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Archive for the tag “Defence Minister Crispus Kiyonga”

Mzee complains today about waste, however he haven’t rehabilitated sugar industry or revamped pharmaceutical industry either!

“In this regard, we need to learn and apply lessons from emerging economies such as India, whose total healthcare industry revenue is expected to increase from US$ 110 billion in 2016 to US$ 372 billion in 2022 in response to deliberate investments in telemedicine, manufacturing of medicines and health technologies, medical tourism, health workforce training and risk pooling/health insurance, among others. In order to achieve this, we need to plan in a harmonized way. In Uganda, for instance, we, indeed, have a nascent pharmaceutical industry producing Aids/HIV, Malaria, Hepatitis-B, pharmaceuticals, etc. drugs. These are, however, still using imported pharmaceutical grade starch and imported pharmaceutical grade sugar. The pharmaceutical grade starch and sugar are crucial for making tablets and syrups for children’s medicines. Yet, the starch is from maize and cassava and the pharmaceutical grade sugar is from sugar. I am told the drugs would be 20% cheaper. Moreover, apart from helping in the pharmaceutical industry, more refined sugar is also needed in the soft drinks industry. Uganda is squandering US$34 million per year importing refined sugar for the soft drinks, about US$ 20 million for importing the pharmaceutical grade starches not including the other raw materials, US$ 77million for taking patients to India etc. Africa is incredibly rich but wasteful” (Yoweri Kaguta Museveni at THE OFFICIAL OPENING OF THE JOINT EAC HEADS OF STATE RETREAT ON INFRASTRUCTURE AND HEALTH FINANCING AND DEVELOPMENT, 22.02.2018).

Seems like the 1980s World Bank loans to restart Kakira Sugar Works hasn’t done enough, since the Ugandan state did right after the National Resistance Army takeover of the state. They went into an arrangement with the World Bank getting loans for the company, to restart. That deal was done 8th March 1988. As the documents said back in 198:

“Uganda currently imports US$15-20 million worth of sugar annually, which ranks second only to petroleum imports. Import substitution through restoration of domestic production capacity is therefore a high priority and eminently justified given the considerable comparative advantage Uganda enjoys as a result of its landlocked situation. Conditions for sugar production at Kakira are highly favorable. Cane growing benefits from excellent soils, good rainfall distribution (requiring only limited sunplementary irrigation) and relatively low levels of inputs of fertilizers and pesticides. The project brings back to the Kakira complex the original owners who have a demonstrated ability to manage sugar operations at Kakira and elsewhere” (SUGAR REHABILITATION PROJECT, 08.03.1988).

Therefore, what the President said today, the Sugar Rehabilitation Project, which was done to stop the heavy imports of sugar and for consumption, has clearly not worked as projected. Since his own state is squandering their resources and not even following the loans to make the project work. That is my take on it. The president of 32 years has clearly mismanaged this and not finished his job. Since he hasn’t been able to rehabilitate the industry.

When it comes to pharmaceutical industry there massive challenges, not just the sugar starch for medicine coverage of the pills. Nevertheless, the whole arrangement, since the technology to operate these machines are imported, as well is the parts. Not only the sugar starch, but also the ingredients are imported too, than you have few companies who has automated manufactures, which makes hard to make medicine on a larger scale. It is also high operation cost, because of use of back-up generators because of blackouts and shortfall of electricity. Because of this, it is expensive to have cold storage of the medicine and have a storage for the final products.

So the Idea from Museveni that it is simple, it is the whole system around it, that makes it more profitable to import ready made medicine, than actually produce it. Even if the added value of production would be there, but with the circumstances put by United Nations Industrial Development Organization, seemingly it is from 2009. However, the state of affairs hasn’t changed that much.

We can really estimate, that the adjustment and the needed organization to pull forward both industries during the years of NRM hasn’t been totally fruitful. If so, why would he complain about the imports of sugar and medicine, when he hasn’t been able to make it function with his 32 years of reign? Someone who has 3 decades, should have the ability and time to find the information, finalize plans and execute as seen fit. That is if he cared about the industries in question and their possible engines for growth and riches of Africa. Nevertheless, he hasn’t cared and haven’t used the time wisely. He has used the time bitching and not acting. That is just the way things is and it isn’t becoming better either.

He could have made sure that the pharmaceutical industry had energy, had the sufficient organization behind it to make the medicine, not only import and assemble certain medicine, he could have made sure the sugar industry was profitable and had the equipment to make the refined sugar used in the pharmaceutical industry. However, both is a lost cause, because it takes money and time. Both, is something he doesn’t have, since the narrative isn’t making him wealthy.

Alas, he we are at the status quo, with a President running for life and complaining about waste. When he has wasted 32 years and not made effort to change it. It is all talk and no fire. Peace.

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Looking into the inflation of 1987 as the Sugar prices are rising in today’s Uganda!

We have had a wonderful collaboration with IMF since 1987. We have managed to control inflation. By controlling inflation, we have succeeded in preserving the people’s earnings” – Yoweri Kaguta Museveni (State House, 2017).

Well, there been many who has set similarities with the inflation and price shocks of the year 1987. The Republic of Uganda has been through their mess before. The government of Uganda and the National Resistance Movement/Army (NRM/A) had just taken power in 1986. This was a year after the coup d‘etat, which brought the NRA into power. President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni in collaboration with International Monetary Fund (IMF), which had agreements and Structural Adjustment Program (SAP), which promoted deregulation and less state control of the economy. This was also put forward to settle inflation and the deficit that the state had.

So, because some has put similarities between 1987 and 2017, as the prices has gone from about 3,000 Uganda Shillings (UGX) in 2016 and 7,000 Uganda Shillings (UGX) in 2017. There is clearly that there was problems in 1987, but whole another level. The Sugar Industry wasn’t established, the economy of Uganda needed export of coffee and this was the sole benefit of foreign currency into the economy.

Inflation in Uganda is running as high as 200 percent, and low prices to farmers serve as a disincentive to agricultural production in a country of rich soil and mild equatorial climate” (…) “At the center of the debate is the issue of devaluation. In its first year in office, the Government revalued the currency from 5,000 to 1,400 shillings to the dollar, saying that the move would make imports cheaper. But exports have become increasingly expensive. Devaluation Debated. Some hard-line nationalists in Government insist that the cost of devaluation would be devastating. The cost of such imports as sugar, cooking oil and soap would increase significantly, they say, making the average Ugandan even worse off than he is now” (Rule, 1987).

In 1987 the Uganda shilling was demonetizated during the currency reform and a currency conversion tax at a rate of 30% was imposed to further reduce excessive liquidity in the economy. There was an immediate drop in average inflation from 360.7% in May to about 200% cent in June. However, with the possible fears of complex and drastic currency reform, the premium shot up, representing essentially a portfolio shift to foreign currency, and possible capital flight, and suppressed inflation. The intended aim of the conversion tax, apart from reducing excessive liquidity, was to lend money raised through this tax to the government. This was to finance the budget deficit over a short period, rather than financing it through printing more money. Nonetheless, inflation shot up again within three months mainly due to renewed monetary financing of increased government expenditure, domestic credit expansion by commercial banks to meet coffee financing requirements and financing of the newly launched rural farmers scheme” (Barungi, P: 10-11, 1997)

Prices for sugar and vegetable oil (both imported goods) increased rapidly in the early part of the year, falling between May and August — replicating the pattern of the premium between the parallel and the official exchange rate. The subsequent fall in sugar prices and stability of cooking oil prices were due to greater official imports. Inflationary pressures on food prices have been aggravated by supply shortages on account of severe transportation problems” (World Bank; P: 36, 1988).

In October 1986, Mulema was replaced by Dr. Crispus Kiyonga, who has a medical background Kiyonga has a difficult task. The government’s finances are shaky at best. In an attempt to enable Ugandan citizens to purchase imported consumer goods, the government fixes their prices below world prices. This, of course, puts considerable pressure on the government’s finances: for example, in July 1986 the government imported $4.8 million worth of sugar to sell at subsidized prices” (Warnock & Conway, 1999).

Perspective from Kakensa: “Today sugar costs 7000/- per kilo. When Museveni came to power in 1986 each kilo was at 4/-(four shillings). Immediately he came to power he said Ugandan shilling had lost value, in 1987 all money was changed, not only changed but two zeros were cut off to give it value on addition to the 30% levied on each shilling. This means on every 100 shillings, you got 70cents. Those who had 100,000/- got 700/-” (Kakensa Media, 12.05.2017).

We can see there was certain aspects, but the sugar industry now is different. The Sugar factories are now real and the business are now in full affect. While, in 1987 the state needed coffee exports to get funding and foreign currency. The sugar was imported and was put on fixed prices. The inflation back then was because of the crashing economy after the bush-war and the effects of it. The Sugar prices now are rising for different reasons. These reasons are the yields of sugar-cane, the hoarding of sugar and the export of surplus sugar. Also, the production of ethanol and bio-fuel. That was not the situation and context in the past.

Still, history is repeating itself, since the NRM, let the prices run as crazy in the past. The price has gone up a 100% in a years time. Which, means the prices who doubled from 3000 to 7000 Uganda Shillings. This is not a stable and the ones who get hurt is the consumer and Ugandan citizens. Peace.

Reference:

Barungi, Barbara Mbire – ‘EXCHANGE RATE POLICY AND INFLATION: THE CASE OF UGANDA’ (March 1997).

Rule, Sheila – ‘UGANDA, AT PEACE, IS FACING ECONOMIC BATTLES’ (28.01.2017) link:http://www.nytimes.com/1987/01/28/world/uganda-at-peace-is-facing-economic-battles.html

State House Uganda – ‘President commends Uganda – IMF collaboration since 1987’ (27.01.2017) link: http://statehouse.go.ug/media/news/2017/01/27/president-commends-uganda-%E2%80%93-imf-collaboration-1987

Warnock, Frank & Conway, Patrick – ‘Post-Conflict Recovery in Uganda’ (1999)

World Bank – ‘Report No. 7439-UG: Uganda – Towards Stabilization and Economic Recovery’ (29.09.1988)

Remarks on Burundi by Farhan Haq, the Deputy Spokesman for the UN Secretary-General (26.05.2016)

Burundi Violence

NEW YORK, United States of America, May 25, 2016Special Adviser Jamal Benomar is traveling to Bujumbura today following the conclusion of talks on Burundi that took place in Arusha, Tanzania.

The Special Adviser hopes that the talks in Arusha were a first step towards genuine and inclusive dialogue. He welcomed the meetings and stressed the undeniable challenge of starting a viable political process. He urged all of those involved to work diligently in order for that to happen as soon as possible.

Mr. Benomar has been consulting with various stakeholders who attended the talks and will continue to reach out to and consult with others who did not attend.  During his visit to Arusha, he reiterated to former President Benjamin Mkapa that he and his team are ready to assist and support the facilitator in moving the process forward.”

Uganda People’s Defense Force training with help of US Marines (Youtube-Clip)

“Uganda People’s Defense Force soldiers conducted explosive breaching and demolition familiarization range training with help of US Marines. The Uganda People’s Defence Force (UPDF), previously the National Resistance Army, is the armed forces of Uganda. From 2007 to 2011, the International Institute for Strategic Studies has estimated the UPDF has a total strength of 40,000–45,000, and consists of Land Forces and an Air Wing.[5]” (…)”After Uganda achieved independence in October 1962, British officers retained most high-level military commands. Ugandans in the rank and file claimed this policy blocked promotions and kept their salaries disproportionately low. These complaints eventually destabilized the armed forces, already weakened by ethnic divisions. Each post-independence regime expanded the size of the army, usually by recruiting from among people of one region or ethnic group, and each government employed military force to subdue political unrest” (Military Zone, 2016).

The Battle for the Ugandan oil to the Coast; As the Tanzanian and the Kenyan suitors try to bait Mzee

Oil-pipeline

There is the time and day where the President Museveni walks into Tanzania speaks to the new President Magefuli and promise more money for sustainable pipeline through Tanzania down to the coast. Later in the month he travels to Nairobi and meet President Kenyatta, and promises to ship the oil in pipelines through Kenya down to the Coast.

As both Big-Men do their bidding and promises quality lines in safe pastures with clean operations and good relationship between the countries and their businesses. While Tanzania was first in this time around, the Kenyan counterparts would not be worse.

The Ugandan Government have gone back-and-fourth promised Kenyan government before and made plans fitting the Kenyan perspective, so early in March after the general Election, the President met with President Magufuli seemed to be a grand deal, as the Tanzanian said they could start with building as early as August 2016 if the Ugandan Gov. was ready for it.

Tanzania-Uganda-Pipeline_0

Now today it seemed as the Ugandan government have gone away from the Tanzanian agreement from early in month. As the Bunyoro oil fields will build pipelines from there down to Kenyan coast. A gentleman’s agreement between Uhuru and Yoweri, as they have worked together during election time, with funds and that President Museveni wants to give something back and show loyalty to the Kenyan President.

Tanzania and Uganda had even signed a framework agreement for the crude pipeline on the 12th of October in 2015. That seemed just to be a plan and not official document as the President of Uganda, seem now to be keen to repay his fellow mate in Kenya.

We never know is if this an reaction the EAC Inter-Burundian Dialogue of Peace between the Burundian stakeholders where President Museveni has lost his position as the opposition in Burundi claimed he was biased towards President Nkurunziza and wanted somebody else, as the African Union and EAC let former Tanzanian President Mpaka take the key role, as the mediation will be led by him, not the Ugandan President. That must sting a bit to man who wants to be the grand King of East Africa and overrule all estates and areas at all cost. That might be why they scrapped the agreement with Tanzania when it comes to the Pipeline.

hoima-e28093-lokichar-e28093-lamu-route

This here will be proof of who wants to be the cadre for the monies that Ugandan President could bring and how far they will go to eat from his hands. As the President plays the field on both home-grounds and hope to gain the most for himself for as little as possible, while serving loyalty to the ones he picks. The partly agreement that was written during last quarter of 2015 seems too premature, as the joint statement today assume that the Kenyan government takes the last straw. Especially with the knowledge of the funding of President Museveni campaign parts of those funds to his war-chest came from the mountains of Kenya and not from Tanzania.

Because a man like President Museveni is more about his own will than the best for the oil or the best for the companies involved, because he want to be sure that the decision is benefitting him and his loyal cadres. Not anybody else, therefore he plays with Tanzanian and Kenyan officials until he gets the best deal for him, even if that strands the already made agreement with Tanzania, as the Kenyan suitors want to make sure that he gets the sugar and the tea he needs to sign a joint deal with them, even keep the Migingo island, as the money from pipeline can bring wealth and create jobs in Kenya, more than a few fishes and stones in the middle of lake. Peace.   

Press Release: Communique of the 581st PSC meeting on the situation in Burundi (15.03.2016)

burundi-grenade-attack_240x180_41434797424

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, March 15, 2016 The Peace and Security Council of the African Union (AU), at its 581st meeting, held on 9 March 2016, adopted the following decision on the situation in Burundi:

Council,

1. Takes note of the briefing made by the Commissioner for Peace and Security on the visit of the AU High Level Delegation to Burundi and on the evolution of the situation in that country. Council also takes note of the statements made by the representatives of Burundi, as well as by Tanzania in its capacity the current Chair of the East African Community (EAC);

2. Recalls its previous communiqués and press statements on the situation in Burundi, as well as press releases made by the Chairperson of the Commission. Council further recalls the decision taken by the 26th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the Union, held on 30 and 31 January 2016 and reaffirms the responsibilities of the AU, in its capacity as Guarantor of the 2000 Arusha Agreement for Peace and Reconciliation in Burundi. Council stresses its determination to fully play its role and take all necessary measures for the promotion of peace, security and stability in Burundi, in conformity with its mandate, as stipulated in the Protocol Relating to the Establishment of the Peace and Security Council of the AU;

3. Welcomes the visit to Burundi, on 25 and 26 February 2016, by the AU High-level Delegation, established pursuant to the relevant provisions of the above-mentioned decision of the Assembly of the Union. Council pays tribute to the Presidents of South Africa, Gabon, Mauritania and Senegal, as well as to the Prime Minister of Ethiopia for their contribution to the efforts of the AU for peace, security and stability in Burundi. Council emphasises that their work is an exemplary contribution to African ownership and resolution of the problems of the continent;

Burundi-Museveni-Nkurunziza

4. Endorses the conclusions of the visit of the AU High Level Delegation to Burundi, as contained in the Communiqué issued at the end of the mission. Council welcomes, in particular, the consent of the Burundian authorities to increase to two hundred (200) the number of Human Rights Observers (100) and Military Experts (100) and requests the Commission to expedite the process of their deployment in Burundi. Council also notes with satisfaction the readiness of the members of the AU High Level Delegation to pursue their efforts, in support of the mediation efforts led by President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda, on behalf of the EAC, particularly with regard to the need to ensure that all stakeholders in Burundi participate in the Inclusive Dialogue and actively preserve the gains of the Arusha Agreement;

5. Commends the Burundian authorities for the measures taken to restore respect for human rights, preservation of civic liberties and freedom of the press. In this respect, Council urges the authorities to enhance and consolidate these efforts;

6. Urges the EAC, in particular, and countries of the region to accelerate the mediation efforts to find a lasting solution to the crisis in Burundi. In this regard, Council reiterates the full support of the AU to the EAC efforts for the Inter-Burundian Inclusive Dialogue process, led by President Yoweri Museveni, the EAC-appointed Mediator and notes with satisfaction the appointment of former President Benjamin Mkapa of Tanzania as Facilitator and member of the mediation team. Council reiterates its full support to the Mediator and the Facilitator in the Burundi crisis and requests them to expedite consultations with all the Burundian stakeholders in order to fix, as early as possible, a date for the resumption of the Inter-Burundian Inclusive Dialogue;

7. Reiterates its urgent appeal to all the Burundian stakeholders to exercise maximum restraint and to lend all necessary cooperation to the efforts of the Mediator and the Facilitator;

8. Welcomes the recent visit, by the Secretary-General of the United Nations to Burundi, which falls within the framework of international efforts to further strengthen those led by Africa with a view to finding a lasting solution to the crisis in the country;

9. Reiterates its appreciation to the neighbouring countries which are hosting Burundian refugees, as well as its call to the international community to continue and intensify its humanitarian assistance to the affected population and the host countries;

10. Decides to remain actively seized of the matter.

Charles Rwomushana Speaks Out on Burundi Unrests (Youtube-Clip)

“Rwomushana says there is still a long way to resolve the problem of Burundi” (NBS TV Uganda, 2015).

EU Letter to H.E. Yoweri Museveni on Inter-Burundian Dialogue (14.12.2015)

EU Burundi Uganda Letter

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