That the Northern Uganda have been in deep end of the stick in many eyes is evident, by how lax the state has been to take care of their needs and their rights. That can now be proven by the forceful evictions from land in Apaa Village in Amuru District/Adjumani District. Where the previously have been attempts to make a giant farm for an investor called Bruce Martin and also become sugar cane plantations and factory for Kakira Sugar Factory owned by the Madhvani Group, this goes all the way back to 2006. Therefore, the plans to evict these people has been slow process from the state.
Now in 2018, the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) have evicted dozens upon dozens of the local residents from their lands. As the purge on the village and the area continues, this has been in the making, but the ones losing their lands get nothing, but lose their homes and their livelihoods at the same time. The government authorities have torched the houses and left nothing behind, as they are continuing to evict people. Their lives are no meaningless, as they have to flee their land and are living on the United Nations Compound in Gulu, while awaiting their future, as the state, UWA and the Uganda People’s Defence Force have been evicting them over the last two months. Surely, the hurt is felt and real.
Who can wonder if the state is finalizing the agreement with Madhvani Group to deliver his second sugar factory and also sugar plantation in the area or they are making a game drive from Bruce Martin. However, this is still grabbing the land without any forewarning and also taking their livelihoods without any compensation for the hurt.
The District Land Board and Area Land Board cannot been informed or care to inform the people, as the army and UWA have been busy evicting people with force. They are just pawns on the chess-set, and the authorities in Kampala let it happen. The leadership from afar are accepting it and have gazetted the land and taken the land. Therefore, the people who has settled in Apaa have to flee or be evicted from the land, without any justice or law helping them out. No compensation and nothing left for them.
This sort of play has to stop; I am sure the State House is fully aware and let it happen, as they are getting their cut of the transaction of the land for whatever purposes it has. Its been planned for years, but doesn’t make it better, when they could have had solutions back-in-the-day as the government knew this would come. They were already in talks with both Kakira and with Martin. They knew perfectly well, what was up. There is even a third scenario where the land is sold to someone else named Linton Brimblecombe.
Clearly someone forgot the memo and left it stranded. They just evicting people in the favour of one lucky bastard who capture all lands, without paying the needed ones who was actually living their and done so for generations. This is a violation of the trust between the citizens and the government. Because someone accepted the trade of the land people where living on and had rights too.
The Apaa village and Apaa community deserves better, all of the Acholi deserves better. They are being misused and taken for granted by the government. They are just pawns on the chess-set. No value, the first one in the battle-line to take out so the ones of value can be put into play. That is how it looks from the outside.
This have been planned for decades and now it happens.
Amuru Land Grab: What is ours, is OURS; What is their’s, is OURS; and Whatever is your’s, is still OURS. Peace.
“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.
“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.
Barungi, Barbara Mbire – ‘EXCHANGE RATE POLICY AND INFLATION: THE CASE OF UGANDA’ (March 1997).
There are various of reasons for the rising prices of Sugar and processed sugar in Uganda. This isn’t the first time or last cycle of inflation on the prices of this common commodity. Sugar is common in Uganda for concept of having in it in the chai or the milk tea. To sweeten the milk and the black tea the Ugandans drink. Therefore, the Ugandans are needing and using lots of it on daily basis. It isn’t a luxurious goods, but a daily usage, for ordinary use. It has become staple and is staple together with matooke, cassava, rice and maize flour. This is all seemed as basic for the Ugandan people. Sugar is something very important. Therefore, the rising prices says something is out balance.
The balance have now been lost a year after the election. The prices of goods and food was also rising in 2011, therefore, the Republic had the Walk 2 Work demonstrations. These was demonstrations against the rising food prices, which also meant the sugar at that time went up. The same is happening now. With also on alternative exception, that the producers are not only creating sugar for consumption anymore, but ethanol and bio-fuel. Therefore, the produce and profits are going to export bio-fuel and other products, instead of the sugar that the consumers in Uganda uses. This also is an explanation for the rising prices, as well the added exports to Kenya, where the producers gain more selling it there. Than in Uganda, take a look!
In April 2017 USMA commented:
“Uganda Sugar Manufacturers Association (USMA) says the increase in sugar prices has been prompted by the increase in cost of production and the deprecating shillings against major currencies. The Association’s Chairperson, Jim Kabeho says sugar millers were forced to announce what he called a paltry 4 percent increase on each 50-kilogram bag on ex-factory price. The increase according to Kabeho saw a 50-kilogram bag of sugar trading at one hundred and eighty five thousand shillings up from one hundred and seventy thousand shillings” (…) “Meanwhile a source at the Ministry of Trade Industry and Cooperatives who asked for anonymity says the Ministry suspects that the big players like Kakira could have decided not sell its sugar to the market so as to increase production at the ethanol its ethanol plant. The sources says sugar mills with ethanol plants are finally making money on sugar through on co-generation of power, alcohol and ethanol” (URN, 2017).
In April in Masindi:
“Masindi district leaders have risen up against the Masindi district Resident Commissioner, Godfrey Nyakahuma over stopping sugar cane buyers from buying cane from Masindi district. Last week, Nyakahuma launched an operation of impounding trucks of all sugar cane buyers who buy sugar cane from Kinyara sugar limited out growers and over five trucks loaded with cane were impounded by police” (…) “Byaruhanga added that that is a sign indicating that Kinyara sugar Factory has no capacity to crush the available sugar cane adding that since Uganda has a liberalized economy let everyone come and buy the abundant cane available instead of leaving the farmers suffer with the monopoly of Kinyara sugar factory. Amanyire Joshua the former mayor Masindi municipality said that if Kinyara is saying that sugar cane buyers are poachers, Kinyara sugar factory is a smuggler because it is also doing the same. Mary Mujumura the deputy speaker Masindi district blamed Byaruhanga Moses the presidential advisor on political affairs for failing to advise the president on political issues saying that he is not supposed to enter into business matters” (Gucwaki, 2017).
In May 2017:
“From last year’s average of Shs 3,000 per kilo of sugar, the price shot to Shs 4,000 early this year and is now hovering over Shs 5,500. A kilo of Kinyara sugar is the cheapest at Shs 5000, while Kakira sugar is selling at 6,000 a kilo. On the shelves, Kakira sugar and Lugazi sugar are scarce compared to Kinyara sugar, which is in plenty. Many dealers have now started hoarding sugar in order to benefit from anticipated price hike in the short term” (URN, 2017).
In May 2017 – Stanbic Statement:
“The only category to buck that trend was wholesale & retail, where staff costs rose and employment fell. Average purchasing costs also rose in April, reflecting increased prices for animal feed, food stuffs, raw materials and sugar. Higher cost burdens were passed on to clients, leading to a further increase in output charges” (Stanbic Bank, 2017).
President Museveni praises Kakira Millers:
“I would like to thank the Madhvani Group, despite the disappointment by Idi Amin. The family pioneered the production of sugar in Uganda. By 1972 they were producing 70,000 tons but today they have almost tripled the production to 180,000 tons,” he said. The President was today commissioning a state of the art ethanol distillery at Kakira Sugar Limited in Jinja district. The US$36 million facility, which is the largest in the East African Region, will be producing 20 million litres of ethanol annually” (…) “President Museveni pledged to address the issues to regulate the sugar industry but urged the Madhvanis to partner with farmers with large chunks of land for production of sugar-cane, as the cane is not a high value crop. He said people with small land holdings should be left to do intensive farming like the growing of fruits that give high returns. Turning to the issue of prices payable to sugar-cane out-growers, President Museveni advised the buyers and out-growers to sit together and agree on the prices taking into consideration the market prices globally” (Uganda Media Centre, 2017).
Government statement on the 11th May:
“Speaking to 256BN on condition of anonymity a government official monitoring the situation said the manufacturers have not increased the factory price, but he conceded that the situation is worrying. “At the factory prices are stable. Why is it that the prices at the retail gate are high. This means that there are some distributors who are using the hiding strategy in order to rob Ugandans. As Government we shall continue monitoring the situation until we come up with the solution” the official said. Affordability of sugar is considered a key barometer of an ordinary person’s well-being and its pricing can take on political dimensions when people cannot have sugar with their tea” (256BusinessNews, 2017).
Putting the price in pespective:
Kakensa Media reported this today: “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).
This is all proof of a systemic malpractice, where both export, together with lacking yields because of drought and also the production of ethanol and bio-fuel. All of this collected together are reasons for the rising prices of sugar. The sugar price goes up because the use of cane for other things than millers producers sugar for consumption, but for other export products. This is all making sure even as the Republic of Uganda has in the past produces to much, it now doesn’t. Since it elaborately uses the sugarcane for other products.
That has made the Madhvani Group rich and their exports of sugarcane products are clearly selling. Now even their basic milled sugar are sold more expensive on the Ugandan market. There are also proven problems by other millers, who either has to much cane like Kinyara Sugar Factor in Masindi. Which is ironical problem, as the Kakira and Lugazi sugar is empty on the shelves, while the sugarcane hoarding Kinyara are still in the shops. But Kakira which is produced by Madhvani Group, we can now understand, since they have bigger operation and is blessed by the President for their industrial production of ethanol and bio-fuel.
Therefore, the are more reasons than just shopkeepers not getting enough stocks. That the rising prices are not only that there is lacking production. It is the system of export and production. Where the cane isn’t only becoming milled sugar for consumption, but for all the expensive industrial exports like bio-fuel and ethanol. This is all good business, but also bad for consumers and citizens who are accustom with decent prices for their sugar. That is not the fact anymore, as the business and millers has found new profitable ways. So that the surplus sugarcane and also the other gains massive profits. This is all good business for the owners of the sugar-millers and sugar industry. The one who feels the pitch is the consumer and the citizens. Who see scarcity of sugar inside the shops and also the inflation of prices on the sugar. Peace.
There aren’t only murders and mysteries on the telly, its real life and not fiction as the Syrian civil war continues rapidly without whomever force and whomever ally around Aleppo or other check-points where the Presidents force, rebels or ISIS are shooting. The bullets don’t have names, but the men and woman on the side-line and at the battle who dies does; the men and woman who loses their life for themselves or a Nobel-cause.
As much as there are forces battling inside the Iraq nation as Government Forces are attacking together with American soldiers ISIS stronghold around Mosul. There are continued fighting inside of Afghanistan. Still battles between civilians and the Indian Army inside the Kashmir state that has issues there and on the Pakistan side of Kashmir. The long battle for freedom or justice, as the Kurds are battling for in Syria, Turkey and in Iraq; being the minority in the middle of the civil war in Syria and Iraq.
That is just some places, as the deteriorating state of affairs are attacking all sort of freedoms inside Ethiopia, as the army and Aghazi squad are killing and harassing the people’s in Amhara and Oromia states. Together with the arrests of bloggers, silencing media outlets, and detaining demonstrators, burning the homes of people and inflicting violence on the citizens. This state of emergency is used as a useful tool to oppress, silence and make sure the violence and killings doesn’t get out; while the Central Government works to find reasons and solutions to ways of total control of minds and bodies in the states of demonstrations against the Addis Ababa regime.
In Burundi the central government are using the Police and army, together with the Imbonerakure that are detaining, harassing, killing and torturing civilians, silencing the opposition and the ones not loyal to the President Pierre Nkurunziza narrative of keeping power by any means. The Burundian Government has claimed that the Rwandan Government has created armies and guerrillas that wished for a coup d’état against the Nkurunziza regime. Therefore the fleeing civilians are in the wind as the Rwandan government has been wonder for a spell, if they would banish the Burundian refugees a place in the country.
While in the Democratic Republic of Congo, several guerrillas are still running wild, burning and killing villagers in the States of North and South Kivu, Katanga and so on. Where the foreign based groups that have been started in Rwanda and Uganda, continues to battle the locals for the valuable minerals; as even today a former M23 Commander Sultani Makenga who been in Uganda has crossed with a militarized group, surely from Kisoro as before to cause more havoc in the Kivu’s. The ADF-NALU, Mayi-Mayi and others doesn’t create enough death and crimes against humanity already, as the MONUSCO and FARDC haven’t the ability or will to silence them.
In South Sudan, the internal battle that started in July 2016, the resurgence of skirmishes between the SPLA/M and the SPLM/A-IO who are the TGNU and the Opposition party, which is the armies for President Salva Kiir and his former First Vice-President Riek Machar. That has since July battled each other with forces, in Western Bahr El Ghazal State, Equatoria State and Upper Nile State. There been fighting between the two in other states, but just show how big and powerful the forces are. The South Sudanese civilians are the losers who flees to Ethiopia, Uganda and Democratic Republic of Congo, even in Congo because the Opposition we’re there has been asked to leave to other destinations. Therefore the internal power-struggle those fear of genocide, as still creating implications inside other nations.
In Somalia the Al-Shabab, the different state continues to have infighting together with the AMISOM mission. The running battles for land between Galdumug Interim Administration and the Puntland Government inside the Federal Republic of Somalia. Doesn’t really help for a peaceful session and making dialogue in the war-torn nation where Piracy and Khat been the ways of securing funds for ammunition and AKs, not for building a state and security.
Eritrea is closed and the continuation of the flow of refugees, as the internal controlling central government that forces the freedoms and liberties, as the men and woman does what they can to even enter Ethiopia, where they are badly treated. Eritrean reports are staggering as they are even supporting internal guerrillas in Ethiopia and Djibouti to unsettle their neighbours.
There are wars and running battles between government forces and rebels in Central African Republic, Mali, Mozambique and so on. This is happening in silence and without little flash, even as the ones are guerrillas like Boko Haram that are going in between Nigeria and Cameroon, to stop the Government from functioning and spreading fear of locals.
What is worrying how these actions continues, and how there are other I could mention, the issues in Libya, the Algerian complex and the Western Sahara colony of the Kingdom of Morocco.
The death that dies in silence, in the midst of homes, villages where their families have been living for decades, while big-men fight like two elephants; the grass get hurt, but the big-men be fine. The same is with all of these civil wars, the civilians are dying, the societies are deteriorating, the central government are controlled by little amount of people instead of procedure and rule of law.
The worry is how it becomes pro-longed, how the innocent dies and the power-hungry survive and the lucky get refugee somewhere else in uncertainty, like for how long can they stay, as been seen with the Kenyan Government work to get rid of Somali refugees in Dadaab Refugee camp during this calendar year, while the Somalian Federation if far from peaceful. Even as the Ethiopian troops has went home again surely to use their knowledge to chop heads in Amhara and Oromia. That is what they do now, they just doesn’t want people to know about it.
We shouldn’t allow this actions to happen, this killings, this violence and the silence of freedom, liberty and justice to our fellow peers, we should act upon it, question our power-to-be and the men who rules over these armies, the ones creating the havoc and the ones who are behind the crimes against humanity. Those are the ones that earning money on the wars and the ones that doesn’t want the words on the acts; those are the worst ones in it all as they are accomplices to destruction of lives and societies as we speak. Peace.
MOGADISHU, Somalia, June 20, 2016 –Today, on World Refugee Day, the Somali Federal Government and the People of Somalia acknowledge, commemorate and celebrate the enduring strength of refugees everywhere whose painful experiences and journeys we can only be humbled by.
The Government of Somalia firmly stands with refugees, and believes that all should be done by Governments and partner agencies to support them re-establish their lives at home and abroad, so that they can be empowered to pursue their hopes and dreams like every other human being. The solution to ending the misery of displacement is not building more walls, hardening borders and compromising the institution of asylum which is sacrosanct.
The Somali Government firmly believes that where refugees have been provided opportunities and, where they are supported to effectively integrate into their new societies, they have and will continue to prosper and contribute positively. As a result of this, society will flourish and the world will become more peaceful and tolerant.
World Refugee Day is of particular importance to Somalia given that our painful civil war led to a significant number of our people seeking safety and opportunity globally. Today, thankfully, many Somali refugees of the civil war have successfully resettled in new homes across the world and are supporting their relatives, refugees and otherwise, through remittances and through their own engagement in Somalia’s recovery.
There are over one million Somali refugees living across the world. Most of these are in neighboring countries such as Kenya, Ethiopia and Yemen. The Somali Government views the safe and orderly return of Somali refugees to their homes as an important priority. In order to facilitate this, the Government is fighting the last remaining pockets of opportunistic terrorism and creating an inclusive State which upon their return will provide Somali refugees with hope and opportunity.
As President, I can assure you that my Government is doing absolutely everything possible to safely return our people home. This is their home and we understand fully that there is no place like home.
The Government of Somalia reaffirms its stand with refugees.
“I have no time to discuss the killing of innocent civilians or rape and defilement. Issues of security are not negotiable and I pity leaders who want me to meet them over killings. I have told them to tell their people to stop the killings or else we shall crush them” – President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni (Daily Monitor, 14.04.2016).
Yet again there are certain quotes from the leadership of Uganda that are flabbergasting. This is disgusting and outrageous. While the Don Museveni the one behind the NRM Racketeering he has said worse during the year of 2016. That was talking about the certainty about the Army involvement in Rwenzori and Rwenzori Sub-Region. They continue to prosecute the people there. With this is the continuation of the Post-Election Violence where UPDF have gone in with full-force. Now it has been reported that Rwenzururu Kingdom Royal Guards are no disarmed and the Army is planning to be there for 1, 5 month more under their Operation Dissolution. As they continue to arrest locals and some of them might be killers from the clashes. There was regional killings in Bundibugyo and house-burning, so there certainly are violators, but also video footage are proving that State Agencies and Security Forces as Uganda Defense People’s Force (UPFD) and Uganda Police Force. So the killings and crush them down is believable, as the footage of killings of Rwenzururu Royal Guards both at the Palace and the Villages have clearly been targeted.
The last attack on Rwenzururu Kingdom came after Omusinga bwa Rwenzururu Charles Wesley Mumbere that asked for while negotiations with NRM man Captain Mike Mukula. So there are certainly UPDF plans behind this, as their deployment have become stronger after the attack on the Palace. It seems like it and the violence is endless and has lasted since the end of February. The government forces and Police have claimed about this “Kirumamutima” and “Yiira Republic” something that President Museveni has used again and again! And the reason why that is strange is that the reasoning; because it seems like a fiction and tale to clean the hands of the governmental forces. These Government Forces are spreading fear and even left many people living in IDP Camps and also villages left behind. So the stress and agony that has happens after in the area and the certainty of voting for FDC and not NRM. Therefore the NRM Generals and NRM President, as I call the Don Museveni is using gangster tactics and killing Royal Guards demoting the kingdom and striving for being respected in the Rwenzori while also using the ethnical and tribes against each other to gain more power. Even it cost lives, because the Museveni want total control at any price. That is why he comes with treats again. So now he wants to crush them. Peace.
GENEVA, Switzerland, April 13, 2016 – The top United Nations humanitarian official in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has voiced concern over the fate of more than 35,000 people who, in the past three weeks, have fled the area of Mpati, in the Masisi Territory of North Kivu province, following clashes between the Congolese army and armed groups.
Since 27 March five sites for internally displaced persons (IDP) have been emptied, forcing thousands to seek safety in surrounding villages. Although some who fled the fighting have started to return, the situation remains volatile and of great concern.
“The past days have been difficult for those IDPs forced to leave the sites, prevented by the clashing forces from returning to those sites, and unable to get the humanitarian assistance that they need. I am deeply concerned by the situation,” the Humanitarian Coordinator in DR Congo, Dr Mamadou Diallo, said today.
Access to the area has been difficult, notably because of the clashes. However, since 4 April, a number of humanitarian organizations have reached the area to evaluate the needs of the affected people. The Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), mandated to coordinate the humanitarian response, is leading a mission to the area of Mpati.
Rein Paulsen, Head of OCHA in DRC, reiterates the importance of unhindered access to areas of need. “Access is paramount to our work, it is vital for humanitarian partners to reach the people in need,” Mr. Paulsen said.
Violence in North Kivu, affecting both civilians and aid organizations, has been rising since late 2014 resulting in renewed displacement. The renewed displacement is taking place amid a shrinking of humanitarian funding while needs remain great. During the current military operations in Mpati area, there have been threats of forced site closures, a concerning issue for humanitarian actors which has been the subject of high-level engagement, including by the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon during a recent mission to DRC. The threat of forced site closures is particularly concerning as the humanitarian community and authorities in North Kivu have agreed on a strategy to draw down the number of sites in North Kivu.
The Humanitarian Coordinator has been advocating to ensure that any site closure respects internationally agreed standards regarding IDPs. In a high-level forum held on 05 April in Kinshasa, the Humanitarian Coordinator stressed again that while DRC has the right to close IDP sites, the role of the humanitarian community is to ensure that such closures “are in line with DRC’s obligations under international humanitarian law”. He added that the humanitarian community is ready to work closely with the Congolese authorities in identifying and implementing durable solutions to the problem of displacement in Eastern DRC.
“Such solutions must be anchored in the Kampala Convention,” the Humanitarian Coordinator said today in reference to the African Union Convention on the Protection of Assistance of Internally Displaced Persons in Africa to which DRC is party.
North Kivu has about 781,000 IDPs, of whom 30 per cent are in one of the 53 displacement sites. There are seven IDP sites in the Mpati area hosting more than 45,000 people.
“’I have not come here because of politics but because of the people losing their lives and property. Whoever is responsible will suffer the consequences,’ President .Yoweri Kaguta Museveni during today’s visit in Bundibugyo” (NBS TV Uganda, 28.02.2016).
Yesterday President Museveni went around in Kasese District and Bundibugyo district where he was in army fatigue and speaking of the consequence of violence, as his militarized politics could lead into aggravated assaults and killings. The deaths that sparked right after elections and have made people flee their homes and land for IDP Camps. This here will show how the government through the security organizations, as the Police Force and the Army who has acted with violence and not with intelligence; as the rhetoric and information to the media does not add-up. Something I will take you through.
As the violence of Kasese and Bundibugyo district have fleered up and taken scores of lives. Both by Police and civilians; the Police and Army have targeted specific groups after a troublesome local councilor election in the area. Those have opened up wounds from 2014. The Region have been a place of violence, because of the security organs and the police force taking the handpicked individuals while civilians flee from Bundibugyo and living in IDP Camps instead of their homes. The Rwenzori Sub-Region have been put in flames since the election, and there been over a 120 people died during the last two months and many houses been burnt down to the ground. As the Police and Army have helped the men taking sides in the clashes instead of working to make it peaceful, therefore the killings that even was taped we’re directed at Omusinga bwa Rwenzuru’s security guards that even been delegated to him by the government. That is rare incidence and also showing at what level of violence the government forces goes and therefore the fear in the area. Take a look what the King said about the recent actions!
The Rwenzuru speaks out:
“Omusinga said, “Kayihura cannot rely on someone who hates the kingdom to investigate and address issues affecting the Rwenzori region” (…)“The problems of Rwenzori region have not been handled well and this explains why people are killing each other. A section of people who are against our cultural institution and those that failed to mobilize for the (ruling) party are taking malicious reports to government that we are fighting government. This is not true.” (…)“These were spreading malicious messages that the meeting I had with Dr. Kiiza Besigye contributed to their defeat and yet they failed to organize and talk to me during the recently concluded campaigns,” (Ainganyiza, 2016).
The King says it is not criminal or ethnical acts that has done the trick this time, but a reaction to the recent election and that there been no direct actions against the government; that is said to counter what IGP Kale Kayihura earlier said after being in Rwenzori Sub-Region and using the intelligence from the Police Force, while also not stating the direct killings that happen to the Rwenzururu Kingdom guards that was shot and killed early. While the President was speaking the people in the Bundibugyo area together with Minister Bataringaya were being BOOED by the public because they sees his actions as lazy, since they doesn’t see him doing anything to stop the violence. Under here is more information about on the matter!
What a Government Official has said:
“Jolly Tibamanya, the Bundibugyo district chairperson, said that 31 people were killed during the clashes and 361 houses burnt. He requested the President to improve the presence of security personnel in the sub county. Tibamanya added that several residents have abandoned their gardens for fear of being attacked” (94.3 QFM Lira, 29.03.2016).
On 25th March the Rwenzori Police Spokesperson said this:
“The Rwenzori regional police spokesperson Lydia Tushabe has said that the police are now treating the attackers in the districts of Kasese and Bundibugyo as a militia group” (New Vision, 25.03.2016).
Something the Police left out to tell:
“On Thursday March 24, Bakonjo elders from the highlands of Bundibugyo District gathered to meet with Inspector General of Police Kale Kayihura, who has been camping in the Rwenzori sub-region over the recent weeks to tackle the violence that has so far claimed at least 32 lives in Kasese and Bundibugyo districts. After waiting for hours, the elders were informed that Gen Kayihura had flown away and that they would meet another day. Tempers flared, especially because many Bakonjo look at the police chief as a partisan player in the conflict that has pitied them against the Bamba – Babwisi, Basongora and other tribal sub-groups. Mr Christopher Kibanzanga, the MP-elect of Bughendera County in Bundibugyo, however, says his fellow Bakonjo should not worry anymore about Gen Kayihura’s perceived partisanship in the matter, which he says “has been handled”. Mr Kibazanga says Gen Kayihira’s intention was not to snub Bakonjo elders but had to leave Bundibugyo “immediately. “He gave me a call and explained” (Rwenzururu Times, 28.03.2016).
As the Police and Government continues to spread the information on the matter. “Kirumamutima” or Strong Hearted Youth Group was supposed to be behind the matter, and now even the Police Regional Spokesperson Lydia Tushabe claimed a militia, but did need say who. When Lydia says it is a Militia, than it’s either “Kirumamutima” or the Uganda Saving Force (USF), who was one of two groups claiming to be behind the shooting and stealing of guns at Kapchorwa. Still that does not sound like what’s the King or the Politicians in the area claim. The cross-claims and changing statements from the Police and Army does not look well together with the obvious malicious attack on the Kingdoms Security Guards that was even filmed and created an outrage that got even the IGP out of Kampala to search the area. The Police have stopped discussing the Yira Republic because the Public knows that is an excuse for the Security Force to get rid of the men who is not positive towards the ruling regime and the opposition; as the opposition is strong and didn’t want NRM men in councilor in the sub-counties and Rwenzori sub-region. And the Police did not say or want to say to the world that they are taking sides in a fragile situation; that is well-known since the clashes of 2014 is not far from the minds of the people and the Local Councilor III elections was just the last straw and the Police Force together with the army went all in, not with justice or rule of law, but brutally killing.
A Story on how 16 died in Bundibugyo:
“A woman with a baby strapped on her back is found harvesting cocoa (stealing) from plantation that doesn’t belong to her. In a typical mob justice fashion, she is beaten. But with the pang with which she was harvesting the cocoa, she fights back and delivers some cuts to some members of the mob. She is eventually overpowered. She and her child are dead. Her tribesmen come for the man whose cocoa was being nipped. The man (whose cocoa the dead woman was harvesting illegally) is killed by the alleged thief woman’s tribesmen. The thing spirals out of hand and degerates into a tribal clash. And the last time checking? 16 deaths” (Rwenzori Post, 25.03.2016).
As the first sign of peaceful action from the Government:
“Government begins supplying food to the over 10,000 people displaced by tribal clashes in Bundibugyo” (NTV Uganda, 29.03.2016).
The Story is just a sorry reflection of the state of affairs and that the 16 people in the total of death, that died for very little and not even the ballot, but cocoa beans that was stolen. An innocent baby lost the life in those clashes. This proves there are certain animosity in the area and how quickly the melee and violence happens. That kind of actions are local clashes, not militia made, but mob mentality as the Police Force is not in real control of the local policing or violence. As the woman was stealing cocoa, but she deserved to be fined or repay the owner for the stolen cocoa, which would have been the ordinary treatment, not killing her and her baby, together with 14 more people! So it’s sad to know how the killings got out of hand and the clashes is just one out of many in the recent month. If the rest of the killings except for the ones directly going against the kings guards in the Rwenzori Sub-Region, and these killings was neither militia as the woman who stole cocoa was notUSFor the so-called “Kirumamutima”so the Police intelligence cannot be that great. First it was tribal, than it was criminal, and not it is militia. So there is either a cover-up or the IGP Kayihura and the local Spokesperson is not speaking the whole truth. We might need a giant Parliament Report as the one that came after the 2014 clashes in the region. This time it fleered up straight after elections and announcement of local councilor in the area. That ended up in clashes and later got fueled into old grievances’ between the tribes in the area as a tool for the Police and Army to try to take more control of the Kasese and Bundibugyo district; as they are in the Rwenzori and Albertine region where also the oil-development is. So the way the NRM-Regime have treated the area and used Machiavellian tactics and now it has backfired.
The worst thing is that President Museveni came in with the tanks and the Army; while just walking around like a royalty and not asking the locals, but telling people how to be. The Same did the Police Force has done and also not listened or confirmed either with the Rwenzururu King or the Elders of the area. To continue to add further insults to the injury and the killings of relatives. That are now being used for political gain and saying that certain militias or guerrillas are behind it. While the small reports on the ground shows other display or character of violence. Like the Government of Uganda tries to disorganize the Rwenzori sub-region; so they cannot gain anything out of the coming development projects or the planned operations that are in the area. As the Albertine-Region and Rwenzori Sub-Region will have lot to say when coming in the oil-projects, so it seem a little to startling that it happens there and not in other parts of the country. But hey, that is just me. Peace.