If I had people to sponsor me to the seat of President of Uganda, I am sure I can bail the country out of the confusion it is in assuming that those forces that kept distablising Binaisa can keep at bay.
I have a formula which can get evry body in employment within the first 6 months in office. I can ensure that all get basic medical care. I can ensure that all needing basic education get it. I can ensure that everybody eats a balanced diet.
The problem we have with the leaders we have seen so far, they either think they are God and as such know everything and secondly, they look to solutions outside the country. Uganda is bailable, unfortunately, it a fallacy to imagine that with policies currently in place, the country will ever be bailed out.
I can assure you, what has been messed up can be reversed in 5 years. That is why some of us went to school.
SSEMUJJU NGANDA: Uganda now a begging field P
Written by Ssemujju Ibrahim Nganda
Wednesday, 11 August 2010 17:46
If no urgent solution is found, Uganda’s next leaders will inherit a country on the verge of collapse.
What is killing Uganda is President Museveni’s methods of conducting politics, which many of his followers and some opponents have now adopted.
Even the population is slowly accepting Museveni’s methods which are full of hypocrisy. Take for example the issuance of cash envelopes at public assemblies. It was once widespread in rural areas, but is now slowly taking root in urban centres.
Before you go to any campaign meeting, your handlers will ask you to fill your pockets with cash.
After the meeting, many will demand to see you, not to shake your hands for an inspiring speech, but to narrate to you their personal problems. Our people have been impoverished and reduced to beggars.
Each time I visit Betty Nambooze Bakireke (Mukono North MP), there are tens of constituents in her compound seeking help for all sorts of problems, ranging from unsettled medical bills to school fees.
The Kabaka of Buganda spent three days in Butambala ahead of the coronation anniversary touring the area. The levels of poverty shocked him. That is why he once again demanded Federo so that he and his government can be able to help his subjects.
I have told people in Kyadondo East, whom I am seeking to represent, that I have the capacity to issue them with cash envelopes but that will solve nothing. The real solution lies in redirecting our country.
Even those who genuinely support you want some rewards. That is what our politics has been turned into. Little wonder that the faint hearted politicians have resorted to selling their property to finance their way into Parliament, district and sub-county councils.
Issuing cash envelopes at public gatherings is a sin that the head of state shouldn’t have indulged in. The law requires leaders to declare gifts received, and I think we need a law to declare the source of funds Museveni and others dish out at public meetings.
So entrenched is this bribery culture that even primary school pupils have embraced it. What do you expect a kid who has taken on the behaviour of bribing voters in primary school elections to do when he/she graduates from university?
I do believe that Museveni does not like this country. All he cares for is being in power in perpetuity.
I have told people in Kyadondo East that if they demand cash rewards from their leaders, these leaders will recover the money by denying them the services they are supposed to enjoy.
I have been told by a friend that MPs have quietly increased their pay, citing rising fuel prices. They have increased their pay by over Shs 1.5m. I have also heard on radio that the Constituency Development Fund will now rise to Shs 70m.
This is not done to improve on the legislation process but to make cash available to dangle at voters. Our elections have become one big transaction, with politicians buying votes like they were beans.
Because the President distributes envelopes at meetings, every leader must now do it.
Museveni, with access to public resources, can afford to campaign for a whole year. In fact, he began his re-election campaign in 2007 under the guise of ‘Prosperity for All’ mobilisation tours.
If we had a serious Parliament, these useless tours should have been audited and stopped immediately. The lives of Ugandans everywhere the Revolutionary has gone have not changed at all. All they remember is an envelope given to an LC-I chairman or a farmer.
One other discovery I have made is the demand by voters to routinely see their MPs. It has become one of the grounds for re-election. They will ask you not to be like so and so who has not been returning or even waving at them.
I have been told that demanding that MPs spend more time in the constituencies is one that Museveni has manufactured. This allows him and his agents to push decisions through Parliament with no or little scrutiny.
Majority of the MPs are never in committee meetings because they are either attending burials or presiding over speech days in primary schools. There is less concentration on the core issues affecting the country and more on ceremonies.
As for me, I have asked the people to stop making these demands. MPs must spend more time in Parliament guarding the country from thieves.
The author is the Inter-Party Cooperation (IPC) Spokesman.