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The World Bank commends the rising taxes in Uganda!

Yep, the biggest bank and the Bretton Woods Organization called the World Bank has commended the works of President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni and his plans for added taxes. That comes from the similar institution like International Monetary Fund, that ordered Uganda to follow the Structural Adjustment Plan (SAP), therefore, the IMF that fixed more privatization without lacking investments. Are now okaying a higher rising taxes on the Republic’s citizens. This is done, while the economy is not strengthen, but with added external and internal loans. Therefore, the rise of GDP and use of loans, as well as repayments on those loans will sooner or later hurt the economy. Even with the rise of taxes. This will be start of vicious cycle where the state is issuing loans and taxes, while the revenue is used to repay loans, not development. It is basically. But before I go into the deep of the part of the troubling take from the World Bank. Let me just show you quickly the result of the SAP and their advice there.

The studies also make it clear that for SAP-type policies to have a chance of success, certain preconditions are necessary. The public sector had certain social responsibilities that the current framework has pushed it out of but without “a proper handing over” to the private sector. The assumption and hope were that the market would fill the gap left by the retreating state. Clearly this has not happened. There is therefore need for Government either to retain certain key social sectors, or only hand them over to the private sector only when the latter is ready to effectively take them over. Clearly non-profit making aspects of social responsibility cannot and do not get taken over by the private sector. For poverty to be reduced there are certain social responsibilities or even whole sectors that can only effectively be handled by the public sector. Welfare systems and subsidies to farmers in the developed world attest to the need for the retention of these key areas by the public sector. Therefore a policy that proscribes such a hand-over must also ensure that it is done in a verifiable manner so that the private sector can be held to account. Civil society has in the past tried to fill the gap but this has been done in an ad hoc manner” (Kevin Akoyi Makokha – ‘STRUCTURAL ADJUSTMENT PARTICIPATORY REVIEW INITIATIVE (SAPRI) – UGANDA COUNTRY REPORT: A synthesis of the Four SAPRI Studies’ September 2001).

So, when the last system from the World Bank and IMF was introduced the system and the government wasn’t ready to privatize, however, that didn’t stop them or the government to do so. Especially since the funds and loans at the time came with the hitch of doing so. Therefore, the troubles with the privatization and the lacking oversight is also partly because of these programs subsidized by these organizations. That is why the World Bank and IMF should be more careful professing what sort of thing would be genuine and sincere, since they have messed up before. It isn’t only the State House who has messed up, he has gotten help and followed the procedures of these mechanisms. If not, he wouldn’t be able to eat such vast amounts of donor funding in the past. This is well-known, but the lack of oversight, is because of the will of wanting to have control and a say in everything. That is why the letter from the President to Minister of Finance, is the reason for the new levied taxes. So, if you wonder why I have distrust to the World Bank and IMF, it is because of their history and that the public is paying for it, because their impact on the governments for the reasons. That these states should be guinea-pigs for the economy belief of trickling down economics, even as the results has begged differ if it really drips back into the system again. Which it doesn’t because the ones that gets a lot want to keep it and get some more. No dole it out to anyone they can find.

Here is what the World Bank stated today: “In the special section of the Update, the report analyses how Uganda could raise more domestic revenues to support its development. Uganda’s tax system is one of the most modern in the region, but revenue collections, at 14 percent of GDP, are low, and way below its tax potential. Tax avoidance and evasion, partly resulting from generous tax exemptions to investors, weak tax administration, and a large informal sector (now at 80 percent), pose challenges to increasing revenues. Up to 5 percent of GDP is lost annually in tax leakages. Personal income tax contributes roughly 18 percent of GDP compared to up to 40 percent in developed countries. VAT collections amount to 4 percent of GDP, but would rise to 6 percent if there were no exemptions. The report suggests that Uganda could widen its tax base by tapping into areas that are outside the tax net; applying tax instruments correctly and fairly; improving efficiency, transparency and accountability in tax administration; and delivering better public services” (World Bank – ‘Improving Taxation to Finance Uganda’s Development’ 15.05.2018).

Therefore, the World Bank likes the idea of adding more tax on the Mobile Money transactions and the movement of digital cash, as well as on Airtime and other needed things. The ones that hasn’t a bank-account or the ability to fund or even try to get a loans from the banking system. Are okayed by the World Bank as possible targets for taxes. This isn’t transparent, but making it more expensive to be poor, as the rates to transmit and the use mobile money will come. The companies whose use this method will bill the users, they will not take the hit. The same with all the traders and the importers of all the other items that was on the lists of the newly taxed items.

I doubt these new taxes will do any good, it will just be more funds for the elites, the NRM and the President to eat. They are not delivering government services with the trillions of shillings they are using now. They are billing up to their asses and spending rampant, without having the revenue. That is why the rising debts are there. Instead of living frugal and thinking of the future, the NRM and President Museveni are eating like there is no tomorrow!

State House, the President and the Cabinet are eating heavy, they are not delivering, they have no plans to do so. If so, they give locally when needed, but the lack of transparency and accountability, is the reason for missing funds. Recently even the documents from the GAVI Funds was taken from the Ministry of Health. Therefore, a government who cannot be trusted with funds giving donations to help the sick, how can we believe the tax put on Mobile Money will go to roads or teachers?

I doubt that, I am not that naive, this NRM has proven for 32 years, that they are eating and not caring. The World Bank can commend and praise. While I condemn, until they prove that they money are delivered to the schools, that the teachers have their salaries and the civil servants are properly paid. Not just hiring some random Cubans to fix the issues for a short time. That is not how to build a national health care system. That is how to mock the ones you already have. Peace.

Uganda: Danida built the Courts, M7 donate 100m to a SACCO, 150m to the MPs for Cars and so on!

Buguma UPF

Today is a weird news day, the news from Uganda are scattered and shows the ability of nobility from Ugandan Government isn’t there. The impunity from Uganda Police Force continues as the loyal men to IGP Kayihura doesn’t cares about the law. While President Museveni drops a few coins, while his MPs ask for millions shillings worth of cars themselves; and there over 400 MPs so the amount of money used on the cars are huge. At the same time the news of Danish Tax Payers have built most of the Courts, the NRM steady progress is in the hands of foreigners and not in the hands of the allocations done by Ugandan Parliament. If so, then they would have contributed some cash for the cement that constructed these buildings. And so it goes on!

Just as Dr. Kizza Besigye goes to Court to be allowed to leave for United Kingdom for his meetings with Ugandan Diaspora, FDC P10 and others who support his cause abroad. The former District Police Commander Aaron Buguma showed his disgrace for Law and Order with not joining his own court trial as his own boss Inspectorate General of Police (IGP) Edward Kale Kayihura the other day. So the law is different it seems depending on who it is served upon, especially the ones who supposed to guard it can run away from their brutal behavior against citizens.

M7 17.08.2016

While the riches of President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, the walking budget, showed his mercy at the Bwebajja Fruit Sellers SACCO got Ush.100m and also giving away tools. This came today as Court Justice Bart Katureebe said this in Parliament: Danida built almost all the courts in Uganda, but why isn’t gov’t not taking interest in this. You have courts sharing offices with bars”. That means the Danish Tax Payers monies built the Courts of Uganda, not used the extended revenue made Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) or the generate tax that President Museveni so proudly speaks of. EU spokesman Kristian Schmidt: “Praise for Denmark by Chief Justice: “Danida built almost all the courts in Uganda”.

Members of Parliament procurement of cars:

Each of the 427 MPs will receive UGX150m by October to buy new car to travel to their constituencies, according to Speaker Rebecca Kadaga. Parliament will have to process a supplementary budget amounting to at least UGX64bn to finance the MPs car grant. This comes after Parliamentary Commission rejected proposal by finance ministry to finance MPs car grant in shifts with priority given to newly elected MPs” (WBS TV Uganda, 17.08.2016).

UNRA Presser

If the greed of the Members of Parliament wasn’t big enough their road safety fears are extended as the men and woman have discussed building a fly-over to make sure they are well. While the Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA) need to do this instead of securing better roads so there is less accidents and incidents to secure road safety. The road projects are most likely to be fulfill are the ones where foreign donors dolce out money or grants through bilateral and multinational organizations as International Monetary Funds or World Bank instead of through the ordinary budget of the allocated funds in the fiscal year. So that the MPs have the balls to order fresh from the factory SUVs and ask for fly-over to secure their working place is disgusting.

Another issue today: “Appearing before the parliamentary committee on ICT, minister of ICT and National Guidance Frank Tumwebaze admitted that the NRM government has finally given up trying to control the internet especially social media usage in Uganda. Tumwebaze said “every time government tried to block social media, within a few minutes, Ugandans were already back on after invoking VPNs “(virtual private networks)” (The Observer, 18.08.2016). So the VPN shows the sanctions for national security doesn’t work… so the reality is that the Ugandan Government are beaten by technology and their own public will to do what they do. The only danger this is to the Ugandan Government is that the NRM cannot be only source of information and where the intelligence they are gaining. Therefore the Opposition will have a place to share information without fear online and on social media even if the Ruling Regime bans it or tries to shut it down.

I should have commented on the closure of Greenhill Academy for being World Bank and Mark Zukerberg (Facebook Founder) donated school for having books with explicit content; while the reports that most UPE schools lacks books or equipment. So the ironic side of the closure is amazing and foolery from the state. But wanting to take control of private institution is not strange in the context of micro-management style of the present day NRM.

There are always more, this my little update on today’s Movement news and the Parliament of Uganda. This has been hazardous… this has been special and would not be the last. Because this government cannot help themselves and we who follows now it! Peace.

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