Wednesday, January 23, 2013


I find it difficult to believe that Ambassador Klaus Holderbaum would accept an appointment as Presidential Advisor to Museveni. Over the years, President Museveni has received lectures from donors of the do's and don't, and one area has been the ambigous Presidential Advisors who are seen in the lens of many as just increasing the administrative budget and could be avoided. I get concerned to see a former Ambassador from Germany accepting that appointment which some Ugandans who have a feeling for the country could just not take up! The former Ambassador could decide to retire in Uganda, but helping Museveni'a administration is tricky against the background that donor funding to Museveni's Government has played a key role in sustaining him in State House which he should have left at least a decade ago. William Kituuka Kiwanuka HOLDERBAUM APPOINTED PRESIDENTIAL ADVISOR ON TOURISM Former German Ambassador to Uganda, Klaus Holderbaum, was recently appointed as Presidential Advisor on Tourism and Trade, after already serving previously as Advisor to the Ministry of Tourism, Trade and Industry, as it was then known. Holderbaum served as Germanys Ambassador to Uganda between 1999 and 2003 and then retired from the German Foreign Service, opting not to return home to his native Germany but making Uganda his permanent retirement home. Not long afterwards he received his first appointment as advisor to the tourism ministry, renewed at a later stage, and his current job therefore comes as no surprise to those with insight into the workings of Ugandas inner political circles. A member of the Skal Club of Kampala, in his capacity as tourism advisor to the ministry (rtd) and now in his new capacity as advisor to the President, Holderbaum has remained a feature in Kampala, not the least for his towering size which has him stand way above the crowds, though never once looking down on anyone. Like this correspondent, Holderbaum is a Permanent Resident in Uganda, having been granted residency for life, and equally like this correspondent Holderbaum has joined the tourism industry, though after his retirement from the German foreign service unlike this correspondent with 37+ years under his belt in Kenya and Uganda. And in a further coincidence of sorts, Holderbaum too enjoys cooking and creating culinary delights, making for a sound friendship between the two since his arrival in Uganda 13 years ago. Congratulations to Klaus on his appointment and that good fortune may shine on all his does for the sector from here on. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- GERMANY CUTS AID OVER DEMOCRACY January 19, 2012 January 19, 2012 - Germany decided to cut its foreign aid to Nicaragua due to the EU’s concerns about serious irregularities in the reelection of President Daniel Ortega last November, according to German Ambassador Betina Kern in an interview with El Nuevo Diario. “We are not interested in who won, rather how the elections were won,” Kern told the daily. Starting next year, Nicaragua will only receive German aid for ongoing water-treatment projects. All other cooperation will be cut. Following Ortega’s reelection, Germany has downgraded Nicaragua’s status from a Group A country to a Group B, meaning it’s no longer eligible for other kinds of aid. Germany is the first country to officially adopt a new policy towards Nicaragua following last November’s electoral process, which was widely decried for being opaque and riddled with nondemocratic irregularities. “The Nicaraguan regime must assume the consequences of its increasingly autocratic form of government,” Germany’s Minster of Foreign Cooperation Dirk Niebel said. The Sandinista government is trying to convince itself that Germany’s decision to cut aid is due to the economic crisis in Europe, even though German officials are making their reasons as clear as they can. Kern said Nicaragua will once again be eligible for aid when it returns to some semblance of rule of law, with judicial independence, free elections and respect for human rights.

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