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Burundi: Portant Nomination du Porte-Parole et du Porte-Parole Adjoint du President de la Repulique (06.03.2017)

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UNSC Report of February 2017 on the Burundi Crisis: Staggering human rights violations has unfolded since 2015!

nkurunziza-press-conference-30-12-2016

The Burundian crisis as described by the United Nations and a report delivered to the United Security Council on the 23rd February 2017. This is the most recent compiled report on the situation of safety, human rights and peaceful work in the East African republic. Where the President Pierre Nkurunziza, decided to run for a third term, even as the constitution after the Arusha Peace Agreement, was set to be possible to have two terms.

So we are in March 2017, as the crisis has been going on since 2015. The Burundian government have continued to assassinated, detained and intimidated their population, as much they have also created a political climate where the Nkurunziza regime is hostile to foreign interference, as well as the toil of the crisis, also creates a vacuum in economic and fiscal funds for the state.

All of this is reports made to the United Nations and found by the UN Human Rights Observation Group that been stationed in Bujumbura and had to request and notify the government of their arrival. The Government are keeping their hands more tight and controlling as they want to supervise even the experts from the UN. Therefore the report has been criticised by Burundian government as expected. Because who would like to have these sorts of allegations and reports about their government. When you put the Burundian government acts together you can see a systematic oppression of the citizens of the republic. That is not a look any government want to be put in the public space, but this sort of aggressive police state and use of political youth wing to oppress the people. Just take a look!

Political Crisis:

“Nearly two years have passed since the beginning of the political crisis in Burundi, which was sparked by the decision of the ruling party, Conseil national pour la défense de la démocratie — Forces pour la défense de la démocratie (CNDDFDD), to support President Pierre Nkurunziza ’s candidacy for a third term. Since then, the political impasse has only deepened. Political space has been narrowed further through repression. In lieu of meaningful dialogue, the exchange of political views, primarily in the form of accusations and counter -accusations, is taking place across social media and in public communiqués. I n a new development, President Nkurunziza suggested in a statement at the end of 2016 that he might seek a fourth term in office “if the Burundian people decide to change the Constitution according to their wishes” (UNSC, P: 1, 2017).

Violations of the State:

“While the Government insists that the situation in the country has normalized, political opposition and civil society leaders continue to appeal for urgent international action to avert the risk of further deterioration, widespread violence and mass atrocities. Despite a decline in overt violence and fewer incidences of armed confrontation, reports of human rights violations and abuses continue, including killings, enforced disappearances, gender -based violence, arbitrary arrests and detentions, torture and ill -treatment, along with the discovery of unidentified bodies. The allegations of more than 200 cases of enforce d disappearance since October 2016 are of particular concern. From April 2015 to 31 December 2016, OHCHR documented 593 violations of the right to life, and hundreds of people continue to be arrested every month” (…) “Many Burundians live in fear as a result of widespread repression and increasing intimidation by the Imbonerakure, the ruling party’s youth wing. There are also unconfirmed reports of attacks and human rights abuses committed against Government supporters and security forces” (UNSC, P: 2, 2017).

Establish a new Constitution in violation of the Arusha Peace Agreement:

“On 16 November 2016, the Council of Ministers approved the establishment of a constitutional review commission mandated to study amendments to the Constitution. The commission is reportedly tasked with analysing articles of the Constitution to be amended for Government consideration and, with the latter’s agreement, proposing an amended draft Constitution. It further stated that the Council’s decision had been informed by: (a) recommendations on constitutional amendments contained in reports of the National Independent Electoral Commission, the National Independent Human Rights Commission and CNDI; (b) the resolution adopted at the 11 October meeting of political parties and leaders; and (c) the need to harmonize certain articles with EAC law. Opposition political parties and civil society criticized the Council’s decision, warning that any deliberate violation of the Constitution and the Arusha Agreement would only worsen the current political crisis” (UNSC, P: 3, 2017).

Security Situation:

“The security situation remains fragile. While incidents of overt violence and clashes between armed groups and Government security and defence forces had ebbed for some time, daily allegations of arbitrary arrest, ill -treatment, torture and enforced disappearance, along with the discovery of bodies, continue to be reported” (…) “The Imbonerakure reportedly also routinely participate in joint operations with the police and intelligence services and are reported to have been implicated in numerous cases of arbitrary arres t and disappearance, ill-treatment, killings and some cases of sexual violence” (UNSC, P: 5, 2017).

Burundian and Rwandan Relations:

“Relations between Burundi and Rwanda remain tense. Throughout the reporting period, isolated border incidents, as well as trade and movement restrictions, were witnessed. On 29 July, the Council of Ministers decided to stop the export of all food products to neighbouring countries, repo rtedly in response to insufficient domestic production. On 23 August, the East African Legislative Assembly decided to investigate issues affecting trade and free movement of citizens between Burundi and Rwanda. Burundian security forces frequently arrested individuals travelling to and from Rwanda, as well as the United Republic of Tanzania” (UNSC, P: 6, 2017).

Political Rhetoric:

“Since the beginning of the crisis, political figures have used inflammatory and hate-filled language in speeches, on social media, in communiqués and in the press, calling on the population to “protect” the country against so-called traitors and plotters allegedly trying to destabilize Burundi. Rhetoric has included incitement to violence, as well as attacks on the opposition and against civil society, while neighbouring countries have been accused of involvement in attempted assassinations” (UNSC, P: 9, 2017).

Effects of the Crisis:

“There has been a four-fold increase in the number of people who are food insecure — from 730,000 to 3 million — owing to the rising prices of basic food items, the seasonal rain deficit during the 2016 agricultural season, chronic poverty and poor harvests. According to the World Health Organization, some 8.2 million Burundians (73 per cent of the total population) were affected by malaria in 2016; 3,826 died. The number of internally displaced persons is estimated at 170,000, while the number of spontaneous returnees identified so far in some targeted provinces is approximately 37,000. The monthly rate of arrival of refugees in Neighbouring countries from August to October 2016 doubled from previous months, and the increasing trend was confirmed in the first weeks of 2017. As of early February 2017, the number of Burundians who had fled the country since April 2015 stood at 387,000” (UNSC, P: 10, 2017).

Human Rights Observers:

“As of February 2017, only 45 African Union human rights observers, 32 of whom are funded through catalytic funding provided by the Peacebuilding Fund, have been deployed to Burundi. Twenty-three African Union military experts have been deployed; however, owing to a scheduled rotation, there were only 10 African Union military experts in the country at the time of reporting. Despite months of negotiations, the Government has yet to sign a memorandum of understanding guiding the African Union deployment in Burundi” (UNSC, P: 12, 2017). “The Office of the Special Adviser and OHCHR are not alone in experiencing Government restrictions. Some members of the United Nations country team have been affected by the Government’s decision to require 10 days’ notification ahead of any in-country travel. There have been delays in the processing of visas, and some local staff have faced intimidation, including instances of arbitrary arrest” (UNSC, P: 13, 2017).

If you read this you couldn’t be shocked as the reports of this actions has been in media, but when you collect them, you can see the evidence of the systematic oppression of the people. This is the reason for the refugees and the hard-hitting report that we’re delivered this February. People should know what is happening in Burundi and not let it pass-by all the other scandals and the atrocities happening in the world today. Peace.

Reference:

United Nations Security Council – ‘Report of the Secretary-General on Burundi’ (23.02.2017)

Burundi: “Menace des Subventions du Fond Mondial pour le Burundi suite au malaise au sein du Ministre de la Sarte Publique et de la Lutte contre le Sida” (08.02.2017)

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Even when the Ugandan Gov. have the funds for health care and medicine; they still mismanage the funds or does not procure the necessary kits, staff or proof of use of the Global Funds; findings from the Audit Report of February of 2016 from The Global Funds!

Sickness Cartoon

There been reported how the Global Fund has gone through and report how the donor funds to Government of Uganda (GoU) and the Ministry of Health. As the Value for Money way of auditing and describing the state of the programs that has been funded by this donor funding; this is especially against the diseases like Tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS and Malaria. This is the situation of the funds and how it was used. This is interesting to see how the Government of Uganda has been coming to accountability and responsibility toward the procurement and accessing the monies, as they was not using the allocated funds or unaccounted for. There is questions for why certain projects are so slow in procurement and why there is too little of specialized kits in the National Medicine Stores (NMS) as they had budget for a dozen more than; when the audit was happening. That is a worrying sign. But look at the quotes from the Global Fund report from February 2016, and see what the important pieces from it are!

Aids Support

“The Global Fund support in Uganda:

Since its inception in Uganda in 2002, the Global Fund has signed a total of 20 grants amounting to USD 1 billion, USD 623 million of which had been disbursed to the country at the time of the audit” (…)”The grants are implemented by two Principal Recipients, The Ministry of Finance Planning and Economic Development and The AIDS Support Organization (TASO). The Ministry of Finance has delegated responsibilities with respect to implementation of the grants to the Ministry of Health” (…)”Approximately 90% of Global Fund grants to Uganda are spent on the procurement of medicines and health products. The Secretariat’s Pooled Procurement Mechanism procures all health commodities with the exception of tuberculosis drugs which are procured by the Global Drug Facility” (P: 4, 2016).

Ratings of the work:

The rating of the operations tells a story on how the services are delivered in the country. As the Programmatic and Performance where you can see the accuracy and support decision making to check the quality service, second part is the Financial and Fiduciary how to use the actual grants and check them in an effective manner, this two both the Programmatic and Performance, and the Financial and Fiduciary is handled in a Partial Plan to become Effective (P: 5, 2016).

The Health service and Products which is the ability of the supply chain, deliver services, account the quality assured medicines and health manners in timely manner; the second rated work is the Governance, Oversight and Management it is the quadrate and the effectiveness of the grants and implementations of the arrangements. These two parts is not run effective by the government (P: 5, 2016).

Kitgum NMS

Executive Summary:

“The Global Fund has signed a total of 20 grants amounting to USD 1 billion, USD 623 million of which has been disbursed to the Republic of Uganda since 2002” (…) ”Approximately 90% of grant funds are spent on the procurement, storage and distribution of health commodities. The Global Fund’s Pooled Procurement Mechanism buys the majority of the medicines and health products on behalf of the country, which has significantly improved procurement timelines and reduced commodity prices” (…)”Uganda has made progress in the control and treatment of HIV, tuberculosis and malaria with a reduction in new infections and/or incidence. However, if unaddressed, pervasive stock-outs of key medicines at all levels will result in treatment disruption for patients. Seventy per cent of the 50 health facilities visited during the audit reported stock-outs of at least one critical medicine, with HIV drugs being the most affected of the three diseases” (…) ”Differences of USD 21.4 million were noted between book and actual stocks at the National Medical Stores for 15 commodity types procured by the government and the Global Fund. The audit could not apportion the variance between the government and the Global Fund since the stores’ inventory system does not segregate physical stocks by source” (…) ”16.5 million condoms that should have been distributed for free were sold through social marketing. The funds generated from the sales (USD 0.2 million) remain unaccounted for” (P: 6, 2016).

Executive Summary Part II:

“The country’s change of HIV treatment policy and scale up plans have increased the number of patients eligible for treatment without a corresponding increase in government funding. This will result in a treatment funding gap of at least USD 90 million in 2016 if not addressed.

Consequently, the Global Fund is ‘front-loading’ commodities planned for 2016/17 to 2015 to address medicine shortages” (…)”Twelve per cent out of the 50 facilities visited were performing HIV tests with expired test kits and, contrary to national guidelines, 14% of facilities visited did not perform confirmatory tests on clients diagnosed as HIV positive. This raises the risk of clients getting false HIV results” (…)”The Secretariat, in collaboration with the Ministry of Health, has introduced data quality assessments. Vacant positions are to be filled to address the data related issues. However, funding for tools, training and supervision remains a challenge” (…)”There was also weak management of advances with some remaining outstanding for over 20 months. Value added taxes amounting to USD 0.3 million had also not been refunded to the programs. The audit identified expenses for which there was not adequate supporting documentation, amounting to USD 3.9 million” (…)”While the country lacks adequate funding to cover key activities, it has a low absorption of the limited grant funds that are sent to the country. The OIG noted that only 46% of funds disbursed to the Ministry of Finance between January 2013 and June 2015 had been spent at the time of the audit” (P: 7, 2016).

NMS Amuria

Pervasive stock-outs:

“70% of the health facilities reported stock-outs of anti-retroviral medicines and HIV test kits of between three weeks and four months” (…)”68% of facilities reported stock outs of anti-malaria medicines and test kits in the previous six-month period” (…)”64% of the facilities reported stock-outs of TB medicines of between one week and three months” (P: 9, 2016).

Use of medicines to treat other diseases: The audit noted that 32% of the 50 facilities visited treated 1,254 Hepatitis B patients with anti-retroviral medicines. The quantification of anti-retroviral medicines does not take into consideration their use for the treatment for Hepatitis B patients. This has contributed to stock-outs of anti-retroviral medicines for HIV patients who are the primary target of these medicines” (P: 9, 2016).

Gaps in HIV counselling and testing practices:

“Twelve per cent out of the 50 facilities visited were performing HIV tests with expired test kits” (…)”Contrary to national guidelines, 14% of the facilities visited did not perform confirmatory tests on clients diagnosed as HIV positive” (P: 11, 2016).

Inadequate and ineffective condom procurement and distribution processes:

“Condoms that should have been received in country in 2011 were only received in late 2013 due to a protracted procurement processes” (…)”Contrary to the grant agreement, 16.5 million condoms that should have been distributed to users for free were provided to Marie Stopes Uganda, a contractor, by the Ministry of Health and sold through a social marketing mechanism” (P: 12, 2016).

Abim Hospital 2014 P3

Subsidized anti-malarial medicines not accessible and affordable:

“Consequently, medicines are sold above the recommended price that is UGX 5,000 and not UGX 3,500” (…)”there is no instituted mechanism to ensure that the subsidized medicines are distributed outside the big cities to malaria endemic areas” (P: 12, 2016). “Key positions budgeted for under the Global Fund grants also remained vacant: for example, 17 out of the 43 pharmacists and HIV, TB and malaria focal points for the regional performance monitoring teams were not at post during the audit” (P: 13, 2016).

Difference between what they have funded to get and what they had at NMS:

Between Global Fund commodities issued by national Medical Stores and received by health facilities: The National Medical Stores inventory system indicated that 3.7 million test kits had been issued to a facility, but the facility recorded a receipt of only 3,000 kits. While the National Medical Stores indicated that the variance amounting to USD 2.41 million may be due to errors in the inventory management system, this could not be verified by the OIG auditors. The variance also affects the closing quantities based on the inventory management system and actual stock at the national medical stores” (P: 14, 2016).

“In-country quality assurance of medicines: The National Drug Authority charges 2% (amounting to USD 3.8 million from January 2013 to June 2015)39 of the “free on board” value of medicines and pharmaceutical products for in-country quality assurance. While bed nets and condoms had been tested, there was no evidence that medicines (including anti-malaria and anti-retroviral) supplied by the Global Fund were tested by the Authority” (P: 15, 2016).

Questionable value for money: Charges of USD 3.8 million (from January 2013 to June 2015) by the National Drug Authority for testing of medicines, for which there is no evidence that testing actually happened” (…)”Cancellation of an order for the purchase of HIV test kits under the Pooled Procurement Mechanism which has resulted in a loss of USD 427,500. The manufacturer has indicated that the commodities have already been manufactured and cannot be supplied to any other country due to level of customization requested by the Ministry of Health” (…)”Payments amounting to USD 254,921 related to value added taxes that has not been refunded by government” (…)”The implementers incurred ineligible payments amounting to USD 93,400. These related to payments for activities not included in the approved grant budget, or excess payments to service providers” (P: 19, 2016).

Mengo Hospital needs funds

Afterthought:

This here shows worrying signs as the Health Care and Global Funds is either not utilized or misused, understocked even when the NMS is supposed to have dozen of kits for instance. The amount of monies not allocated even when budget for. That is a normal issue for the Government of Uganda under the NRM-Regime.

Just like the condoms that was supposed to enter Uganda in 2011, arrived in 2013. That proves the ability of the government to stall the procurement even when they have donor-funding to get the necessities. One key issue is that health facilities are lacking the necessary medicines for the treatment of Tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS and Malaria. The planning for securing the allocations is also lacking, therefore the planning and allocations is missing even when the funding from Global Funds is there, showing that the transactions between the Government of Uganda, National Medical Stores(NMS) and the International Companies who make the kits and medicine. Another factor is the longstanding time the health facilities are without needed medications and that should be worrying for the Ministry of Health.

The worst thing about this is that people who need the treatment have to wait for it or not get it in time as the health care facilities do not have it. That is the thing that worries me while reading through it, seeing the person who needs the care and medicine not getting it. So the Government of Uganda, Ministry of Health and National Medical Store (NMS) has a decent job to do. Especially since the matter of making procurement procedure and facilitate together with the different parts of governments organizations to deliver to the patient at a facility or the pharmacy. Peace.

Reference:

The Global Fund – ‘Audit Report Global Fund Grants to the Republic of Uganda’ (26.02.2016) – Geneva, Switzerland.

President of Uganda: Yoweri K. Museveni – State of Nation Adress. (Tenker dette er spennende lesing!)

H.E. Yoweri Kaguta Museveni,
President of the Republic of Uganda,

At the Uganda International Conference Centre, Serena, Kampala, 6th June, 2013.

His Excellency the Vice President,

Rt. Hon. Speaker,
The Rt. Hon. The Chief Justice,
Rt. Hon. Speaker of EALA,
Rt. Hon. Prime Minister,
The Leader of the Opposition,
Hon. Ministers,
Hon. Members of Parliament
Hon. Members of EALA,
Members of the Diplomatic Corp,
Ladies and Gentlemen.

I greet you and thank you for all the positive things you have been doing since I last addressed you on the 13th December 2012, at the Special sitting of Parliament when I was talking about the Oil Industry.

My main concerns, as you may by now know, apart from peace, are socio-economic transformation of our society and economy and the integration (both economic and political) of the African continent.

In the battle for socio-economic transformation, I have identified the ten (10) strategic bottlenecks that I have been repeatedly talking about. Even yesterday, I repeated them to the East African Legislative Assembly (EALA).

They are: ending ideological disorientation; building the State pillars to ensure that the State is capable of governing people and protecting them; developing the human resource through education and the improved health for all; promoting the Private Sector, which is a more efficient vehicle for enterprise identification and growth rather than persecuting them as used to happen in the past; developing the infrastructure (especially electricity, the railways, the roads, ICT, etc); modernizing agriculture; modernizing services; integrating the African market to assist the Private Sector; and ensuring democracy.

As you can see, integrating the African market is part of removing the strategic bottlenecks that I, normally, talk about. The East African Community (EAC) broke down in 1977 because of the incompatibility between the principled Mwalimu Nyerere and Idi Amin. Investors, however, cannot invest if they are not sure of the market.

As soon as we had a chance to lead Uganda, along with Presidents Mwinyi and Moi, we revived the EAC in 1999. The EAC does not only aim at Economic Integration, it also aims at Political Integration leading to the creation of the Federation of East Africa. This is a commendable step. Rwanda and Burundi have also joined the EAC, thereby expanding the Union. We (Uganda) are also members of COMESA and we are working for the Common Market of the whole of Africa. A federated East Africa will belong to those wider markets as one Political Unit. Therefore, on the bottleneck of fragmented markets, on account of colonialism, we are moving well. We could have moved much faster but, nevertheless, this is good enough.

Since 1987, we started tackling the issue of the human resource development when we launched Universal Immunization with vaccines against six preventable diseases. These were: measles, polio, tuberculosis, tetanus, whooping cough and diphtheria. We have recently broadened the list to eight (8) vaccines, by adding the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) Vaccine and Pneumoccal vaccine (PCV). The additional diseases to be prevented by immunization are pneumonia, diarrhea, meningitis, human papilloma virus (HPV). If the Ugandans, individually and/or collectively, could add hygiene, nutrition and personal discipline (e.g. avoiding umalaya, alcohol, smoking and obesity), the total disease burden eliminated would amount to 80%. We would only remain with 20% of diseases and traumas to deal with.

Nevertheless, that residual percentage of diseases and traumas include accidents. These accidents are caused by reckless driving which contributes 20% to the hospital cases. I do not know where the water-borne diseases belong. Do they belong to hygiene or do they belong to their own category? The Ministry of Health will have to help me on this.

These contribute 20% of the sicknesses. Therefore, continued programme of providing safe water is a crucial element in disease elimination.

The district of Mukono recently came up with a good idea of buying its own borehole drilling equipment. This would enable them to make a borehole at a less cost compared to the money they spend when they private contractors. Even before borehole water is available, let everybody boil all the water that he/she uses. It is as effective as borehole water.

In 1997, we introduced Universal Primary Education (UPE), in 2007 we introduced Universal Secondary Education (USE) and we have now introduced free education for A-level as well as for vocational schools. In the coming budget we are going to introduce the Student Loans Scheme on top of the free education for the top 4,000 best performers admitted to Government Universities. The challenge, then, will remain, first of all, the diligent implementation of these schemes, eliminating all the corruption – especially the enforced collection of school fees. If you want voluntary contribution to the school, let the community contribute to the building of the school through labour. Then, those who are able to contribute in cash voluntarily could do so. Non of that should affect the student’s attendance.

The issue of lunch should also be handled in a voluntary manner – although my preference has always been for the parents to provide packed lunch in their own way (entaanda, peke, etc).

The second challenge with universal education is, then, giving the students vocational skills – technical skills as well as science education. One issue that is still lagging behind is the issue of maternal mortality. It is still 438 per 100,000. It must be brought down. What are the causes of this level of maternal mortality when we have got a health unit at every sub-county? When I was growing up in the entire district of Ntungamo plus Rwampara, there were only four Health Units at: Kinoni, Rubaare, Rwashamaire and, in 1959, Rwenyangyi or Kitwe, as I hear the present groups calling it, was added. In spite of these huge distances, I was born in the hospital in 1944 (at Mbarara), My sister Dr. Kajubiri, was born at Rubaare in 1949, etc.

That same area now has the following Health Units:

HC IVs 3

HC IIIs 11

HC IIs 25

Plus Itojo district Hospital.

All these total to 40 Health Centres in Ntungamo alone which in my time had only four Health units.

Therefore, the hardware facilities are there. What is not adequate are the soft-ware facilities; full staffing which we dealt with the other time. We decided that 19 health personnel be put at HCIV and 39 health personnel be at HCIII; female midwives instead of having men delivering women on account of our culture; underage marriages and pregnancies that turn children (abaana) into mothers (abazaire); etc. Let the Ministry of Health sensitize the population on these issues using the radios that spend endless time talking lies. The radios could be used positively to educate people about these challenges.

The remaining big health challenge is malaria. Malaria accounts for 40-50% of out patients and 20% of the inpatients of all the deaths in Uganda. We must get rid of the mosquitoes. There is the effort of bed-nets distribution. This is good. However, the real answer is to get rid of the mosquitoes through the use of larvicides. Our scientists are working on this.

I am, therefore, proud that the NRM has expended quite a bit of energy on the issue of human resource development – education and health – the very low base we started with notwithstanding.

Let everybody else do their assignment. Results will be much better. Even, however, with the failure of some of the actors doing their assignments, the results are good. That is why the population has grown from 14 million people in 1986 to 35 million now. That is why you can hardly see a youth or child below the age of 26 years crippled by polio. These are not mean achievements.

The other big bottleneck is infrastructure (electricity, the roads, the railways, water works and ICT). The issue of the underground and undersea cables has been handled. Telephones should become cheaper in time especially the international calls.

We are working aggressively on electricity, the railways and the roads. Karuma will be built. There is even the possibility that we may get good and cheap funding for it so that we can switch our own money to something else – e.g. the roads.

Karuma (600 mgws)
Ayago will be built (600 mgws),
Oryang will be built (392 mgws),
Kiba will be built (288 mgws),
Isimba will be built (188 mgws) etc.

We have got good offers for all these.

The railway will be built. We have got good offers from some reliable financiers. Besides, we have trained the UPDF Engineering Brigade to build the railways.

Some of the roads will be built by the use of our own money and others by financing from outside. The Minister of finance in her budget speech will give the details. I am, however, very confident that the infrastructure envisaged in the 2040 Vision will be built.

Then, there is our oil and gas. It has taken long because we have been haggling with the oil companies. Our plan is clear and unequivocal – it must include a right sized refinery of 60,000 barrels per day, built in two phases according to the dictates of the market.

When more reserves are discovered, provided the internal market so dictates, this refinery will be expanded. Although we did not, initially, have interest in a pipeline, our commercial Partners, the Oil Companies seem to have a big interest in it as do their financiers we are told. Their position seems to be based on their failure to understand the new dynamics in Africa and what was, previously, called the Third World. 

The groups in the West should know that this category of people categorized as Third World are an endangered species. In the next 50 years, certainly, Uganda will be a First World Country and a middle income country by 2017. You cannot have a country with 10 million of its children in schools continuing to be a Third World country for long. On account of their fundamental misunderstanding, they under estimate the consumption level of the Ugandans and their purchasing power. That is why they are desperate for a pipeline to insure their investments. They fear that they may invest and, then, nobody buys the finished oil products in Uganda.

Hence, the desperation for a pipeline. I have agreed to this re-packaging because, whatever the packaging, much of the money is ours – whether it goes through the refinery or through the pipeline. Of course, with this pipeline, the coastal countries deduct some money for transit and there is the fee for the use of the pipeline. Nevertheless, paralysis is also costly. We need the money to build our infrastructure and to do other important things.

I recommend that we all support the addition of the pipeline provided the refinery gets the first call on the crude oil if the internal and the regional market justify it. A number of groups have shown interest in building and financing the refinery.

Of course, oil and gas will also contribute to the electricity generating capacity of Uganda. These infrastructure projects will boost our growth and expand our GDP by a factor of 9%.

With the battle for an integrated market, for a developed human resource and for infrastructure going well as shown above, we need to conclude the battle on another front – a conducive atmosphere for the Private Sector-led growth. I call this concluding because we long ago started this battle in 1987 when we liberalized, de-regulated and privatized many activities in the economy. We put in place a Code of Investment and a one-stop-centre for registering and enabling investments to be implemented. The one-stop-centre has, however, never worked properly. I will insist that this Investment Authority becomes a real one-stop-centre. I will also bring amendments to the Investment Code to criminalize malicious sabotage of investments in Uganda.

The achievements and struggles enumerated above will be in vain if we do not attract and retain private investments. Nobody should obstruct private investments out of malice with impunity. A request for an investment should not take more than three days. Why? It is because these processes are well known. They are not new science for most of the time. What does a leather processing plant need, for instance? What does a maize milling machine need? Etc. Does it have those requirements or does it not? UIA, NEMA, should have these standard requirements and should be able to approve or disapprove quickly.

While market integration, the human resource development and the infrastructure development are enablers, the real wealth creation is effected and created by the Private Sector investing in real estate, services, manufacturing, agriculture, ICT, etc. Everybody must promote this and not obstruct or delay investment. It is the Private Sector that will create jobs, produce more goods and services for domestic consumption as well as exports and expand the tax base. The investors may be local or outsiders. They are all, however, doing one job of expanding the GDP of Uganda.

The ignorant but really subversive talk I normally hear must stop. You hear people talking of “factory y’omuyindi” – an Indian’s factory; or “factory y’omuzungu” – the European’s factory. When I was commissioning Coca Cola factory in Namanve recently, I told those present that there is not a single Muyindi’s factory or Muzungu’s factory in Uganda. All the factories in Uganda are Ugandan whether they are owned by Ugandan citizens or outsiders. If a Ugandan African built a factory in India, that factory would not be Ugandan, it would be Indian. Sometime ago, we had a Ugandan that was getting wealthy, the Late Chris Mboijana. He had businesses and properties in Kenya, in Mombasa. Those properties were Kenyan and not Ugandan. To prove they were Kenyan, when he died suddenly, I heard some wrangles about those properties but I could not easily follow up precisely because they were in Kenya and not in Uganda.

Apart from the small investments that will be attracted by the conducive atmosphere created by us, especially if UIA and NEMA correct their ways, there are big projects that we have for long been promoting without success. There are two in particular – the Phosphates factory in Tororo which will also produce Sulphuric acid and iron ore and the Muko iron ore near Kabaale. We seem to have, finally, identified capable investors who can get these huge projects going. These will add significantly to the size of our GDP and also feed into the other sectors of the economy – fertilizers into agriculture and iron ore and steel into construction, dam building, manufacturing, etc.

The sector that can reach many Ugandans and quickly is agriculture. Let us work on the 68% of the homesteads that were found by 2002 census to still be in subsistence agriculture. What is amazing is the lack of seriousness by many of our actors. Since 1996, we talked of a cluster of enterprises per household per zone – the 18 zones of Uganda. Where this has been implemented, the results have been dramatic – in the Bundibugyo area, in the Kanungu area, in the Kiruhuura area, in the Kapchorwa area. Yet the other day, when I was in Asia, I heard some of our people talking of Asian Model of “one product per village”!!! Maybe that is a good model. However, before you go for that model, what about our own model of several products per zone? Where it has been implemented, it has done miracles. Why not implement it elsewhere? Let each home of 4 acres of land do the following according to the respective zones: an acre of coffee, an acre of fruits, an acre of bananas and an acre of elephant grass or other pasture. In some variations, you can plant cassava, Irish potatoes or rice instead of bananas or you could have two acres of fruits instead of giving one acre to coffee. At the level of processing, you will then have all those products to deal with. In the courtyard, behind the house, you will, then, add chicken as layers, Pigs, Improved goats, apiary in one corner of the land and fish farming in the valley. Then, there are the six or so cows fed by animal fodder in the shelters (what we call zero grazing). This will work. It has already worked in some parts of the country.

There are two disappointments in the sector of agriculture and fisheries. One is the problem of over fishing on Lake Victoria and the other is the mismanagement of tick control in Uganda. African communities have been specializing in their respective activities over the millennia – crops, livestock, fishing etc. Normally, these specialized communities develop conservation practices that ensure sustainable use of these resources even in very difficult circumstances. These practices get ingrained in the culture. Banyankore, being cattle-keepers and crop people, have practices that have preserved certain activities, the neglect and discouragement by the colonial and subsequent governments notwithstanding. That is why the Ankore cattle, this bananas and the millet, for instance have been preserved. A Munyankore will, for instance, never slaughter a female young cow (enyena) under any circumstances. Even today, in spite of the commercialization of the economy that has forced Banyakore to sell female cattle, they still sell the middle aged ones (ejigija) and not the young ones (enyena).

I was sure that the Bassese and other fishing communities of Lake Victoria had such deeply ingrained cultural practices to preserve the resources of the lake. Who, then, was destroying the resources of the lake by eating the young fish? It is called mudeeke in Lussesse dialect. If only you allow the fish to survive for 9 months, it will have laid many millions of eggs. The lake will always be well stocked. Who, then, is so uncivilized, so unconcerned that he/she eats the mudeeke? I am beginning to get information that the people causing destruction to the resources off the lakes are not indigenous people around the Lake. That it is immigrants who come from other areas of Uganda and/or other parts of East Africa, push aside the locals and inflict such damage to our heritage. One thing I cannot compromise on is our heritage. Those who do not respect our heritage should not be tolerated. What should we do with this situation? We are going to discuss it in the cabinet and in the NRM Caucus and find a radical solution.

In the meantime, the many factories we attracted on Lake Victoria, 21 of them in number are closed or are operating far below capacity. This is not acceptable. Our earnings from fish had gone to US$ 196 million in 2005/2006, they have now declined to US$ 142.6 million in 2012/2013 because of these parasites. This is not acceptable. The Banyakore have a superstition regarding preventing lightening strikes (enkuba). It is called okugangahura. When the lightening damages something, the most indigenous resident of the area is the one that can perform the ceremony and rites that will stop the lightening from causing damage again. Riding rough against indigenous practices can sometimes, lead to serious mistakes. We should all assist the Minister Nankabirwa to solve this problem. It is a big shame. It is a type of suicide. Polluting the Lakes must also stop. People who dig gardens up to the edge of the lakes or the rivers should be stopped. The Minister of Environment should ensure that. I flew over Luzira Bay the other day. The whole lake is full of algae, a sign of pollution. This should also be addressed by the Minister of the Environment.

The other bad phenomenon is drug resistant ticks because of the laxity of the veterinary department. There are four categories or classes of acaricides. These are: Pyrethroids, the amidines, the organophosphates and the co-formulations. Each class kills ticks in specific ways. However, ticks develop resistance after about three years. The correct thing is to change to a different class after three years. Unfortunately, the technical staff never told us about this. We, therefore, ended up, including myself, using the same class of drugs for up to 15 years, in my case. When the ticks became resistant to the drugs, recently, the cattle started dying. Although the good news here is that the Ankore cattle and the other indigenous cattle are still immune to the tick-borne diseases. One of my cattle, Kiremba, was found with 154 drug resistant ticks and it was still up ticking and kicking. Anyway, I have moved from pyrethroids to the amidines and all the ticks have disappeared. We have instructed the veterinary people to sensitize the farmers on this issue. I, recently, went to Ireland (UK) specifically on this issue and the drug manufacturers have solution to these drug resistant ticks.

In any case, we are also working on vaccines with other African countries – such as Kenya and Malawi.

Yesterday, I read the malicious self-deception of the Daily Monitor. I am told that the so-called “The East African newspaper”, which is a sister to the Daily Monitor, was similarly jubilating that Museveni will have a hard time making the State of the Nation Address this year, because the things he talked about last year were not fulfilled. Of course, not all the things I talked about last year have been fulfilled because many of them take time and, in any case, the resources are limited. Does the Daily Monitor and the East African paper and some members of the opposition in the Ugandan Parliament, think that Ugandans cannot understand that? Mao Tse Tung once said: “It is still better if the enemy attacks us wildly and paints us as utterly black and without a single virtue; it demonstrates that we have not only drawn a clear line of demarcation between the enemy and ourselves but achieved a great deal in our work.” Therefore, it is a compliment when the Daily Monitor and the East African paper attacks us because it means we are right. However, unfortunately for the anti-NRM groups, Uganda is moving forward. The performance of the economy this year has been as follows:

GDP rate of growth is 5.1%;
Inflation rate is 3.6%;
Foreign exchange Reserves are US$ 3.3 billion;
Export earnings are US$ 4.9 billion;
Remittances from Ugandans abroad are US$ 767.26 million;
The total size of GDP of Uganda is 54.7 trillion shillings;
The total size of GDP in US$ (exchange rate) is US$ 21.2 billion;

This is reasonable given the difficult situation created by the past mistakes caused by the anti-NRM elements prior to 2011, when inflation went up to 30%. I said that the difficult situation will be reversed and it has been reversed. We are also resolved to resist firmly those who block investment programmes, delay development and when difficulties arise they turn round to criticize. The bottlenecks are clear to us. They will be solved partly using our money, partly using money from our Partners outside or through a sovereign bond using regular financial sources because Uganda’s credit rating is good at B+. Besides, our oil money is not very far off.

The evil of corruption is being handled. You saw what happened to the officers who were accused of stealing money in the office the Prime Minister and in the Ministry of Public service by holding ghost seminars, in 2011. In the past, NRM has handled bigger problems than bunches of thieving public servants. These are easier to handle. I promise to give a special address on corruption.

Madam Speaker, it will be recalled that the Second Session of the Ninth Parliament commenced on 7th June 2012. As at 14th February 2013, Parliament had been able to transact business as follows:

Bills passed – 11
Motions passed – 12
Reports considered and concluded by Parliament – 6
Petitions considered and concluded by Parliament – 5
Ministerial Statements presented to Parliament – 13
Other statements – 2
Questions for oral answer presented – 3

Among the Bills which Parliament has passed are the following:
The National Council for Older Persons Bill, 2010;
The Finance Act 2006 (Amendment) Bill, 2012;
The Income Tax (Amendment) Bill, 2012;
The Excise Tariff (Amendment) Bill, 2012;
The Value Added Tax (Amendment) Bill, 2012;
The East African Excise Management (Amendment) Bill, 2012;
The Uganda Communications Regulatory Authority Bill, 2012;
The Supplementary Appropriation Bill, 2012;
The Petroleum (Exploration, Development and Production) Bill, 2012;
The Accountants Bill, 2011;
The Geographical Indications for Bill, 2008;

In the coming session, the Government will present a number of Bills including the following anti money laundering Bill, Public Finance Bill, etc. The Rt. Hon. Prime Minister will communicate these Bills to you.

I thank you very much.

6th June 2013 – UICC, Serena

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