’t tally with the actual physical size. Further, the land could have poor or no gazetted access, or has a running trench, drain, overhead power lines, could be sitting on a sewer, could have an access road running through it, could be part of already gazetted land for road works, a large chunk could be part of an existing road or public utility like well, etc The boundary opening will guide you further on if the land has any existing squatters or boundary conflict with neighbours.
c) Insist on seeing the real registered proprietor or their legal attorneys. These should have powers of attorneys. Don’t mind asking to look at their ID. It’s your money you know!!!!! Try to relate the details on ID with the legal search results.
d)Try as much as possible to visit the land and inspect it fully before you part with your money. Do you see any house, garden,etc Ask those questions. Quite often people buy and inspect later-what a waste!!!
e)Again if it’s titled land, is it family land? Does it have an ancestral, or matrimonial home on it, does the seller appear to be deriving economic sustainance from it(eg does intending seller til it for home consumption?), please ensure that you get the necessary consents (spousal, children,etc) The law demands so!
f) Insist on having a look at the duplicate (or what most people refer to as original land title certificate). See that there’s a seal, and some features of a genuine land title. A seasoned surveyor or lawyer will guide you on verifying signatures on it since most of these people are known to them.
g)Are you purchasing part of the land or the whole? If it’s part of it, negotiate to pay in installments, as preceded by survey and title progress. The seller should be able to sign a mutation form,part with a copy of their ID, 3 passport photos and copy of land title. This will enable a surveyor execute the first part of titling your land. After that stage, the owner should be able to part with the original title, and transfer forms.
h) check with the surveyor to see that the size of land you want to purchase is admissible for titling. Planning requirements can fail your ambitions. Eg in KCCA scope, the minimum plot requirement is an equivalent of 100′ by 65′ and not your usual 100′ by 50
I)Move about and talk to neighbors and LCs for any clues or leads about this land. Note: It shouldn’t be those introduced to you but those you have inquired and been directed to.

3. If it’s not titled land, Kibanja, please find out the registered proprietor of that land. Is it the Kabaka, Church, Mosque,etc You need their consent to purchase this land or your purchase will be at risk. More diligence here is required to vet ownership.

Know The Vendor. Satisfy yourself that the seller is the legitimate owner of the land and that they have the power to sell. One can be known to own such land but without the power to sell it. Administrators may not necessarily have the authority to sell. So ask such questions from neighbors and local authorities to get deserving answers.

The number of years I have been in this field i have realised that there is a tendency for vendors to present photocopies to buyers for them to check with the land offices whether the land is free of incumbrances.

Now here lies a time Bomb!. Of course the buyer’s lawyer or himself will go to the land office and check say Plot 30 block 789 and the information will in most cases march with the photocopy details and the land may be free of any claims. Then at the time of buying you are presented with a fake title and on reaching the land office for transfer of the same, you are told that the presented title is forged !!!! So as a matter of precaution my friends always seek to have a look at the original Title and if possible present the same at the land office for verification otherwise a simple search statement may not be enough to guarantee genuineness

The following are businesses to start with Ush 30,000 to Ush 150,000 in Uganda


The following are businesses to start with *Ush 30,000 to Ush 150,000* in Uganda
1. Selling Vegetables
2. Hawking anything used by human beings.
3. Selling Mivumba clothes
4. Car wash business in small towns
5. Shoe shining business
6. Photography
7. Rearing local breed chicken
8. Mobile manicure bodycure
9. Chapati/pancakes
10.Roasted ground nuts/soya/popcorn/simsim

Business to start with *Ush 300,000-Ush 3,000,000*
1. Kinyozi/Barber shop
2. Salon
3. Grocery
4. Boutique in small towns
5. Selling women handbags
6. Selling women clothes/children clothes/men shirts
7. Farming tomatoes, onions, pineapple, watermelon, maize and beans.
8. Photocopy, scanning and printing business
9. Investing in shares and bonds
10. Processing all agricultural products into soft drinks/honey/meat products/fish/milk

Business to start with *Ush 5,000,000-Ush15,000,000*
1. Fast Food Restaurant
2. A small pub
3. Hotel of 1 star
4. Classic Barber Shop
5. Salon/dry cleaning services in posh estates
6. General shop or groceries
7. Laundry contract business
8. Classic Car Wash
9. Starting Mobile money Shop
10. Starting banking agency business
11. Starting motor cycle spare parts business
12. Starting a cosmetics shop
13. Starting Audit firm
14.Starting a consulting firm

Business to start with *Ugx 15 million to Ugx 30 million*
1. Electronic shop busines
2. A pub in major cities
3. A restaurant in CBD
4. Fast Food restaurant in CBD
5. A jewelry shop
6. Furniture making business
7. Large scale farming or tree growing and sale after 5years
8. A school or rental housing units
9. A SACCO or buying land for sale to other people at higher price after 1 year
10. Starting wines and spirits wholesale shop
11. Starting a bookshop
12. Starting a taxi business
13. Starting a motor vehicle spare parts business
14. Starting a chemist shop
15. Starting a security firm
16. Starting a recording studio

Business to start in Uganda with *over Ush 300 million*
1. Building large scale rental houses
2. Real Estate firm
3. Starting business of supplying services of earth movers
4. Subcontractors/applying for tenders in any business
5.Research into future products and needs

*YOU NEED TO DO SOMETHING TO EARN INCOME*

UTL must not go into business &Uganda should embrace data transmission!


By Edward Mulindwa via UAH forum,

Friends

Communication is built for two things: voice transmission and data transmission. Voice transmission is very easy to install anywhere and in any country, for God’s sake if you put two cans apart and run a thread between them, two people can talk to each other. Data transmission is complicated, you need to wire the entire country. You need to install fiber optics and dig those pipes underground to every room in the house in the whole country. Some exchanges are so delicate that need to be underground to prevent dust from going in. We are talking about millions of dollars literary, and this needs to be a government investment, for it is the government that can find such amounts of money.

There is a reason I ignore Uganda discussion, for I spent about five years pushing Ugandans to embrace Data Communication, degree holders laughed at me for I was far behind on the developments Museveni is bringing to Uganda. Cells are coming and I will be in United States and talk to my mother in Lwengo. So they screamed. Educating them that cell communication was not going to transmit data was so complicated to put through the very thick heads.

Cell phones must never be relied on, for banks will never talk to each other through a cell tower but through Data transmission which Uganda does not have. I wrote several pieces in Uganda papers arguing our governors to start investing into a national cablization to no success, for every thick head was jumping up and down for the cell phones. They went ahead and torn poles out of the ground, and cables out of the underground for now Uganda communication is going to use cell towers.

Fast forward to 2019 I use a cell tower to communicate but inside my dwell I have what we call a loop line, which feeds directly into my dwell. Every city that has data communication is wired and will remain wired until when we get a new technology that transmits without a cable. And in 2019 Uganda does not have a single agency transmitting data. Not a Government agency nor a private agency. Without transmitting Data in 2019 you are a dead meat. Now for me I am interested into voice communication, and I have worked in the largest communication company in this country, but I look at the data that is transmitted as it controls, security parameters, as it controls traffic lights, as it controls all the details Bwanika a researcher needs, and Ugandans are simply not that ahead thinking.

It is very sad that in 2019 I have again repeated to post about Data transmission, when I literary torched years of my very valuable time to raise it in Ugandanet and the Barigye’ s simply failed to grasp what I was talking about.

The infrastructure its self and the service provided

Since the infrastructure is very crucial to national development and security, I will rather leave the whole of it in the government hand. Let that be left under the UTL, which must remain a full government agency. I am one of those people that believe into privatization, but national security must always be left in government hands.

Thus I will never privatize power supply, water supply, sewage treatment, communication infrastructure and a couple more I will not mention here. Because communication must be nationwide, the government is the only agency that will supply the infrastructure nationwide than private people that will care only on hot markets.If UTL could work and connect all the 19 million house hold in this country – Uganda could be earning in the region of US 50 -70 million dollar (under estimate) if not more in a year.” End quote.

We must never discourage Uganda companies or foreign companies from making money, becoming rich is never a sin. We are not Democrats and that is how capitalism works. UTL must not go into business, it must only remain in acquiring and maintaining the infrastructure that runs data. The companies above must be allowed to feed on UTL’s infrastructure and pay for it. If you are worried about the money they make in Uganda tax it.

The moment you combine ownership of infrastructure and using it to make money, you are forgetting that UTL is ran and owned by the government, I do not want the government to decide what it streams to my television, I need that to be decided by the market. Thus if I find out that Acholi love to watch porn, and they are willing to pay for it, I should be allowed to make my own down streaming system, pay UTL for its infrastructure, and I stream the porn to the Acholi. I am not for allowing one government agency that has already got a monopoly of owning and distributing the infrastructure to have a second monopoly of down streaming.

Lastly as this system becomes accessible to the country, Ugandans must start to fight the problem of buying power in Uganda. Yes the Semalulu’s can send the systems out there, but how many Ugandans can actually pay for the service? For argument sake let us put the service at 200 shillings a month, how many people outside the urban centers can afford that price every month? If I walk into a village 5 miles past Kikyuusa, how many people do I have in that village that can manage a line to their home at a monthly price of 200 shillings? There is a reason power flew from Soroti directly to Lira, were there no people in between? Yes they were but they were un able to tap on the line because they have no buying power.

Life in those regions has been left on kibbo and two minwes of Gonja too long that it needs to be addressed, for these services are too expensive, and the Semalulu’s that install and maintain them have to be paid fairly. Uganda’s programs have been ran on urban centers basis far too long when the majority of population is in rural areas. Fight the Data transmission war but fight it with a secondary war of buying power to the population. That buying power is going to stall every development you need in the country.

Personally I would address the buying power sector before I fight for the transmission of data. But again that is me.

Shimon school land belonged to Prince Kakungulu of Kibuli family


By Frank Mujabi via UAH forum
JULIUS Businge of The Independent Magazine cannot be this ignorant in his article,Sudhir’s Kingdom Kampala Mall’:https://www.independent.co.ug/sudhirs-kingdom-kampala-mall/. He is just an accomplished tribalistic liar.

He conveniently forgets to say that this building was the Shimoni school for over 50 years and that the land belonged to Prince Kakungulu of Kibuli family .

The newly open Kingdom Mall Kampala


The Kakungulu leased the land to Shimoni school over 60 years ago, and when the 49 year lease expired, some ‘Twalire’ thief in the Ministry of Education took over the land and fraudulently claimed that it belonged to the Ministry Of Education, and quickly sold it to the Saudi Prince.

The Saudi Prince who had started building a big hotel but was stopped by Prince Nakibinge who had the expired lease, and land titles.

The place has been in limbo until recently when now it is claimed that Sudhir owns it, having bought it off the Saudi Prince!

The Businge’s are convinsed that they can rewrite history with a gun.

Madness Of Black People



By Jean Gasho

Black people are the least successful people in the world. According to research, in USA white people are five times richer than black people. In the UK alone, half of young black males are unemployed. In Africa, poverty is the continent’s middle name.

Yes, white people and racism can be blamed here and there for the suffering of the black people, but the truth is most of the suffering of the black race is self-inflicted. Black people refuse to think for themselves. One of the greatest gifts God gave to mankind is the ability to think critically but sadly, black people refuses to do this, always needing a “man of God” to think for them. Donald Trump is reported to have said black people are lazy, I think what he meant was that black people are cognitively lazy. It’s not a racist statement, it’s brutal truth.

Being the poorest people in the world, yet the most religious, believing that God should somehow miraculously bless them with wealth by going to church and yet they will always remain in poverty. Not long ago I was also part of the black circus of religion. Being in a black Pentecostal church made me completely retarded as I was no longer able to use my God-given mind to think for myself. I entered the church building with money and left it there thinking that would give me a breakthrough.

Today I watch in sadness as millions of my black brothers and sisters abandon their minds in the name of Church/God. As we were entering into the New Year, black people flocked in churches on 31st December for All Night Services dubbed The Crossovers leaving churches at early hours of the morning on New Years Day. Most of these Crossover services have nothing to do with the salvation of soul or seeking the face of God but rather claiming financial breakthroughs and miracles.

The Black Pastors, Spiritual Fathers and “Prophets” made the most of New Year’s Eve. For them, New Year is a time to make more millions as they tell their gullible followers to sow seeds so that they will be blessed in 2017. They tell single women that they will be getting married in 2017. People were promised big breakthroughs, cars, houses, businesses, promotions etc. Everyone will be so hyped up at these freaky Crossover services.

Now the sad thing is these gullible followers were promised the very same thing the previous year. They were also told that 2016 was their year but at end of the year, they are exactly the same as they were the previous year, and the year after. No breakthroughs! No miracles! But they still went again to this New Years Eve for some fresh “anointing”. Is this not some mental illness?

In the UK prosperity false prophet, Uebert Angel resorted to Porn Star Ray J as his guest of honor at his CrossOver all night service just to pull the crowds. Ray J is the Black American who made Kim Kardashian rich and famous (through a sex tape) whilst being the loser in the end. Now Uebert Angel thinks it was something worth bragging about that Ray J was the guest of honor at his Crossover night service.

Zimbabwe probably has the highest population of prosperity “prophets” in Africa even though it is now the second poorest country in the world. The poverty stricken people of Zimbabwe are obsessed with false prophets and spiritual Fathers.

Ghana’s s Spiritual leader Bishop Dr. Obinim promised his millions of followers that “2017, work on the good prophecies and dreams to materialize”-Bishop Dr. Daniel Obinim says…

False Prophet Walter Magaya also held his own Crossover Night where he promised his blind followers prosperity. Another Zimbabwean False Prophet Eugene Makore who is always bragging on Facebook about his flashy cars asked people to sow a seed (money) so that they receive their 2017 breakthroughs. The breakthroughs was in packages, gold, silver, bronze, and platinum. These packages are according to how much money you give off course. With the platinum package, you get a chance to speak to Eugene Makore directly on the phone, which is supposed to be a “blessing”.

If you think Eugene Makore is barking mad, wait for this. Father of all false prophets in Africa Emmanuel Makandiwa did a massive New Year Cross Over service for 2017 where he promised even bigger financial miracles and breakthroughs. The gullible followers were told to pay as much as $7000 for bigger blessings. Emmanuel Makandiwa is the spiritual son of Ghana’s Prophet Victor Boateng. If Ghanaians are able to make these “Men of God” millionaires, why then do they blame *John Dramini Mahama for poverty.*

As I mentioned at the beginning of the article, white people are more successful financially than black people simply because they use their brains, its that simple. God doesn’t grant you success because you have paid money in church or fasted. Mark Zuckerberg didn’t pray and fast to become a billionaire, he simply used his intelligence and added hard work to it. No Papa had to lay his hands on him to invent Facebook.

So for those single women who have been promised husbands by their “prophets”, forget what Papa has said and just get out more, and maybe stop putting too much makeup that you are barely recognisable, and surely you will meet someone. For those who want financial breakthroughs, work hard, be innovative and maybe use your God given talents to get to your destiny. You don’t need special anointing oil from a “Prophet” to be successful.

2017 will just like any other year. You make it special by your own efforts. It isn’t a year of breakthroughs or whatever stupid themes your “prophets” promise you.

Until black people are able to think for themselves, work hard, identify opportunities, take a risk in entering into new areas, they will continue to be impoverished hence a nitch market for self-styled prophets to be richer. Stop this New Year Cross-Over madness.

Think Investment and stop fighting over increments of salaries


By Halima Kiberu via UAH facebook group

Jack Ma, the richest man in China said:
‘If you put Bananas and Money in front of Monkeys, monkeys will choose Bananas because monkeys do not know that money can buy a lot of Bananas’.

Jack Ma


IN REALITY, if you offer JOB and BUSINESS to people, they would choose JOB because most people do not know that BUSINESS can bring more MONEY than wages.

Similarly,Robert Kiyosaki, author of the best selling book “RICH DAD, POOR DAD” and also a business partner of Donald Trump said:
“One of the reasons poor are poor, is because they are NOT TRAINED TO RECOGNIZE ENTREPRENEURSHIP OPPORTUNITIES.
They spend too much time in school and what they have learnt in school, is to WORK FOR WAGES instead of MONEY WORKING FOR THEM.
“Profit is better than wages, for wages can make you a living but profits can bring you a fortune.”
THINK INVESTMENT and stop fighting over increments of salaries, it still won’t be enough*

Africans should learn something from Asians!


By Halima Kiberu via UAH facebook group

Take two businessmen, a Muganda by tribe,Semuwemba, running an electronic shop in Kampala and Patel(an Indian) running an autospare shop in Bwaise. Both men take their sons to Makerere University for a degree course. Patel’s son commutes daily from Bwaise while Semuwemba’s son lives in a small rented bedsitter near the university.

Before joining college, Patel’s son used to spend his days at the autospare shop- a routine he continues every Sat when not going to college. During the vacations, he even takes over the management. Semuwemba on the other side believes that shops is not the place for his University going son so he should get a degree and get a better job.

The two young men graduate and go seperate ways. Patel junior now takes over the running of the autospare shop. Semuwemba jr hits the road, looking for a job. Two years and he gets a job as a bank teller, supermarket clerk etc, after six months and with meagre income, Semuwemba’s son is frustrated and decides to go back for an MBA and improve his CV.

In the same period, Patel jr has gained some management skills of running the shop with a workforce of five employees. In his interactions with fellow businessmen and trips to source business stocks in China and india, he meets an Indian businessman who is trying to market some softwares and computer accessories manufactured in India and Taiwan. He and another accomplice form a company and agree to distribute them. At first, the company is operated from the backyard of the autoshop.

Both men are now 28. Patel jr is now confident and experienced in making business deals. He approaches a few companies, does presentations and convinces them to take up his products.

By now, he has passed the autospare shop to his siblings and is now running a full fledged IT company.

Semuwemba jr has graduated with an MBA, is now driving a car on loan and is now looking for a better job. He ends up becoming an employee at Patel’s company as a supervisor.

Guys, that is where the real entrepreneurship classes start, and a foot-holding is all our youth require. Don’t wonder why our MBA degree holders are looking for internship at Tuskys and wonder no more how Indians are still ruling this business economy!

Education without a focus only turns graduates into dependents. Let’s mentor & encourage our children accordingly.

Filipinos are better at business than Ugandans!


By George Okello in London

Ben Kiwanuka’s family is not an exception. My own mum also had her house mortgaged by a relative, and I only knew about it when the relative failed to keep up with the repayments and the bank began proceedings to repossess.To avoid any unnecessary bad blood, we just had to pay off the mortgage and transfer the title of the house to a sister.

Sad to say, but I don’t actually blame the relative. If I was living in Uganda, and caught up in the crushing poverty- with children going to university, but with no job, no income, not even knowing how the next meal will come, I would probably also do the same. I cant see my children starving when there is an asset that I can use to avoid such a catastrophe.

The problem with Ugandans is that they don’t have a business sense or culture- we will mortgage a house or land for shs.5 billion and then “invest” it in a monkey business. The state of the Ugandan economy now is such that it is only speculative investments- the ones made for quick profit- but carrying very high risks that most Ugandans go for. Our people will not go for investments where growth is slow, and it may take 3 or even 5 years just to break even before you begin to realise any profits. Our people do not separate capital and outgoings from free or disposable income that you can use as you wish. A person will import shoes for £5,000 and then begin to use up the sales coming in, not knowing that he first has to break even- the £5,000 has to be recovered first – before he can even begin to spend a single cent on himself.

In this respect, Filipinos are very different from Ugandans, in that they have a business sense. When you lend them money, they know it is a loan that has to be repaid. The same with the Indians. The family member they employ in their corner shop knows the shop runs on credit, so will be careful not to steal the money in the till, thinking that the owner of the business is very “rich”, which is what Ugandans often do. They see shs 500,000 in the till and they immediately think you are very rich- not knowing the bank will be demanding shs 3 million at the end of the month.

I once lent my Filipino in laws £10,000 to buy a Jeepney- Matatu in Uganda. In my mind, I did not think I would get it back- but thought that was the less painful way of putting them off from making constant demands for money. To my surprise my brother in law paid me back in less than two years, and even within those two years, he had bought 2 jeepneys of his own and was now employing other members of the family. Such a thing would never happen in Uganda!

At about the same time that I lent my in laws money, my own cousin here in London,bought a tractor for his parents to use for hire back home. But within three months, he was still getting letters from them saying they needed money for fuel, that the tractor had broken down and they needed money for spares, blah, blah blah. He got fed up and told them to sell the tractor and never to bother him again.

That’s Uganda for you. A country where no one wants to help himself or herself. A country god forgot.

%d bloggers like this: