MinBane

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Archive for the tag “10th Parliament”

The Hoes of 2015 comes to haunt the NRM in 2021!

The distribution of hoes to the communities as promised by President Museveni has divided members of Parliament with sections of the legislators saying it will cost them votes in 2021” (NBS Television 18.10.2019).

On the 20th November 2015 before the General Election and within the campaign period, the President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni ordered the Prime Minister and his office to purchase 18 million hoes to 6 million households. With the estimate of 44,700,000 population in the republic and the Uganda Bureau of Statistics Household Survey of 2016/17 said the average amount of people a household was about 5. This means statistically, that there are about 8,940,000 households. This is mere numbers and not the whole package, but it gives you feeling of how many.

Therefore, when the MPs are complaining, the OPM have surely not bought all the promised 18 million hoes. Because, that mean most of them would have been covered, just nearly 3 million household without any. However, there must be short-fall in the amount, as the state cannot deliver to enough regions or district to matter. That is why the MPs are afraid of this.

I can ask like Jajja did in November 2015: “What happened?”.

Because, that this story continues to haunt us in 2019. On the stages and preparations for rallies in 2020 for the General Election in 2021. Surely, this is pure fiction, but sadly our reality. As the Devine powers doesn’t want things to work or succeed. It is a repetition of the mediocre and lazy, lackluster approach to governing. Which is staple with the National Resistance Movement. The party that promise middle-income status and steady progress. But cannot even drop some promised tool on the population.

Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda has had 4 years to deliver 18 millions hoes and still hasn’t finished the task. There been four budgets and four planning stages. Still, it seems like it needs a fifth to get to the finish line. Even with this, there will not hoes for every household nor all families who needs them. As the statistics are not counting the ones living single, the one who has their left the nest and so-on. Therefore, the statistics is lying a bit and just giving a feeling of the state of affairs.

The President and PM has failed. They can come with arguments, but we should ask them: “What Happened?”. Peace.

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Opinion: Muntu’s mellow approach to end Musevenism…

Once upon a time, there was a bush-war NRA who became an opposition. Who went from having aspirations of being an journalists to become a full-time engaging opposition. However, in his quest to uproot the master he helped putting into power. He has never significantly been able to address to how to change this.

Even to this day, Maj. Gen. Mugisha Muntu, the former Party President of Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) and now Coordinator of Alliance for National Transformation (ANT) seems like a lost puppy on quest to nowhere. Before I continue. Let me take a snippet of yesterday’s speech from the man.

Ugandans could take to the streets one day and eventually drive Gen. Yoweri Museveni from power or he could fail to rig the next election and be gone. Unfortunately all of the problems that Uganda is enduring today will remain with us the day after Museveni is out of office. The most intractable problem is the lack of political engagement at the grassroots. That is why dictatorships have flourished, leading to political violence, deaths, corruption and economic destruction. There has never been a peaceful handover of power from one president to the next one in Uganda in our 57 years of independence. Yet the right of citizens to determine who governs them is a fundamental and universal human right. Those who govern must obtain the consent of those on whose behalf they exercise political power” (Mugisha Muntu 11.10.2019).

I don’t know about you, but this sort of address fails the parameter of a real change. This is the soft approach and the reason why NRM has said they are open for a return of this man. Because, his manner and ways are so smooth, that you cannot fix it all.

It is true, the dynamics and the state apparatus will need time to be rebuilt and institutionalized in a manner, where the orders from above doesn’t control it all. However, the approach of Muntu is weak, bitterly so. Like he wants to await the final destination and said his education of the grassroots is the way to solve it all. Which is really an insincere approach, considering how the other parties has tried to educate and operate within the limited space the state has given them.

If there is a election with Museveni on the ballot, he will not fail in rigging it. That is what his been doing ever since 1996. Not kid ourselves, no one can conquer him on a ballot. As long as Yoweri breathes, no win will win in a contest. Even if the tides are turning and the state has no support other than the army. Still, he will not loose. Because of the fear of opposing Mr. Incumbent President.

Once people are truly empowered at the grassroots they will be the guarantors against future dictatorships. We do not believe in replacing guns with guns” (Muntu, 11.10.2019).

Therefore, if Muntu was sincere, he would promise more than civic education to over win the dictatorship. Because, he wants a soft teachings and lessons for the public. So, that they can deep into their mind know what is just and what is their right. However, they most likely know this already, as it is basic and understandably so. Nevertheless, when risking life or arrests for questioning the actions of the state, they rather stay silent; which I don’t blame them. Everyone is not built for getting in trouble.

Just like, Muntu knows he cannot preach defiance or resistance against the state. He cannot, because than he sounds like the ones he lost in the FDC. He needs to preach another gospel. Though, it falls short. Because, we all know that educating isn’t enough. Action is needed too, even though it costs.

I’ll end with wise words of Dr. Kizza Besigye: “I am very alive to the fact that: no freedom, no political changes, comes without a cost” (June 2011). Peace.

Bank of Uganda: Monetary Policy Statement for October 2019 (07.10.2019)

President Museveni letter to Hon. Monica Azuba Ntege – Ruling out external or internal borrowing for development infrastructure (18.09.2019)

Another look into the Oil-Road Cost: “Package 2” Hoima-Butiaba-Wanseko Road!

In the newest report of Oil Roads, which is expected to borrow funds for. The China Exim Bank is supposed to be provider of 85 % of the cost of the operation and building of the roads in these projects. I will only look into one of them, as I have previously looked at this significant one.

This is the Hoima-Butiaba-Wasenko Road. A project that was supposed to start in 2015 and was clocking in funds from the state budgets in 2017. Back in 2015, the road was estimated to cost $126m USD. Today, with the recent report, the same road is costing $179,538m USD. That is jump of nearly $50m in a five years time. In addition, of these bloated funds, 85 % of it will be loaned from China and the rest 15% covered by the Government of Uganda (GoU).

In 2017, this project was designated the China Communications Construction Company (CCCC), which signed a deal in January 2016. However, by the time of the report 2019, it is another Chinese Company who has the contract. This is Chongqing International Construction Corporation (CRC) Ltd. With the recent contract, the loans are clearly getting direct back to the Chinese, as their corporations are the ones with the contracts to build. A clever way of borrowing and then getting returns.

With this mind, we can see the changes, see over the years how the price has changed. If Members of Parliament was afraid of the price per kilometre in the past. They should be now. As the changes of price on the same project has changed significantly. There is no doubt, that the Chinese government are getting added loans on each of the packages in this deal. As this is just one of the roads in question.

This is 111km is now costing 659,921,964,460.17UGX in Ugandan terms or 659bn shillings and that equals to about 5,9bn shillings. Therefore, the prices has sky-rocketed and the price per kilometre is abnormal and extremely costly. The overpriced asphalt and the consultation is in absurd levels. The previosly estimated price for this road was about 444bn shillings. Therefore, we can see rising price between the years in both currencies. About 200bn shillings growth in 5 years. 

To many cooks and too few ingredients. They are boiling soup on nails on this one. Wonder how this will end. As I felt in 2017, that the pricing of this particular road was a bit too much, but now they have just escalated it.

We can wonder whose eating, but someone is. We just don’t know who, because there been designated funds to build this one in the past and it has still not commenced. Surely, this road will be built, but at what point. However, with the added loans, the pressure should be on. Also, to secure the oil so it makes financial sense too. That the added value is there. It got to be. Because this project is over the top. This is the real OTT service, paid for by the Chinese and the tab is all taken by the Ugandans. Peace.

Uganda: Thanksgiving Prayer in Honour of the Rt. Hon. Speaker of Parliament and the entire institution (13.09.2019)

Opinion: Tired of Muntu’s hypocrisy

Democracy is not just about the will of the majority being done. It is also about the voice of the minority being heard. The greatest lesson we need to learn as a country is to think of politics not as a means to win power, but an opportunity to serve our people.” – Gen. Mugisha Muntu

I have no grudges or anything personal against retired General Mugisha Muntu, the former Party President of Forum for Democratic Change (FDC), which now is both apart of Democratic Party Block and its Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) and has members in his leaders in the People Power Movement (PPM). Clearly his ways are spiralling for relevance into the upcoming General Elections in 2021.

Alas, there is the case, his not only playing two horses, with his pragmatic ways, while his always trying to shine with his words. Which he at some point does, but I find it bit dishonest. Knowing how the Alliance of National Transformation exists. ANT didn’t become a thing, because the Nation asked for it. ANT didn’t become a thing, because there was a need or an uprising like Action 4 Change (A4C) or anything.

No, it happened because the General lost to Patrick Amuriat Oboi and since then held consultation with the FDC and externally. Withheld and postpones the operative dates and rescheduled the start of party. The New Formation turned ANT.

I wish I didn’t feel this way, I know its politics. But when this man speaks of “country before self” and such. Plus speak of opportunity to serve, why couldn’t he serve on the sidelines of the FDC? What was the need, if he believed in change to be the king on top? Wasn’t it possible if he humiliated himself and swallowed his pride.

Instead, he jumped ship and creates his own, by also putting the stakes in every other avenue possible. Which seems to be finessing the whole situation. To find the bargain and get the best out of the DP Block and PPM. By any means, consolidate his position and strategically find relevance as new alternative.

In addition, speaking with the tongue of a poet, like a magician, as he has done so many times before. Muntu knows this and therefore his quotes are golden. They can demystify a person. However, his actions are speaking loud too. Since, his insincerity about serving, as long as his the top coordinator, the man in charge and head. Than its fine, but don’t ask him to play second fiddle. That is not acceptable.

Muntu doesn’t accept to be second place, even if it means country before self, or serving the country. He will only serve if he gets the first place. Not a narrow second. That is why he should trade waters more carefully. He might thinks his outsmarting people by his pragmatic ways. But his falling short on his service, on his record and on his own astute beliefs. Because if he really believed it. He wouldn’t have created ANT, but worked for it inside his old party.

Alas, he didn’t because he doesn’t want to serve, he wants to number one. Peace.

Opinion: Niwagaba MP Constitutional Amendments going for VP Ssekandi’s position, maybe because his irrelevant at this point?

Wilfred Niwagaba MP is really gunning for replacing Vice-President Edward Ssekandi and also repeal the Prime Minister post of Dr. Rukahana Rugunda. Clearly, the MP has ideas and want another sort of governance put into stone or to be amended into law. As the Constitution would stipulate certain Executive and higher offices in the Republic. Like it does today with the VP and the PM, which the President shall appoint with the approval of the Parliament.

Niwagaba Independent MP are clearly that his trying to send a message, that is why Muhammad Kivumbi Muwanga (Democratic Party) and Betty Ocan Aol (Forum for Democratic Change). They have co-signed on this motion for leave for Niwagaba to finish the private bill to the parliament.

This is really a joint opposition bill and really trying to change the government by changing the constitution. This bill is also planning to find a legal ways of cutting down the size of the cabinet, because of how it has mushroomed under this President. Therefore, this is really directly attacking the NRM model of governance.

But, I will be fixated with is not the slimming of the cabinet nor the idea of how the cabinet members are picked/appointed. I feel it is more enriching to discuss the changes from VP to DP and repeal the PM.

Just look at vital parts of the amendment of the VP role into a DP!

108. Deputy President,

(1)There shall be a Deputy President of Uganda.

(2)A candidate in a presidential election shall nominate a person who is

qualified for nomination for election as President, as a candidate for Deputy

President.

(…)

(14) The Deputy President shall-

(a) deputise for the President;

(b) be the Leader of Government Business in Parliament;

(c) be responsible for the coordination and implementation of Government

policies across Ministries , departments, and other public institutions

(d) perform such other functions as may be assigned to him or her by the

President, or as may be conferred on him or her this the Constitution.” (Constitutional (Amendment) 26th July 2019).

13. Repeal of article 108A of the Constitution.

Article l08A of the Constitution is repealed” (Constitutional (Amendment), 26th July 2019).

If you have followed the VP and his life, his the most ceremonial public office in the Republic. Seemingly, his the face of the patronage and the laxity, since the President handles everything with his micromanaging. That is why the VP is mostly a busy body and someone that greets the President at functions or even at the Entebbe International Airport.

Surely with two roles submerged into one in away, that is what it seems by this constitutional amendment. That the possible changes would be an amplified VP and PM into a DP.

I don’t know what big difference this will do, as this role would be less ceremonial, but have actual powers. Also, being the safe-guard for the President and the one in his place. However, this is could have all been amplified with the VP himself. Alas, the Prime Minister is the one of most importance, as well, as the biggest budget with the projects underlining the OPM. This is why the repealing of this role would also affect everything being connected with the OPM.

Ssekandi should really defend his value, his importance and his ways. The VP should defend himself with a VP drive, ask for supplementary budget and maybe got on a VP Drive across the Republic. So, that people can see his face, know that he exists and even shake his hand. No, I am kidding with that part, but he needs to show his face value. Because, what has the VP done, except smiling on pictures at selected functions over the recent years?

VP Ssekandi might be a powerful man in the placement of the political order, but in practical sense. It seems like the OPM kicks him to the curb. The VP seems like useless position at this time and place. That is because his not giving enough daily remindings that his alive and kicking it.

That is why the opposition MPs are trying to revise the law. To get someone who has a real function and who does something while serving for the state. Not only getting the brown envelopes and going to funerals as the state official. There is clear need for something more and especially not only having the President doing this. Peace.

Uganda: Fresh report states that the debt-service has grown 129% within one financial year!

 

The Republic of Uganda’s economy is really reeling, it cannot be sustainable as the Government of Uganda is growing their debt like there is no tomorrow. While the fiscal growth is substantially lower than their rate of debt-service. As the growth of debt combined with lacking growth to substantiate the shortfall.

In addition, with the knowledge of added expenses, growing shortfall of funds in the upcoming Financial Year of 2019/20 and the election year of FY 2020/21. There will be more add-ons on the need for debt service, as the state already had loans outstanding, which the grace period ends and the debt-service begins on. Therefore, the amount of loans will transpire even more, than what is in this report. The endless cycle of debt and growth of it, is worrying, as well, as the state thinks that the magical wand of oil-money will clear this debt. Even as the first operational oil field and such has been postponed yet again.

Just look!

“The total Government of Uganda external debt service by end of FY 2017/18 amounted to US$275.75 million, which was an increment of l29% compared to US$120.62 million in FY 2016/17” (…) “Debt service of Uganda’s external debt is on the rise and outstripping growth of the country’s income, currently at 6%. This poses risks for future debt repayments, especially as the country continues to acquire external debt at less concessional terms, especially to finance the oil development programme” (P: 6-7, 2019)

“It follows that as interest rates increase, the debt service obligations of Government also increases. The rise in external debt interest costs attests to the fact the government is increasingly contracting non-concessional debt, which will increase the repayment burden” (P: 24, 2019)

“However, this may not be the most likely scenario, as most projects have been discounted and some excluded in the macroeconomic framework. With the development of the NDP III, additional project and other pipeline project related to the oil developments and other infrastructure, will increase the financing requirement of government in the medium term. The inclusion of the above projects will re-classify Uganda from low risk of debt distress to moderate risk of debt distress or high risk if the export shocks materialize. A downgrade would have significant implications for the program with the IMF, where Uganda’s credit risk rating will worsen; implying that accessibility of nonconcessional financing will be limited. This will limit credit to Uganda to only concessional and grants financing.” (P: 28, 2019)

You don’t need to smart about it, as the state has bigger budgets with higher shortfall in the economy, combined with debt service and higher interest payments on the growing amount of loans. You know sooner or later, the economy will tank, as the fiscal responsibility is taken for granted and that fresh funds are lacking, because these are taken out of the economy to finance the payments of the old debts. Instead of generating growth and actually naturally grow the economy, by spending and investing as a state. The money is taken away to service debt, instead of building the state. That is what they are doing and at a alarming rate. Peace.

Reference:

NEC1-19 – ‘REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON NATIONAL ECONOMY ON THE STATE OF INDEBTEDNESS, GRANTS AND GUARANTEES’ June 2019, Parliament of Uganda

Uganda Peoples Congress: Caution on Coffee Bill (17.07.2019)

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