There is nothing new to expect from President Museveni as he takes office for the equivalent of a 6th 5 year term as President of Uganda. For President Museveni to imagine that he is doing any good for the Ugandans; he is simply deceiving himself. Yes, he is a net beneficiary of his childhood gream of being President of Uganda, unfortunately, the developments in the world are too fast for him to the extent that Uganda will remain limping. How on earth do you get a Parliament which was already over sized to have an additional 50 new members; it is simply absurd. The reason why we are an under developed country is that we get leaders who out of nothingness get to state power and as is the case for President Museveni with the armies he has groomed since early 1972 when he became a force to destabilize Uganda for his own ends; as can be seen now, he has never sat back and saw it worth to do a service to his country. All along Museveni schemed to get to the end, but may be those with him did not know what type of person they were with otherwise may be they would have thought otherwise. To come up with one third of the national budget to buy fighter planes is ridiculous. At the time of swearing in it would have made a lot of sense for the President to at least announce a reduction in the tax paid on fuel, instead he told his audience about assumed cheaper fuel from Sudan. Many of the poor countries are simply unfortunate as their Presidents are a liability. It is clear the trend that things will not be easy in the 5 years of his leadership, but only God who helped him get way to the top has the answer, but nothing much can be expected; these will be another 5 years wasted. You cannot tell President Museveni to stop the milking of the country through his ill advised administration expenditures which are not backed by economic sense but mere politicking because he wants to make a name for having been so long in power! It is sad.
We need to evolve leaders who are sensitive to the duty to their nation. However much power the leader sees himself having, it is absurd to mess with the constitution for the sake of overstaying in power. Uganda is a sad case for what would be a Pearl of Africa which is gone to the dogs. With a kraal size Parliament with majority NRM, surely, the country cannot expect much as everything will be passed at State House when he summons them to rubber stamp what he wants like the law which will make it impossible to get bail. Such is Africa. May be re- colonization would serve us better.
William Kituuka Kiwanuka
President Museveni made the first pronouncement of the amendment last weekend. PHOTO ISAAC KASAMANI
By Sheila Naturinda
Posted Sunday, May 15 2011 at 00:00
The new NRM MPs for the Ninth Parliament have been tasked to ensure the Constitution is amended to deny bail to any rioters and those described as economic saboteurs.
President Museveni, while meeting his party’s newly-elected legislators at his Entebbe residence on Saturday night said he wanted the amendment to be considered seriously before any other business of the House.
Most critics have described the yet to come Bill on the constitution amendment as a one-man law; aimed at stiffling dissenting opinions, especially from opposition leader Kizza Besigye and his co-protesters, whose now four-week long walk-to-work protests, have rubbed the President the wrong way.
The Swearing in of President Museveni, May 12 2011 does not hold what it would moreso that he had defaulted on the reasons he went for a 5 year bush war which led to
POLICE ARREST MAO
Opposition leaders sprayed with coloured water
Posted Wednesday, May 11 2011 at 00:00
Police stain Kampala with pink spray and thwart opposition attempt to meet at Constitution Square
Opposition politicians Norbert Mao and Muhammed Kibirige were by press time still under police detention after they were arrested as they tried to access the Constitution Square in Kampala to conduct a rally.
The politicians were part of a larger group that attempted to access the square in the heart of the city for a rally even after the police had insisted the area was out of bounds.
Also arrested with the politicians, who were protesting the rise in cost of basic commodities, was DP former candidate for the Budiope East parliamentary seat Moses Bigirwa.
Although other opposition figures Olara Otunnu (UPC), Salaam Musumba (FDC) and former independent presidential candidate Walter Lubega evaded arrest, they did not escape a flood of police water spray that left them dyed pink.
The group that escaped arrest relocated to UPC party headquarters at Uganda House, where they addressed the media and condemned the police action.
When contacted at Kira Road Police Station, where he was anticipating to be freed on police bond last night, Mr Mao said, “I am all pink.”
The DP president said the spray was an irritant, but that not much had gotten on him when the group was targeted by security forces.
The Inspector General of Police, Gen. Kale Kayihura, later told journalists at Kampala Central Police Station from where he oversaw the operation that he was happy his men had not used teargas.
He added that the same approach will be used to dissuade crowds from jamming Entebbe Road today when FDC president KizzaBesigye returns from seeking specialised medical treatment in Nairobi, saying his entourage “will be treated like a VIP convoy”.
Police spokesperson Judith Nabakooba said the decision to use water cannons over tear gas was a “tactical” one. It is the first time the measure has been used by security to disperse walk-to-work protestors since demonstrations began just over one month ago.
“The colour is basically to identify people who are part of the riots,” she said. “Normally when we use tear gas we find everybody complaining ‘I wasn’t party’ – but this water targets the people who are part of the gathering, and you find that when you want to follow them up it is very easy for identification.”
She also said the choice to use the spray was due to the location of the demonstration.
“Because they were in central business district, we needed to use a tactic which may not affect other people not party to what was taking place,” she said.
Mr Manesh Dada, the proprietor of Dada Photo Studio, claimed that his photo printing machine worth Shs30 million was damaged during the fracas.
“In the process of stopping the protestors, police shattered my glass pane as they sprayed this liquid on the passersby,” he said, while mopping up his soaked floor.
And Ali Nakibinge, a downtown parking attendant, pointed to the stained cars with broken parts he was tasked with monitoring, as well as the vendors forced to throw away their used books on either side of him.
“All this business was affected,” he said, standing on a street corner still running with pink water.
“Of course we were scared. I wouldn’t even come to Kampala if we are not looking for something to eat,” said the 23-year-old Kabowa resident.
At least two photographers were harassed by security forces for taking pictures of the water cannons being deployed.
Daily Monitor photographer Isaac Kasamani said when he arrived on the scene, he was greeted by a scene of about 50 anti-riot and military police, some with dogs, and witnessed a colleague being pulled down from where he was perched taking photos.
“As I was taking pictures, some police came and chased me away,” he said. “I refused to go away but more police men came and told me to just get off, pushing me away from the scene.”
Security forces continued to block all entrances to Constitution Square into the evening.
Ms Nabakooba said the square is off-limits for having been the site of demonstrations gone wrong in the past.
“People used to have rallies in that ground, but a lot of properties would be destroyed, people’s businesses would be looted,” she said.
The police spokesperson suggested the opposition look “in other places that are neutral” to hold their rallies. She could not, however, provide an example of a suitable ground.
WHY I LEFT NRM
Mbale — The Forum for Democratic Change's Maj. Gen. Mugisha Muntu told his supporters in Mbale yesterday that he was sacked from his position as army commander in 1998 because he protested against deviating from the original NRM ideology that took them to the bush.
Gen. Muntu said he joined the struggle to liberate Uganda from bad governance, corruption, vote-rigging and ushered it into a democratic state based on the principles of rule of law in 1986 but was disappointed to see this achievement vanish just 10 years after they had captured power from the dictators.
"My effort to liberate Uganda was frustrated by the President's ambition to return to dictatorship after the bush struggle," Gen. Muntu said. "My effort to advise him to maintain the status quo of our bush ideology cost me my job as army commander." He added that he rejected a ministerial position, as it would tie him to a party that had deviated from the principles of rule of law.
"Most of us parted ways with the NRM after its leaders opted to revisit the principles of dictatorship that we fought to restore," he said. He said there are many key policies that have been ignored by the current regime that were on the agenda at the time they went to the bush.
WHY BUSH WAR DEALS EMBARRASS NRM
Tuesday, 06 October 2009 20:41 By Kalundi Serumaga
The recent Buganda riots attracted a lot of sound and fury from citizens and commentators. However, amidst the heated debates, there was one Ugandan with an apparently very different concern. In a letter to a newspaper, one Rogers Muzigiti from Kasese wanted to know who was responsible for the pregnancy of a mentally ill woman who wanders the town. As it was her third pregnancy, he felt it was high time that the man responsible be identified and held accountable.
Unaccountable pregnancies among mentally and physically disabled and destitute women are actually quite a common African phenomenon. The Ghana News outlet in June this year reported how religious leaders in the northern town of Tamale were issuing grave warning to the men secretly responsible for the pregnancies of at least three street-wandering afflicted women.
In his song Kipenda Roho, the Tanzanian musician Remy Ongala mocks the men who have relations with such women in secret, and then act shocked when the women now nursing their children try to approach them during daylight. Often, when cornered, the man will deny everything, telling onlookers that the woman's claims are in fact further evidence of her madness. But the question as to why this woman is tying herself on him in particular, and not any other man, remains unanswered.
This is the situation in which the NRM leadership finds itself, in relation to Bugandaâ€™s demands for federalism, based on an enigmatic bush war agreement. They make a two-pointed rebuttal, insisting that the demands are not just unknown, but also intrinsically without merit.
On the first point, the official NRM party narrative is that no such agreement was ever made, and that any Baganda involved in the war werejust found around, to use President Museveniâ€™s description when last on WBS television.
Alternative versions have emerged from time to time -sometimes from unexpected quarters, as when the NRM's Hajji Nadduli referred a few years back to a rebel army bush war meeting with Baganda clan heads on Radio One's Spectrum show â€“ but on the whole, the NRMs line has prevailed. That is, until now.
The difference is critical. If in fact, it was the federalists activism that drove the bush war, then it means that the cause of the war has never been settled, and therefore it is completely unrealistic to expect a 'bukenke'-free political atmosphere in the country today.
On the second point about the merit of these demands, whether agreed to or not, we get into the reason why that unfortunate Kasese woman is now on her third pregnancy: the irresponsible man keeps on coming back for more, while maintaining his daylight denials.
We have had Gen. David Tinyefuza refer to Buganda's demands as rubbish and nonsense in a parliamentary statement; General Otafiire calls the Buganda institutions obsolete, and compares them in value to an NGO; and President Museveni derisively refers to cultural heads as chiefs who had nothing of value to add to the national development agenda.
However, each of these gentlemen are known to have sought some kind of political sustenance from the very same institutions when the need arose.
During his ultimately futile battle to extricate himself from UPDF service over a decade ago, Gen. Tinyefuza famously turned up at Bulange wearing a kanzu; Gen. Otafiire escorted Gen. Muhwezi and sought audience sympathy on a talk show on the (now unplugged) Buganda CBS radio at the height of their internecine NRM battles during Temangalo; and President Museveni only just last week revealed that he had clocked two years of missed calls to the Kabaka of Buganda.
Ugandans need to ask themselves why such important and respectable gentlemen seek to maintain relationships with what they have described as NGO-type obsolete institutions headed by mere chiefs who specialise in rubbish and nonsense?
Maybe, just maybe, the demands would have simply eventually faded away, had it not been for such contacts that keep on re-energising it with false hopes?
To an uninformed onlooker (or any graduate of the Kyankwanzi political education course), what happened across Buganda in the course of the last week did indeed look like an act of collective madness. The NRM ideologues have also sought like the men in Ongala's song “ to portray it as such, and hope that the rest of the country will swallow their allegation that the woman is just mad.
However, the denials will not work this time. It is obvious that this bending of history is becoming a national and regional liability, as the demands “ like the pregnancies “ will simply not go away.
The fact is that much more information on this Buganda-NRM relationship is going to emerge over the next weeks and months, and concerned citizens will be able to make their own judgment as who has been fooling who. The real question now is if there is anyone in the NRM party with a strong enough sense of duty, who will step forward and insist â€“ as Rogers Muzigiti is doing â€“ that those responsible should do the right thing and â€œtake care of the woman's ante-natal needs?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Kalundi is a social and political commentator. He can be reached on email: firstname.lastname@example.org
MAJOR PROBLEMS FACING UGANDA TODAY
By Oscar Otindo, Kenya.
69 Ministers, 327 Members of Parliament, 278 political appointees who include 80 resident District Commissioners and assistants, 75 presidential advisors and 43 private presidential secretaries and their deputies is just a picture of Uganda’s public administration. Pearl of Africa as commonly known is argued that not only is it a sleeping giant but an over governed and unproductive country.
It has many administrative units; 45,000 local councils, 5500 parishes, 1026 sub-counties, 151 counties, 18 municipalities and 80 districts. All these structures have executive 10 man executive officials. So, the total number of officials is 10 times the number of every administrative unit.
How does this nation manage its servants? Uganda’s expenditure is very enormous and abnormal. A presidential advisor and his deputy earns 908.5 million Ugandan shillings enough to pay 378 primary school teachers a salary of 200,000 Ugandan shillings a month. Private presidential secretary and his assistant earn 7.5 billion shillings enough to; support 2,077 primary schools with 800 pupils each, buy drugs for 890 health centers, construct 935 classrooms or pay 37,500 primary school teachers. Members of Parliament altogether earn 57 billion excluding the allowances, the 69 ministers have all sorts of allowances and only government expenditure on Ministers vehicles fuel, oil and maintenance in 2006/07 was 92 billion Ugandan shillings.
In 1986, the National Resistance Movement came to power, it collected 84 billion as revenue. Inflation was at 240 percent, it worked tirelessly and revived the economy reducing inflation to 0.3 percent. The present government collects 4 trillion as revenue but sectors like education and health and education which used to be vibrant are in shambles.
The nation has 31 million people, according to the ministry of health, there’s one doctor to every 300,000 people. Surprisingly, there’s one administrative leader to every 6 Ugandan. The nation has poor administrative structures, poor administration and provides poor services to its citizens. The government makes good policies but it’s very hard for them to be implemented leading all these deficiencies.
Policies like: decentralization policy to help distribute resources evenly; minimum health package which puts all health centers under a structured organization; Medium Term Expenditure Framework that makes the government budget and expenditure known after every 3 years. Such good and efficient policies have been made by the government but 600 billion Ugandan shillings is lost every year.
The main reason why such policies cannot be implemented is due to the government’s huge expenditure to its top leaders and poor wages paid to its civil servants. This has led to absenteeism, lack of morale as the public servants do other jobs beside their jobs to supplement their earnings.
It’s arguably that the nation has produced one of the brightest people in the East Africa region with the prestigious Makerere University but has the lowest productivity in the region. This is because Ugandans are juggling too many sources of income hence cannot specialize and put all their effort in one to enable them get sufficient income.
The country also has a culture of passing laws to solve problems, this has led to it having too many laws and continuing to pass others yet the ones present are neither effective nor implementable. For instance, it has failed to implement the traffic and productive law yet it has passed a law to gag the media, limiting public participation in governance and locking up journalists with dissenting views.
Pundits say that for the country to develop, it needs to reduce its administrative leaders, get more serious in enforcing its policies and laws. The administration is the main cause of the government’s huge expenditure, leading to lack of funds in other sectors and poverty. The country needs to be serious in economic transformation and development by getting its priorities right.
Civil society, donors, private sector experts and political analysts have raised numerous concerns over the governments expenditure on its administration but their pleas have fallen on deaf ears. The country not only needs a budget discipline but get their priorities right.
The writer is a Kenyan volunteer and activist based in Nairobi, Kenya.
Problems in Uganda are the outcome of various factors. The country has poor infrastructure and the economic condition is really meager in terms of other countries. The foremost Uganda problem is poverty and it's draining the local masses like anything. The local people are deprived of shelter and food. Many people live below the poverty line. Uganda has adopted many anti-poverty programs but the financial problems hamper the government to implement such programs. The government aims to eradicate the extreme poverty by 2017. Uganda's agricultural growth and development are the main area of concern related to the poverty issue.
Health is another problem of Uganda that is of grave concern. People with low income in Uganda find it really tough to avail the health care. The demographics chart reveals that more than 10% of the adult population in Uganda has HIV AIDS and approximately one million children from it and many other malnutrition related health problems. The number of doctors in Uganda is not sufficient for attending to its sick people. Approximately there is one doctor per 20000 sick people. Thus most people go untreated. Several initiatives related to co-operative health systems are implemented in Uganda by the USAID. The USAID developed financial strategy along with designing various health insurance schemes in various parts of the country. Fruitful results are seen in co-operative health plans and it's growing day by day.
Problems in Uganda also hampers the education system and even the children's are deprived of the primary level of education and thus the country suffers from ignorance and illiteracy. Somehow the government is looking after the education system and thus the mission schools and secondary schools were established in 1890s and 1924 respectively. In the mid-1980s the education sector improved and measures are still being taken to improve the educational standards in Uganda.
Uganda has faced many problems in the past and is still wrought with many issues. But the nation is always trying to overcome such problems and emerge as one of Africa's most developed countries.
CORRUPTION COSTS SHS 500BN A YEAR IN UGANDA
21 January 2008
Kampala — Corruption and ineffective public institutions are still undermining good governance in the country, a report by the African Peer Review Mechanism National Commission has said.
"The World Bank (2005) estimates that Uganda loses about $300m (sh510b) per year through corruption and procurement malpractices," the 592-pages report notes.
NRM loser MPs shock Museveni Print E-mail
Written by EDRIS KIGGUNDU & DAVID TASH LUMU
Sunday, 24 October 2010 18:14
You either handle our petitions or we join opposition
At least 70 NRM leaning MPs who lost in the September party primaries told President Museveni last Thursday that they are determined to join the opposition in hanging his ministers implicated in the 2007 CHOGM related impropriety if the party fails to handle their petitions expeditiously.
Insider accounts of the NRM caucus meeting in Entebbe on Thursday night indicate that the MPs drifted away from the main agenda of the meeting –discussing the CHOGM report – and instead demanded that they discuss matters related to petitions filed after the chaotic primaries.
The revolt like atmosphere was mainly led by Lwemiyaga MP, Theodore Ssekikubo, and Bukanga MP, Nathan Byanyima, two MPs, who believe the party has mishandled the outcome of their petitions.
Sources have told us that Rubanda West MP, Henry Banyenzaki, later joined the duo in agitating for a thorough discussion of the mess that characterised the party polls. We have been told that these bitter legislators felt that the meeting wanted to force them to save the Vice President, Prof Gilbert Bukenya, the minister of Security, Amama Mbabazi, Foreign Affairs minister, Sam Kutesa, Works and Transport minister, John Nasasira, and a couple of other ministers implicated in CHOGM related impropriety —without minding about their (MPs) fate.
Our sources have also told us that the plan was for the NRM MPs to adopt a resolution stipulating that they should go hard on the ministry technocrats and spare the ministers, something that many of them did not agree with.
“We are not going to debate the CHOGM report when we have our own pertinent issues regarding the Kigongo committee,” Byanyima, who lost in the primaries, reportedly said during the meeting attended by more than 150 MPs. Moses Kigongo’s team is handling the arising petitions and has one month to file its report.
With debate on the CHOGM report due to start this week, this new move directly puts the political future of the implicated ministers in jeopardy, especially if the disgruntled MPs go ahead and join hands with the opposition.
Our sources have told us that having realised the political implications of the above scenario, Museveni quickly conceded to this demand and directed the party’s Chief Whip, Daudi Migereko, who chaired the caucus, to call upon Secretary General, Amama Mbabazi, to update the MPs on Kigongo’s work.
Mbabazi gave a brief on the situation, saying that 160 petitions had been determined, and that only 58 were pending. He also told MPs to prepare for the presidential nominations which kick off today (October 25), urging them to attend Museveni’s rally at Kololo Airstrip shortly after his nomination.
But after Mbabazi’s brief, our sources say, Migereko again attempted to table the CHOGM report issue, forcing the MPs to heckle him. They instead unanimously requested Museveni to deal with the petitions.
At this point, Museveni, who at first looked jolly and exhibited a calm demeanor, took on a tough stance.
“Okay, discuss your issues,” said the President, looking uneasy as he walked out of the meeting.
We have learnt that the disgruntled MPs first threatened to boycott the earlier scheduled National Executive Committee meeting after it emerged that some top members of their party had deliberately leaked to the press a list of official NRM flag-bearers—yet the Kigongo committee, tasked to iron out the petitions, had not finished its work.
These MPs petitioned Museveni over the above matter, urging him to clarify the matter lest they boycott the NEC meeting. Museveni then decided to cancel the scheduled NEC and instead summon the NRM caucus to State House to discuss the CHOGM report.
But the MPs had already come up with a game plan whereby they would not let Museveni dictate what position to take during the CHOGM debate if he failed to resolve their grievances. Museveni told the MPs that he could not support rigging and corruption because those are two of the evils that forced him to go to the bush in 1981.
He assured the MPs that any party member found guilty of cheating in the recent primaries shall have his/her results cancelled.
“In fact, in the near future we are going to explore the possibility of expelling errant members. They are giving the party a bad name,” Museveni told the meeting.
Away from the NRM elections mess, Museveni asked the MPs to support the Kampala City Bill, which seeks to place the management of the city into the hands of the central government. He said the bill should be tabled as soon as possible in Parliament.
“I am tired of potholes in the city. There’s an outcry over these potholes and this bill will solve this,” Museveni reportedly said.
According to our sources, Museveni also asked MPs to support another bill that seeks to penalise traditional and cultural leaders who breach Article 246 of the Constitution that prohibits participating in politics.
The caucus resolved that Museveni meets all the MPs with grievances arising out of the party primaries on Sunday (yesterday) to explore how their problems can be solved. It was thus agreed that another NRM caucus meeting be convened on Wednesday this week to discuss the CHOGM report. Museveni also told them that on Tuesday this week, the party’s NEC would be convened.
Ministers speak out
Meanwhile, Foreign Affairs minister, Sam Kutesa, and Attorney General, Khiddu Makubuya, both of whom are implicated in the mismanagement of CHOGM funds by the Public Accounts Committee, said they were ready to prove their innocence.
Kutesa, who is indicted over the CHOGM car deal in which government spent Shs 9 billion to purchase 30 cars and lease another 144 for only four days, told The Observer on Friday that the “accusations are political.”
On the other hand, Makubuya said he has no problem with some NRM MPs joining the opposition to witch-hunt him.
“I have no problem. Whatever comes, let it come. I have a job (lawyer) and I can do that after (leaving government). My history is that I don’t panic,” he said.
In July, a group of donors from the European Union in an appraisal report of government’s general performance warned that they could reduce on their budget support unless government acts on the CHOGM audit reports and other major corruption cases.
“This lack of accountability in the use of public resources, coupled with weak capacity in some areas of public finance management such as procurement continues to hamper the impact of spending on service delivery and public investments,” they noted in their appraisal.