Thursday, December 16, 2010



Photo images that depict poverty in Uganda

The poverty in Buganda is within the whole poverty 'framework' in which President Museveni's Government has unfortunately put the country Uganda with 25 years of successfully disempowering the people given the policies in implementation by his Government. It is therefore no surprise that the Buganda establishment could focus on a topic centred on poverty for the 2010 Ttabamiruka at Hotel Africana; Friday, 17 December 2010. Poverty is being worsened by the depreciating value of the shilling; the increased reduction of disposable income for most productive workers; increased dependancy given unemployment of many would be employed as well as the vulnerable members of our society who have to depend on the active working population, not forgetting the increasing population in general hence family sizes of many households. The Government priorities which are consumer based as opposed to creation of more value are equally to blame given that much of what is milked from the people goes to what is better termed as consumption. The Presidents' policies which command more political sense as opposed to economic sense are equally to blame. When you move through Buganda as well as most parts of Uganda, you wonder what people's economic base is.

However, even in the prevailing mess, Buganda is a power block which can help to empower the people who are found within the jurisdiction. A case in point is BUCADEF. It is true that this organization has done some good work. It is best to get down on the drawing board and see what can be done better. Mengo has Buganda land Board as one sure income generating area. There is need to channel resorces from this Board to induce development elsewhere. Mengo should encourage competition for existing establishments. Many people may love to put their heads in a better Buganda outlook but the question is: How are such opportunities accessed? We have read in the reports of the on going Commission on Kasubi Fire, and one thing comes clear out that an individual could command up to or more than shs 100 million and even bank it on her personal account and also fail to reward others appropriately! This can not continue in modern Buganda. This money, given to a good planner can do miracles. Secondly, there is the problem of who gives instructions and where and to who people have to report to. Someone says that reports of insecurity were made but no body from Bulange acted! Thirdly, the accountability must be clear. It is wrong for people to assume that kingdom funds are not subject to audit. People who are actually poor by any standards sacrifice to donate to Mengo establishment. The accountability should be straight.

The way to go is to have people who are ready to see the people in Buganda productive. Such positions should clearly be competed for. People can come up with workplans which when given money can supervise to proper implementation. Surely, Buganda land Board can be one of the pivotal areas that can support this type of enterprise bath and undertaking. We currently read in the press that some people are encroaching on Masaza land and other lands belonging to Buganda kingdom. If part of these lands are mortagaged, and funds used for agro - industrialization, surely, people would slowly have some income into their pockets. There are a few enterprizes i can list that could be financed. Among these are:
1. The growing of Lemon Grass - a lot of industrial activity is possible surrounding extracting from the lemon grass.
2. The fruit trees - these grow in many parts of Buganda and Uganda; they can be grown and industrially extracted then exported.
3. Moringa oleifera - this tree has one of the best sources of oil which is the best for human consumption and equally medicinal and the leaves are good in providing vitamin A.
4. Herbal Medicine resources are at hand and these can be grown and extracted for export market.
5. The plant which was being used locally for supporting Vanilla has seeds which are a source of the substitute for diesel. Surely, why can't people be encouraged to grow it for small scale industrial procuction as well as running diesel engines/
6. We can go into manufacture of solar lanterns as well as mobile chargers.

All in all, we understand our constraints and seriously need people who can work to see Buganda out of the mess, not the type we have seen who are ready to loot the little there is or may be.
William Kituuka Kiwanuka

Rural poverty in Uganda - Source:

Uganda has made enormous progress in reducing poverty, slashing the incidence of poverty from 56 per cent of the population in 1992 to 31 per cent in 2005. In urban areas the decrease has been even sharper, to 12 per cent. But poverty remains firmly entrenched in the country’s rural areas, which are home to more than 85 per cent of
Ugandans. About 40 per cent of rural people – some 10 million men, women and children – live in poverty.

Who are Uganda's rural poor people?
The poorest Ugandans include millions of subsistence farmers who live in remote, scattered locations throughout the country. Remoteness makes people poor. It excludes them from participating in the benefits of the country’s steady economic growth and dynamic modernization process. In remote rural areas smallholder farmers do not have access to the vehicles and roads they need for transporting produce to markets, and market linkages are weak or non-existent. Farmers lack inputs and technologies to help them increase production and reduce pests and disease. And they lack access to financial services that would enable them to raise their incomes by improving and expanding their production and establishing small enterprises.

Where are Uganda's rural poor people?
The poorest regions of the country are the north and north-east, where outbreaks of civil strife have disrupted the lives and agricultural production of small-scale farmers. These regions are fragile, dry and sub-humid areas where the extreme variability of rainfall and soil fertility makes farming a challenge. In these regions production falls short of minimum household needs and people are particularly vulnerable to food insecurity. Nationwide, about 5 per cent of rural households continue to experience food insecurity.

Why are Uganda's rural people poor?
Health and social issues weigh heavily on rural poverty in Uganda. The population of about 30 million is growing at a rate of 3.2 per cent a year, doubling every 20 years. Although the country has been successful in dramatically reducing the incidence of HIV/AIDS, the pandemic has caused the death of large numbers of young adults, leaving an estimated 1 million children without parents. Rural women are particularly disadvantaged because of the lack of health care and other social services. They work longer hours than men and have limited access to resources and little control over what they produce. They bear the burdens of seeing that their households are fed adequately and providing care for the sick, the elderly and orphaned children.
Source: IFAD

Mengo asks Government to pay sh20b debt -
Thursday, 16th December, 2010
By Moses Mulondo and Francis Kagolo
THE Buganda Kingdom has castigated the Government for failure to clear a sh20b debt.
Opening the Buganda Youth Conference at Hotel Africana in Kampala yesterday, the Buganda deputy Katikkiro (premier), Emmanuel Ssendaula, said the kingdom’s development projects had been paralysed due to the Government’s failure to pay the debt.

Poverty in Uganda - Source:
Learn How Poverty in Uganda Has Reached Alarming Levels
How can Poverty In Uganda be Eradicated Forever? Its like Poverty has roots in Uganda and Africa in general.Uganda has taken some measures to eradicate poverty but still more than 50% of the population still survive under one dollar per day. Therefore, on this page we are ready to show the causes of poverty and how Uganda is trying to combat it.

Poverty is still growing in the majority of people . Structural adjustment programs have improved macroeconomic management in some areas, but political failures in many areas have led to falling per capita incomes, while war and economic collapse have reduced the weakest to near-destitution.

The majority of the poor in Uganda as identified by a number of studies, includethe women, children, elderly, youth, landless and the terminally ill.

Although in some Ugandan parts growth has reduced poverty for many and brought luxury to some, in most others hundreds of millions still lack the security, employment, shelter, health care, education and mobility needed for a decent life. Providing the poor with opportunities for economic security and personal autonomy is surely the most important and difficult goal of development policy and practice.

In Uganda poverty is defined by the poor as not only “a situation of perpetual need for the daily necessities of life but a feeling of powerlessness to influence the things around you”. Poverty therefore, is perceived as a complex, multidimensional.

phenomenon in which the influencing factors are interlinked and often interdependent and include, amongst others, access to natural resources, human factors, financial assets, social capital and physical infrastructure.

The interconnectedness of the causes and effects of poverty demonstrate the frustration poor people face in moving out of poverty as the many factors produce vicious cycle of poverty.

In addition, poverty in Uganda is not a uniform condition affecting all groups of people and locations in the same ways. Some factors are common (e.g. insufficient food,low yields and few productive assets, inadequate income to meet health care and education costs, restricted access to services, large families, lack of social support and poor health.)

The Economic Policy and Research Centre (November 4, 2003) presented their study which showed that the private tender system in 6 districts studied that ie Mbale, Kamuli, Mubende, Masaka, Ntungamo and Arua has ‘very serious defects’ and amounts to little more than a transfer of money from the ordinary often very poor tax payers, to the pockets of richer tax collection agents and their associates. “Given that gross profit margins to tenderers vary from between 100% to almost 1,000% in the above districts, the private tendering system amounts to a gigantic rip off,” said Professor Frank Ellise, a Senior Consultant on the EPRC study team.

This happens because tax collection contracts for market places, fish landing sites and parishes are tendered out on the basis of an “assessed” reserve price that is supposed to represent the amount of tax likely to be collected from that market or site. tenderers are usually permitted an “official” profit margin of about 20% above this reserve price. In other wards for an assessed revenue potential of 1milloin shillings, the reserve price would be shs 800,000. It is in the assessors’ interest to keep the reserve price low so that the tenderes have the potential to make very high unofficial profits on the taxes they collect… profits that can ultimately be shared with corrupt district officials, tender board members and local politicians.

The gap between revenue actually collected and the official tender price represents profits of as much as 407% in Kamuli, 558% in Masaka and an alarming 970% in Ntungamo. This money could have been obtained y councils if there was participatory involvement of the people. this situation is very discouraging especially when we consider that it is the poor who are being hurt the most and, in this type of circumstances, because there is a revenue gap in the local governments, the local governments continue to search for new ways to generate higher incomes hence burdening the residents with ever increasing numbers and types pf levies, licences, fees and taxes to the point that multiple local level licensing and taxation, and its maladministration, is now among the leading cause of poverty in Uganda. (The Monitor, Monday, November 17, 2003).

In 2006, Uganda debt network carried out a study to establish the extent to which budgeting at the local government level goes beyond the annual ritual exercise of dispensing funds sent from the central government according to set conditions aiming at solving the problems facing the poor. The study was carried out against the background of general perception that in the majority of cases, local governments’ plans and budgets don’t aim at solving the problems facing the poor, but are rather an annual ritual exercise of obtaining funds in accordance to the decentralization framework. Politians, especially in the district councils often allocate the majority of the resources to the sectors that have physical and visible out puts and that can attract public attention and subsequently strengthening their political base. These include health education and roads. So all in all, citizens require adequate information to participate in budget debates hence be able to get a slice meant see to their welfare and also ensure that resources are not squandered.

Involvement of the Community in Participatory Governance

Participatory Governance is the process to develop community structures and mechanisms that are truly responsive to community needs and aspirations. The participatory governance system constitutes the basis for effective management of poverty reduction initiative at individual, household and community level. The participatory governance constitutes the pillar for development of an evidence based planning and performance based service delivery for effective use of resources and improved accountability in the management of public affairs. The participatory governance system offers a two way communication in which the community reciprocates positively to the government polices and programmes by uplifting their well being. This relationship begets confidence among members of the community and trust in the state decision, resulting in good economic, political and administrative governance at all levels.

Otunnu to eradicate poverty in Buganda -
Ultimate Media
The presidential candidate of the Uganda Peoples’ Congress, Dr. Olara Otunnu has promised to eliminate poverty in Buganda among other parts of the country.
Otunnu, who returned to Uganda in August 2009, says despite Buganda being located in the centre of the country, most of its people are poor because of the despotic leadership of president Museveni. He was speaking in a press conference at Uganda House in Kampala.
He says if he wins elections the king of Buganda and all other traditional chiefs in the country will have some control over the natural resources.
On Busoga, Otunnu said the region is the only producer of electricity which the country exports to Kenya, Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda but its people are poor because of the selfish interests of people in government.

Uganda Government News: Bidandi decries poverty in Buganda, north - Source:
Ultimate Media
The president of the Peoples Progressive Party, Bidandi Sali has expressed worry over the escalating levels of poverty among people in Northern and central Uganda.
He wonders that the people of Buganda and north give Museveni votes but they have remained poor.
Addressing journalists at his Kampala party office today, Bidandi asked the people of Buganda and north to refuse to vote NRM in 2011 general elections.
He notes that the government of President Museveni impoverishes people through corruption, land grabbing and harassment of opposition supporters.
Bidandi is also the former minister of Uganda for Local Government and President Museveni’s political ally.

UGANDA: World Bank Cuts Poverty Funds, Cites Corruption - Source:

Photo: Manoocher Deghati/IRIN
Children posing for a photo after picking grains at Oromi IDP camp, Kitgum District, northern Uganda. Every morsel of food is important

KAMPALA, 30 May 2007 (IRIN) – The World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA) has reduced support for poverty alleviation programmes in Uganda over concerns about the allocation of funds and financial management, the Bank said.
The IDA is a section of the Bank that makes interest-free loans to the world’s poorest countries.
“The reduction in IDA support from US$150 million to $125 million for PRSC [Sixth Poverty Reduction Support Credit] underlines the need for the government to consider ways of improving performance in budget execution, decentralisation and anti-corruption,” Uganda’s World Bank Country Manager Grace Yabrudy said.
She was speaking during the signing of two development credit agreements – US$125 million for poverty reduction and another $300 million for the expansion of the country’s power sector.
Uganda’s Finance Minister, Ezra Suruma, acknowledged that the government had spent more resources on administration than budgeted.
“In order to maintain peace and harmony, we had to spend some funds on the creation of new districts and elections. This pushed the budget on public administration up, but we don’t expect this to recur,” Suruma told IRIN.

Lack of efficiency
Yabrudy said Uganda’s resource requirements for a sustainable, high growth and pro-poor development were far higher than the savings generated domestically.
“Uganda, therefore, needs to strive for maximum efficiency and impact from every shilling of available resources, and cannot afford to waste them away on ill-defined projects or activities, nor allow resources to be stolen or diverted,” she added.
She said the cost of public administration significantly exceeded the approved budget, necessitating a supplementary allocation at the end of the 2005-2006 fiscal year.
However, she added, the World Bank was confident Uganda would regain its development momentum and “claim its rightful place as a high-impact, results-oriented, pro-poor development model”.

Corruption issues
The PRSCs aim to boost much-needed funding of key government services, such as universal primary education and healthcare. The funding also supports the Poverty Eradication Action Plan to extend social services in education, health, water and sanitation, and to combat corruption.
A number of financial scandals involving senior government officials have been exposed in Uganda during the last few years.
On 28 May, the former health minister, Jim Muhwezi, was charged and detained in connection with the alleged embezzlement of $1.63 million meant for the purchase of vaccines. Muhwezi’s former deputies, Mike Mukula and Alex Kamugisha, are facing similar charges and were freed on bail on 25 May. Meanwhile, Alice Kaboye, an aide to President Yoweri Museveni, was also charged with embezzlement in May.
The three former health ministry officials were also incriminated in a corruption scandal involving grants from the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. The scam caused donors to withhold funding in 2005.
Suruma said allegations of graft in the management of money from the Global Fund were under investigation.
What Museveni says to Ugandans, leaves out his real goals: Source:
Written by Eric Kashambuzi on 2010-12-04 09:16
A careful reading of Museveni statements and observation of what is happening on the ground show a mismatch. This could not be an accident, it was planned. Museveni never discloses his real intentions. Having realized that the truth was in what Museveni omitted from his statements, I wrote an article a few days ago urging Ugandans to begin to think dialectically: to look for the truth in that which is not said. That is Ugandans should not take Museveni statements at face value.

Museveni studied carefully the minds and aspirations of Ugandans and discovered that what they want is different from what he wants. He chose a two-pronged strategy: make statements about what Ugandans want to hear and implement what he wants to achieve, hence the mismatch noted above. After 25 years of NRM rule, Ugandans see a country in a mess. Not so for Museveni. Keeping Uganda messy, Ugandans drinking too much alcohol and praying the whole night or watching pornography movies etc is helping him to advance his goal towards total domination of the country. Bahororo dominated Bantu/Bairu in southwest Uganda by impoverishing and marginalizing them. This method has been extended to the whole country. That is why you do not hear Museveni expressing regret that children are dropping out of school, Uganda youth are unemployed and poverty has remained unacceptably high. All these adverse developments are in line with what he wants: impoverish and weaken Ugandans and govern them with minimum difficulty. Below are illustrations of contrasts regarding what he preaches and implements.

First, when Museveni launched his guerrilla war in 1981 he announced that the goal was to remove Obote and UPC government from power because 1980 elections had been rigged. He knew that that is what disgruntled Baganda and Catholics wanted to hear. Baganda and Catholics therefore did not bother to ask whether Museveni went for military training since the 1960s in anticipation of rigging 1980 elections. If they had searched a little they would have discovered that Museveni had a different goal – to promote ascendance of Bahororo in order to dominate Uganda. He kept this real goal from public view.

Second, when Museveni was in the bush, he attacked the unpopular structural adjustment as a capitalist tool implemented by Obote regime. He preached socialism as a solution because that is what many Ugandans wanted to hear. If Ugandans had checked they would have discovered that Museveni’s guerrilla war was financed by capitalist Tiny Rowland and chairman of Ronrho and publicized by William Pike of BBC. It is possible that capitalist UK government under Margaret Thatcher supported Museveni’s bush war because Linda Chalker then minister in Thatcher’s government was the first foreign dignitary to meet Museveni as president of Uganda. If Ugandans had checked all these developments, they would have discovered the truth that Museveni was all along working with British capitalists to overthrow a government of Obote considered socialist.

Third, when Museveni was relentlessly pushing for privatization of public enterprises en masse without even assessing the value of those assets first, Uganda entrepreneurs were only keen about getting something. If they had studied the matter closely they would have realized that Museveni was under pressure from Britain to return Asians and corporations to Uganda and give back their properties. The economic recovery program of 1987 stressed foreign investment, export promotion and exchange rate liberalization to benefit foreign investors. Because Ugandans did not have capital and skills, they ended up losing except a few individuals connected to the first family.

Fourth, Museveni preached that religion was between an individual and his/her God and should be excluded from politics. When he began dishing out Pajero vehicles and thick brown envelopes to Protestant Bishops Ugandans were told that this was a symbol of presidential magnanimity. If Ugandans had done a little research, they would have discovered that Pajeros and thick brown envelopes went to Protestant Bishops whom Museveni wanted for political support. Catholic Bishops, if lucky, received a cow because Museveni already had them in his pocket. Therefore Protestant Bishops were being corrupted and religion was back in politics through the back door.

Fifth, one of Museveni’s goals has been to increase immigrants into Uganda, grab land and good jobs and eventually outnumber indigenous population. When the 1995 constitution was being drawn up, Museveni stressed the idea of free mobility and settlement anywhere in the country. Separately, he also emphasized that East African economic integration and political federation would open up markets and with a common passport facilitate mobility within the region. He added that Uganda still had plenty of arable land and could accommodate more people. Further, Museveni has been a strong supporter of a liberal immigration and refugee policy. Ugandans thought all these things would benefit them and gave Museveni support. If they had checked a little, they would have discovered that his real goal is to facilitate entry and settlement into Uganda of Tutsi, Sudanese, Ethiopians, Eritreans, Kenyans and Somalis. These arrangements would turn Uganda into another ‘Ivory Coast’ where pro-Museveni immigrants and refugees would outnumber indigenous Ugandans. It would also help him achieve his Tutsi Empire dream that could eventually be extended to the Horn of Africa.

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