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The Importance of Mobile Money in Uganda

As the Telecommunication companies like MTN are praised the by the government, the National Resistance Movement have clearly let the economy become addicted and need of the services provided by the different Telecom’s and how the operate as village banks. The further proof of this comes when looking into a study and of the value of Mobile Money. This is done by all of the Cellphone providers in different names, but has the same outcome. Either by sending money to village funds, paying for utilities or even add airtime for a friend. The report conducted and made by Economy Policy Research Center at Makerere University we’re an interesting read. Here is the quotes worth assessing over. The historical backdrop of the vast amounts of trillions shillings in the operations. Shouldn’t surprise anyone, considering that one third of Ugandan citizens use the Mobile Money and average rate of monies sent during a month are 250,000. With the amount of people and amounts traded by Mobile Money, it is a booming business and first trying of banking. But doing it directly by the phone and not at the offices of Standard Charted or Barclays. Just take a look!

After 5 years of operation of mobile money services, the average adoption rate stands at 250,000 persons per month from inception (March 2009) to December 2015. The increase in access to formal financial services, from 28 percent in 2009 to 54 percent in 2013, was partially due to increased access to mobile money 1 See UBOS (2016), “National Population and Housing Census 2014”, Uganda Bureau of Statistics: Kampala services (EPRC 2013). Thirty-five percent of Ugandan adults have a registered mobile money account (Intermedia 2016). An additional 13 percent access services via somebody else’s account, including that of an agent. Mobile money account ownership surpasses the use of both banking and nonbanking financial institutions (Ibid)” (Makwejje & Lakuma, P: 6, 2017).

Finally, mobile money balances are sensitive to monetary policy shocks, while the mobile money values of transactions are not. These results suggest that 1) Mobile money has helped households to substitute liquid and other lumpy assets for financial assets; 2) Mobile money has modest macroeconomic impacts; 3) Mobile money has the potential to improve the effectiveness of the conduct of monetary policy. These results provide additional evidence for policy makers to continue supporting the growth of mobile money platforms. In particular, policy makers should provide the policy and regulatory framework through which mobile money balances can become interest-bearing assets. This will further strengthen the monetary policy transmission mechanism because economic agents will be able to more directly respond to changes in the policy rate” (Makwejje & Lakuma, P: 17-18, 2017).

The authorities clearly has to assess it and look over the Telecom’s Mobile Money operations, as this is important part of transactions and business operations in Uganda. When such vast amounts of people using it and benefits from it. Where their funds turn digital and get traded instead of having dozens of shillings in their pockets as for balance for their trades. Also, gives the ability to send over needed cash up-country or even to family members. Therefore, the structure and the balances of people’s lives can be monitored and shows the interest-bearing assets. The help it has provided the society and also introduce a form of banking institutions to the public. Though this study did not look into the fortunes made by this sort of transactions compared to ordinary banking practices in Uganda. Which, would be interesting expose considering difference of cost for the consumer and Ugandan doing so. Peace.

Reference:

Mawejje, Joseph & Lakuma, Paul C. – ‘MACROECONOMIC EFFECTS OF MOBILE MONEY IN UGANDA’ (June 2017) – Economic Policy Research Centre, Makerere University

The Uganda Chamber of Mines and Petroleum (UCMP) elects new board (11.07.2017)

Representative Waters tables bill (HR. 442) to inquire documentation of Trump businesses financial transactions to Russia!

In the House of Representative, one of the Representative Maxine Waters of California have introduced a new bill on the 13th July 2017. This one is an assault directly on the cash flow to the Trump Organization and it’s possible connection to the Russian businesses and associates. This becomes important, as the President and his business hasn’t been transparent. Therefore, this is another try to get the President and his family to deliver the connections and funds earned from foreign sources like the Russians. Especially, since the revelation and revealing companies that the Trump Organization has been working with.

The Representative in Congress has gotten Co-Sponsors on the bill, they are Daniel Kildee, Gwen Moore, Al Green and Ed Perlmutter, they are all Democrats, but set the standard for their persistence wish to find the truth and within reason for what is seem as just in the American society.

The important parts of the bill is this:

Of inquiry directing the Secretary of the Treasury to provide certain documents in the Secretary’s possession to the House of Representatives relating to President Trump’s financial connections to Russia, certain illegal financial schemes, and related information” (Waters, 2017).

(1) loans, guarantees, or other forms of credit, made or extended by Deutsche Bank AG, the Bayrock Group LLC, Vnesheconombank Group (VEB), Sberbank of Russia, Alfa Group, VTB Group, Gazprombank, any subsidiary or affiliate of the foregoing, the Russian government, or any Russian senior foreign political figure (as defined under section 1010.605 of title 31, Code of Federal Regulations), to

(A) President Trump;

(B) President Trump’s family members—

(i) Donald Trump Jr.;

(ii) Eric Trump;

(iii) Ivanka Trump;

(iv) Melania Trump;

(v) Tiffany Trump;

(vi) Jared Kushner; and

(vii) Seryl Stadtmauer (aka Seryl Kushner);

(C) President Trump’s associates—

(i) Paul Manafort;

(ii) Carl Icahn;

(iii) Felix Sater;

(iv) Gary Cohn;

(v) Carter Page;

(vi) Roger Stone;

(vii) Rick Gates;

(viii) Wilbur Ross;

(ix) Rex Tillerson;

(x) Michael Flynn;

(xi) Jeff Sessions;

(xii) Michael Cohen;

(xiii) Rhona Graff;

(xiv) Rob Goldstone;

(xv) Boris Epshteyn; and

(xvi) Michael Caputo;

(D) any Trump-owned, -branded, -licensed, or managed hotels, casinos, and golf courses, previously identified by the Department of the Treasury, including—

(i) the Trump Taj Mahal Associates, LLC, d/b/a Taj Mahal Casino Resort;

(ii) the Trump National Doral Miami; and

(iii) the Trump International Hotel, Washington, DC;

(E) any individual described in subparagraph (A), (B), or (C) in connection with—

(i) the property located at 666 5th Avenue, New York, NY; and

(ii) the property located at 229 West 43rd Street, New York, NY; and

(F) the Imperial Pacific International Holdings Ltd., or the Best Sunshine Live Casino;

(2) any financial accounts located outside of the United States and any individual described in subparagraph (A), (B), or (C) of paragraph (1);

(3) Deutsche Bank AG’s 2011 “mirror trading” scheme;

(4) the “Russian Laundromat” (also known as the “Global Laundromat” and the “Moldovan Scheme”);

(5) any money laundering violations involving individuals, businesses, or property described in subparagraphs (A) through (F) of paragraph (1);

(6) any violation of U.S. sanctions, the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act of 1977, or section 953 of title 18, United States Code (commonly known as the “Logan Act”), by any person or entity described in subparagraphs (A) through (D) of paragraph (1);

(7) any “business rule” developed by the FinCEN to screen data under section 21 of the Federal Deposit Insurance Act, chapter 2 of title I of Public Law 91–508, or subchapter II of chapter 53 of title 31, United States Code (collectively, commonly known as the “Bank Secrecy Act”), to identify financial transactions involving Russian senior foreign political figures, or any individual described in subparagraph (A), (B), or (C) of paragraph (1); and

(8) any Egmont Group requests made to a foreign Financial Intelligence Unit, including Cyprus’ Financial Intelligence Unit, the Unit for Combating Money Laundering (MOKAS), pertaining to the financial transactions of any individual described in subparagraph (A), (B), or (C) of paragraph (1)” (Waters, 2017)

In our time, there are enough questions to the ethical behavior on the New York Gang, which in implied in the current administration of running both the United States Government and the Trump Administration. This all puts all the dots together. If the New York Gang needs funding and gets it through agreements and deals done with Russians, clearly they will collude with them when they get into power. Like its seemingly has done and there are more than enough banks, transactions and unrevealed trades that has to surface to make the unanswered questions gone away. The President and his men are now in hot water. All of the fiscal and financial business together with all of this Russian operatives really proves the possible connections. That long before the Trump Campaign and other political aspirations. Even if he tried to run in the past as well.

It is time for the New York Gang to be transparent and open up. If not with time it will get ugly and the revealed truth will never disappear as long there are unanswered questions. Especially, since the President and his affiliates never reveal their true value or company profits. Therefore, the need for oversight and look into the businesses owned by him. They are still run by the family and within his reach. So he will know what Donald Trump Jr., Eric Trump and other leaders of the Organization are up-to. To think otherwise is foolish. Peace.

Reference:

Waters, Maxine – ‘H.Res.442 – Of inquiry directing the Secretary of the Treasury to provide certain documents in the Secretary’s possession to the House of Representatives relating to President Trump’s financial connections to Russia, certain illegal financial schemes, and related information’ (13.07.2017) link: https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-resolution/442/text?q=%7B%22search%22%3A%5B%22Russia%22%5D%7D&r=1

Uganda Communication Commission letter to MTN on “MTN Voice and Data Prices Changes” (07.07.2017)

Nakumatt: Internal E-Mail to Langata Hyper, Uchumi (01.07.2017)

Statement by Knight Frank Uganda on Nakumatt Stores Closures at Acacia Mall, Village Mall and Victoria Mall (01.07.2017)

Nakumatt: Internal Memo – to all Employees – “Re: Payment of Salaries” (30.06.2017)

Kenya: CBK Press Release granting license to Mayfair Bank Limited (23.06.2017)

A New Report finds that the Tories and EU are “in deep water” concerning the implementing the Brexit and at the same time honoring the Good Friday Agreement!

There are enough troubles over the seas and between the British Islands. It isn’t enough that a Northern Irish political party is forming a coalition with the Conservative Party. The Tories and Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) that is enough for breaking the impartiality in the devolution and following the Good Friday Agreement alone. But there are other parts of the Belfast Agreement or Good Friday Agreement that get touched in the possible break-up between the European Union and United Kingdom, which has the Northern Ireland as part of it. Therefore, the released report from House of the Oireachtas is important. What the reports point at is all the aspects that will affect the Northern Ireland and their citizens. As well, as the promised possibilities of movement of people and goods between Northern Ireland and Ireland. The Republic of Ireland and United Kingdom is jointly part of the Good Friday, they both have responsibilities towards the peace process and the devolution in Northern Ireland.

But to not put word in the mouth of the report. The issues it address, it does well on it is own!

For Strand 1 (Assembly and Executive), the question arises of whether powers held now at EU level will be devolved unchanged to the Assembly if the UK passes a ‘Great Repeal Bill’ intended to repatriate powers from the EU to the UK. Should it be decided to first change and then devolve these powers (e.g. in relation to employment rights or environmental standards), it is possible that there would be implications for the rights guaranteed by the Good Friday Agreement” (…) “For Strand 2 (North-South cooperation) it has been noted that the limited scope of the North South Ministerial Council (NSMC) and North-South implementation bodies means that much of their focus at present centres on EU-related work, for example management of EU funding and coordination on compliance with EU regulations. If Brexit means there is no longer an EU focus to Strand 2 the question arises as to how to ensure this Strand remains meaningful. It has been suggested that Strand 2 might provide a mechanism for enhanced North-South cooperation in the event of Brexit” (Houses of the Oireachtas, P: 11, 2017).

In total, since its inception 21 years ago the PEACE programme has provided over €2.2bn for important reconciliation work in Northern Ireland and the Irish border region, and INTERREG, since its inception 25 years ago, has provided over €1.1bn to encourage cross border cooperation in job creation and infrastructure development in Ireland, Northern Ireland and Western Scotland” (Houses of the Oireachtas, P: 23, 2017). “One of the main concerns expressed by many witnesses is the future of PEACE and INTERREG when the current programmes finish in 2020. The Committee notes and welcomes the UK Government’s commitment to guarantee EU funding until the end of 2020 but the uncertainty after that period is deeply worrying” (Houses of the Oireachtas, P: 24, 2017).

Now, more than ever before in the face of such political and economic uncertainty and instability in Northern Ireland, the importance of programmes that address issues such as intercommunity conflict, reconciliation, cross border cooperation and relationships, the development of infrastructure and jobs, needs to be recognised and these programmes protected. The Committee urges the Government to ensure the matter of EU funding for Northern Ireland and the border region remains high on the agenda and an expeditious solution is found for successor programmes after 2020” (Houses of the Oireachtas, P: 26, 2017).

The statements of the UK Government and the European Union acknowledging the importance of not returning to a hard border are welcome. Yet the uncertainty around what arrangements will be put in place and how these might affect trade flows, businesses with branches on both sides, movement of people living on one side and working in another is already taking a heavy toll. Brexit has also sharpened the focus on the immense gains of an invisible border, gains that for many had been heretofore taken for granted and underestimated but that are now keenly appreciated as their existence becomes threatened. These include economic gains (see the unemployment statistics below), as well as social, cultural and most importantly psychological gains” (Houses of the Oireachtas, P: 27, 2017).


“This weakness is likely to be compounded by Brexit with an expected reduction in cross border trade and economic cooperation, loss of FDI and loss of EU economic development funding. Northern Ireland’s anticipated 12.5% corporation tax rate was expected to boost inward investment however this was largely predicated on continued EU membership and access to the single market. The Committee further heard that the Brexit vote had already brought a considerable degree of uncertainty which is negatively impacting businesses and SMEs and is likely to remain for years. Businesses are less likely to invest in an unstable climate and Brexit is already creating barriers to the efficient conduct of business. Smaller businesses (SMEs) dependent on exports to Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK are being particularly badly hit” (Houses of the Oireachtas, P: 28, 2017).

The Common Travel Area predates Irish and British EU membership. It allows for free movement of Irish and British citizens between the islands of Ireland and Great Britain and guarantees the rights of Irish and British citizens to live and work in each other’s jurisdictions. However, there is no precedent for its operation with one State inside the EU and the other outside it” (Houses of the Oireachtas, P: 30, 2017).

The Committee acknowledges that much progress has been made but there remains a long way to go in addressing many outstanding legacy issues, dealing with ongoing justice and security matters and breaking down barriers and divisions between communities, both at a psycho-social level and in terms of access to services. Northern Ireland still faces enduring challenges of building and restoring inter-community harmony and addressing the legacy of its troubled history. It should be noted that the issue of sectarianism remains a significant problem in Northern Ireland. According to Cooperation Ireland, 95% of social housing in Northern Ireland is segregated; just 5% of children go to integrated schools. There were 18 so-called “peace walls” before the Good Friday Agreement, but there were 88 of them in 2008 – an incredible 70 additional walls erected since the Good Friday Agreement” (Houses of the Oireachtas, P: 34, 2017).

The Good Friday Agreement, in effect, provided equal identity to all. Many have availed of their right to hold an Irish passport. This gives rise to the unprecedented situation in which several hundred thousand Irish citizens, resident in Northern Ireland, will, overnight, and in most cases against their will, find themselves outside the European Union. As noted by Cooperation Ireland, “leaving the EU could raise issues of identity in ways that none of us can yet see.” (…) “Dr Morrow further cautioned that “unilateralism in the context of the Good Friday Agreement and uncertainty are both really serious and significant issues, all of which have potentially very major knock-on effects in a context of fragility.” (Houses of the Oireachtas, P: 35, 2017).

Brexit must not be a distraction from the important work of reconciliation, the full implementation of the Good Friday Agreement, addressing legacy issues and building cooperation. Northern Ireland’s concerns for stability and a continuing and seamless expression of Irish citizenship and identity require a unique answer and focus. We cannot see restrictions on movement of people again. Brexit is already having a psychological impact. It is absolutely essential to ensure there is no diminution or unravelling of the still fragile peace process. Dialogue must be encouraged at all times, between all parties and stakeholders within Northern Ireland, and on an all island basis” (House of the Oireachtas, P: 36, 2017).

Clearly, the Brexit implicates the Northern Irish very much not only the impartiality of the Tories government with a DUP infused powered cabinet. The Tories have to make sure the Good Friday Agreement are respected as part of the negotiations in the Brexit agreements. Therefore, the movement of Northern Irish together with a soft border between the Republic and the Northern Ireland is important. As both states United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland has stakes in Northern Ireland. The citizenship and devolution has to work together with becoming independent from the European Union. That is a hard bargain. The dialogue between the parties in Northern Ireland and the Tories government.

We can just see how the much all parties will respect the Good Friday Agreement, if the United Kingdom or the European Union together with their Member State Republic of Ireland want’s to honor the Northern Irish constituents. Certainly, the negotiations are just starting as the Brexit time table is only beginning for the Tories and their team. However, the Good Friday Agreement and the implications should be well-known for the United Kingdom and European Union. Therefore, to respect the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland, should be very important, so that the state of affairs and the peaceful progress of the Belfast Agreement can implemented and also create a sustainable peace. There are enough stirring waters already, doesn’t need questionable behavior from London to make it worse. But that is only what time would tell. Clearly, the Tories government has to either sink or swim, but no matter what their feet will get wet. Peace.

Reference:

Houses of the Oireachtas – ‘Joint Committee on the Implementation of the Good Friday Agreement – The Implications of Brexit for the Good Friday Agreement: Key Findings’ (June 2017).

CS Bett blames consumption of UNGA for the UNGA Crisis!

Certainly, one of these days the Jubilee government Cabinet Secretaries going to wake-up from their sleep and start to act with common sense. Since the release of subsidized maize and opening imports, the markets has not overflowed with Unga. Neither, the reality that some of the millers kept stockpiles of it, as they knew they would be subsidized from the state. So why sell it months ahead, when you can keep it steady and unleash when you get double bonus. The Jubilee government knows this and therefore right on the day of the subsidized maize and the possible export provisions came into effects. Boats with foreign maize came pouring in through the ports of Mombasa.

“He witnessed the arrival of 12,000 bags through the Rift Valley Railways yesterday. “To ensure every Kenyan enjoys the Sh90 subsidised maize flour, all maize from Mombasa will be removed using SGR, RVR and trucks,” Bett said. In two weeks, the market has been experiencing a shortage of unga. “Since we started the subsidised programme, we have witnessed more Kenyans preferring unga, thus the high demand for maize flour,” he said” (Ngotho, 2017).

CS Willy Bett, need some guidance, needs some reassurance and some sort of stiff upper-lips for insulting fellow citizens. It isn’t the sudden love for UNGA. This the staple food. This is what Kenyans are known to eat. UNGA, Ugali or Posho (Ugandan I know). Still, the maize flour meals is not a well-kept hidden secret. It would be like taking potatoes as out of the equation when feeding massive parts of Northern Europe. That is just the staple food. Period.

The CS clearly, has some internal issues and need to stop thinking he can deceive fellow citizens. As the indicated exports combined with the stockpiling was very evident. That people are buying lots of it now, is because they might even fear for more scarcity. Since it isn’t only drought, but man-made problems that has given way to shortage of UNGA.

It is time to wake-up for Mr. Bett and smell the UNGA. Time to see and relieve his fellow brothers and sisters. Not just find excuses upon excuses and think it can save his grace. You do not take away some-ones staple and think you can get away with it. Seriously, that is insulting. The insinuation and undermining of the needs and the will of Kenyans. Are evident in his approach to the UNGA crisis. This should not be forgotten, because his grace has clearly not done his job and then blames the citizens for either their staple food! Peace.

Reference:

Ngotho, Agatha – ‘Kenyans eating more ugali to blame for unga shortage – CS’ (20.06.2017) link: http://www.the-star.co.ke/news/2017/06/20/kenyans-eating-more-ugali-to-blame-for-unga-shortage-cs_c1582605?platform=hootsuite

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