Opinion: 100k shillings and stumbling…

The Government of Uganda (GoU) and the National Resistance Movement (NRM) have no approved an programme where they give “vulnerable” a voucher of 100,000 shillings. This is based out of a “Basket Calculation Formula”. This voucher is supposed to cover maize/posho, beans, bars of soap, cooking oil and other expenditure.

What is striking is how half-baked this voucher is. As the NRM and the Government seems to only doing it on a weird merit. They are not considering the costs of UMEME, Rent or anything else. Not like 20k is covering that. Because, the voucher is based on covering food for a month for 80k. That means the 20k is covering for everything else. I wonder, if that pays the boda-boda for dropping off the food during the lockdown? No additions for transport fees or even other costs. Which is still liable for… as the lockdown prolongs and the citizens cannot go to the market and make the funds to pay these bills.

This basket calculation formula is really a basket case. It isn’t functioning for a real family. This is just based on a fixed sum of funds to give the vulnerable. The vulnerable, which is based on 13 categories and you can wonder if the state an find these people. The citizens who they have put on that list. Isn’t the ones that is paying vat or being registered to authorities. The state can find out who is hired and works in a bar, but finding street-vendors and hawkers. That is a mission in its own. Doubt they are registered somewhere…

The government will really struggle to find these workers and the ones within the gig-economy who is struggling. Unless, they are planning to send the RDCs and RPC to the ghettos and streets to see if anyone is there. Secondly, if they are going to send out forms and applications to the people now to figure out, who is working where and whatnot.

This is when you know things are dire and distress. The state knew the gig-economy been the driver. The system is exposed and the needs are vast. This 100k shillings drive will not resolve things, but only patch the hurt for a minute. It is not like this solve the bills or the running expenses while awaiting release out of lockdown. This is a shot at the moon and aiming for the stars.

If the state had made a significant plan and shown character on this. It would have made sense. If they had a plan of serious amount of money and actually game-changing. Also, ensured all other expenses was covered. That there was a suspension of costs and the burdens on electricity, water and other utilities. That could have helped. Not to mention gas and possible petrol. As the black-outs is not stopping during the lockdowns.

Therefore, this is a hack-job and no matter where you twist or turn. It is a questionable act. As it cannot be measured or even processed. There is so much you can doubt and the state is never prepared. Just like it was never prepared or had the systems in order for the food deliveries in the first lockdown last year.

The idea itself of a voucher and a cash-check to the citizens during a lockdown isn’t dumb. However, the set-up and the premise, which the state delivers is foolish. It is so bureaucratic. That parts of me wonders if they will find all the bouncers, the street-vendors and hawkers in time to drop the shillings to them. Before its to late and the bureaucrat is buying the New Vision from them again on the way to work.

For God and For Country. Well, for God and have mercy upon us. They don’t know what they do. Show us your grace and shelter us in need. Amen. Peace.

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