Kakira Sugar Limited addressing farmers strike (02.07.2018)
I write what I like.
“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.
I know that Thomas Joseph Odhiambo (Tom) Mboya was a vital politician in the first part of the independent Kenya. He was a charismatic person, who even got himself on the front-page of the Time Magazine in 1960. His assassination in 1969 are still unanswered, like so many other extra-judicial killings. But that should not overshadow the impact and the wisdom of the man, who helped to form Kenya after Independence. He was part of the Kenya African National Union (KANU) and worked together with Jomo Kenyatta.
His words in this speech, should not be a fading memory, but something that the leaders of the continent should have worked upon. Since some of it has already been proven to be right. I myself wished it was different, since the trade-imbalanced with the former colonial states and the other developed countries. Therefore, the knowledge he had should be enforced now. As there are to many generations who has been lost and hasn’t gotten what they deserved. Here is the pieces of the speech that should be taken to heart.
“Meanwhile, we in the poorer. countries are faced with a rapid growth in population and’ with the standards of life demanded by the. Masses. It has been calculated that a 1% increase in the per capita income of an industrialised country increases the demand for. food and raw materials by only 0.6%, but that the same increase in per capita income in a country importing manufactured articles will lead to an increase of 1.8% in the demand for imports. Super imposed on this has been a tendency for the terms of trade to move against the less developed countries. Unless we in Africa build up quickly our domestic services of supply for enough of the industrial products which are required for the modernization of our countries, we will either become increasingly” indebted’ to and “hence” politically dependent on foreign countries, or have our. progress undermined by balance of payments difficulties” (Tom Mboya, 1966).
“Whatever industry we attempt to build the same sort of problems, arise an accurate knowledge, of natural resources is required. Although there is much more to be learned we already know that we have in Africa the natural resources to feed a vast range of industries. Cheap energy has to be obtained. While Africa is rich in energy resource only a fraction of them have been harnessed. Industry cannot grow without efficient transport, but we can get ourselves out of’ the vicious circle since new transport links can themselves be justified in strictly commercial terms by the specific development possibilities now opened up, These three subjects natural resources, energy and transport are Vitally important, but they are not on the agenda, of this Conference” (Tom Mboya, 1966).
These words from Mboya, should be cherished and remembered, as the powerful statement it was. That the will of development on own terms was key and that they could not continue with a trade deficit with the developed countries. This has happen since because the loans, the grants and direct aid from the developed countries to the African continent. That has been a paradigm to control and assess the situation in terms of donors, not on the governments who got the funds. Therefore, the circle of aid and donor aid prospered instead of industrial development and other shifts of supply.
There been many other factors as the leadership and the cronyism has eaten budgets and donor aid. We could have hoped the past had listened to Mboya, that the states and republic’s could have followed this. To build nations on dependent on donors, that in the end will work for their own benefit and not for the African development. They will use the aid and donor aid for their own gain and personal benefit for their constituents, not for the African republic. In an ideal world it would be different, but looking through history and you can say otherwise. Since the development aid and the slums are still there, where Tom Mboya left them. The poverty Mboya saw and discussed are there, the names of the streets and nations might be different, but the troubles are the same.
Tom Mboya spoke wisdom and that should be recollected and not forgotten, not only his vital role in Kenya, but beyond. Mboya’s words here should be discussed and used to change political and trade imbalances to benefit own republic’s, federations and kingdoms of Africa. The states deserves to stop the deficit and also develop themselves on their own terms. That is something they have deserved all along, but the International organizations, Multi-National Financial Organizations and Development Banks has stifled this with their creeds, their protocols and their agreements with the state. To get needed funds they have to open economy and stop government subsidizes to support local production in agriculture and industry. So, the history of the neo-colonial Africa, had deserved to follow the paradigm shift Mboya spoke of in 1966. Peace.
United Nations – ECONOMIC COMMISSION FOR AFRICA AND CENTRE FOR INDUSTRIAL DEVELOPMENT – Symposium on Industrial Development in Africa, Cairo, 27 January – 10 February 1966 – SPEECH BY TEE CHAIRMAN OF THE ECONOMIC COMMISSION FOE AFRICA THE HONOURABLE TOM MBOYA MINISTER OP ECONOMIC-PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT, KMYA, AT THE OPENING OF THE INDUSTRIAL SYMPOSIUM, CAIRO, 27 JANUARY, 1966
“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).
Rule, Sheila – ‘UGANDA, AT PEACE, IS FACING ECONOMIC BATTLES’ (28.01.2017) link:http://www.nytimes.com/1987/01/28/world/uganda-at-peace-is-facing-economic-battles.html
State House Uganda – ‘President commends Uganda – IMF collaboration since 1987’ (27.01.2017) link: http://statehouse.go.ug/media/news/2017/01/27/president-commends-uganda-%E2%80%93-imf-collaboration-1987
Warnock, Frank & Conway, Patrick – ‘Post-Conflict Recovery in Uganda’ (1999)
World Bank – ‘Report No. 7439-UG: Uganda – Towards Stabilization and Economic Recovery’ (29.09.1988)
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.
256BusinessNews – ‘Government to issue statement on sugar’ (11.05.2017) link:http://256businessnews.com/government-to-issue-statement-on-sugar/
Gucwaki, Yosam – ‘MASINDI RDC IN TROUBLE OVER STOPPING SUGAR CANE BUYERS’ (28.04.2017) link: http://mknewslink.com/2017/04/28/masindi-rdc-trouble-stopping-sugar-cane-buyers/
Stanbic Bank Uganda – ‘Ugandan economic growth continues at start of second quarter’ (04.05.2017) link: https://www.markiteconomics.com/Survey/PressRelease.mvc/143ca2b8e3d84c79b96aed4885b7337e
URN – ‘Sugar manufacturer’s association explains price hikes’ (14.04.2017) link: https://dispatch.ug/2017/04/14/sugar-manufacturers-association-explains-price-hikes/
URN – ‘Uganda: Sugar Crisis On for Another 2 Years – Manufacturers’ (09.05.2017) link: http://allafrica.com/stories/201705100129.html
Uganda Media Centre – ‘President Praises Madhvani Group’ (05.05.2017) link: https://mediacentre.go.ug/news/president-praises-madhvani-group
“Museveni: My critics always forget to mention that I was democratically elected, the others were not. Everyone in Uganda can challenge me, everyone can vote, the elections are free. Not many countries have achieved what we did. One third of the seats in parliament are reserved for women, five seats for youth, five for workers, five for the disabled and 10 for the army. How many democracies with such a record do you know?” (Koelbl & Puhl, 2016).
Just as the knowledge of the all the state businesses and properties of President Museveni that he has amassed over the 31 years in power in Uganda. It reminds more and more of the state of affairs under President Mobutu. Mobutu Sese Seko was a dictator that President Museveni was proud to ouster and reinstate President Laurent Kabila in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). So that President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni knows about Mobutu’s fatal fall, is certainly known.
President Museveni has gotten rid of other dictators before the fall of Mobutu, he even knew or had knowledge of the death of the plane of Juvenal Habyarimana, the plane who got shot down in April 1994, as his fellow comrade General Paul Kagame of Rwandan Patriotic Front was on the way to overthrow the current regime there. Also that the President Museveni together with President Milton Obote overthrew President Idi Amin in the late 1970s. So the current President Museveni has been involved in lots of armed change of power, he is even rumored and not verified if he had knowledge of the death of John Garang of SPLA and the South Sudan.
Still, the man who has used force and taken weapons to change history and his own fate, again and again, also to get puppets in states around. Have certainly thought of the demise of the men he got rid off. So when the stories of the last year of Mobutu sounds like this:
“For 32 years President Mobutu has treated Zaire like a toy and used its rich mineral reserves like his own private bank account. He plundered its mines, insisting their entire annual profits be transferred to personal accounts overseas” (…) ““We had to be close to the regime to do business,” admitted Mohammed Abdul, a Lebanese businessman yesterday as he fortified his shop for an expected pre-Kabila pillage by Zaire’s ruthless and brutal army. The Lebanese are hated by Zaireans who believe they colluded with President Mobutu to plunder the country’s diamonds” (Kinshasa, 1997).
“The decision by the Swiss Federal Council came a day after judicial and police authorities seized his luxurious villa at Savigny near the lakeside resort of Lausanne. The 30-room mansion is estimated to have a market value of more than $5 million” (…) “After three decades of plundering the mineral wealth of his country, Mobutu is believed to have accumulated an enormous fortune. There have been persistent reports that he has stashed as much as $4 billion in Switzerland, but a government review of the country’s 400 banks last week said that none reported having accounts in his name” (Drozdiak, 1997).
Just as you think the dictator of Democratic Republic of Congo would be different than the current one in Uganda, your terribly wrong and President Museveni tries to keep it hidden, the way he is using the state reserves on himself and build his wealth. Just like President Mobutu was trying to move the money to the Swiss accounts, President Museveni has his own way.
A look into Museveni:
“The way the Museveni family is paid royalties, or rent, by escrow accounts for their ownership of the title deeds of the Stanbic Bank business name in Uganda (what was once the Uganda Commercial Bank, Uganda’s largest banking group) is the way it is paid for their ownership of other apparently South African or foreign-owned businesses in Uganda” (…) “These sources say that it is Stanbic Bank that is used to finance businesses like Roofings Ltd, Speke Resort Munyonyo, the J&M Hotel along the Kampala-Entebbe highway, businessman Hassan Basajjabalaba’s hotel and Kampala International University, all of which actually belong to the Museveni family” (The London Evening Post, 2012).
This is just the business side of it, it could be worse by now and they could own more pieces of all the businesses that are bailed out or even getting tax breaks by the government, because who knows the true deeds or royalties going to accounts owned by the royal Ugandan Museveni family. So the next says more about the value of the Museveni family and their estates.
“Museveni’s wealth includes ranches in Rwakitura and Kisozi Uganda which accommodates over 2,000 healthy cows which produce thousands of liters of milk daily. The Uganda president makes at least Ush 100 million per month from his farm” (…) “Apart from livestock farming, Museveni has interests in real estate, hotel industry as well as transport industry. He has also invested heavily in the banking industry” (…) “The longest serving president of Uganda is estimated to be worth $ 700 million” (Venasnews, 2016).
So when you see how the Museveni family has become as wealth and rich as President Mobutu did. Mobutu had after his 30 years of dictatorship stashed away US$ 4 Billion into Swiss Bank Accounts, what is more uncertain is the total value of the 30 years President Museveni rule in Uganda. What is right now and known is the businesses that the President is involved in or having ownership in. Secondly is the knowledge of estates, as well as ranches in Uganda with livestock that the President owns. Therefore, the extended wealth of secret bank accounts and not revealed businesses could show the true value of the Museveni family.
With the knowledge of this and the sudden departure that President Museveni together with President Kagame, as they forced the dictator away in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). I don’t think there will be an intervention on President Museveni from one of the neighbors. Still, the world can see the dictator protocol is kept by Museveni as he himself have crafted ways of emptying the state coffers. Therefore, that the riches, the estates and the value of Museveni have risen over the three decades in power isn’t strange. What is more worrying is how he has been able to keep is wealth and ownership.
That President Museveni wishes to look like a hardworking rancher and that he works for his fortune. The yields are coming from hard-work and dedication. At the same time the ownership in banking industry and in other parts of the economy shows how much control the family and the President does have. The private industries and companies are run or ordered directly from the State House.
So that President Museveni said this in 1997 as he overthrew Mobutu is now insane:
“Mr. Museveni’s ideology is simple. For too long, he says, African politicians have hoodwinked the common people, manipulating tribal sentiments to stay in power and steal millions of dollars in foreign aid and taxes. A former Marxist, he sees the true struggle on the continent as one between corrupt leaders and the dirt-poor people they exploit” (McKinley Jr., 1997).
So he said for to long African Politician played the commoners, using the sentiments of tribe on their populations and using this tools to stay in power, while doing so taking an emptying the state reserves and donor funding to themselves. Therefore, 20 years since he stood for this and said these words, he has now done the same.
President Museveni of today would assassinate himself or overthrow himself… since he is now the Mobutu of Uganda, he has the character of the men he overthrew in past. He should be worried, because the ghosts of the past and the reckless leadership will follow him and that is why he trust the guns more than people. Since his own insincere political game might catch up with him.
On some levels now, there aren’t much difference between President Mobutu and President Museveni. Peace.
Drozdiak, William – ‘Swiss Freeze Mobutu’s Assets; Reports Put Worth at $4 Billion’ (18.05.1997) link: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/inatl/africa/zaire/swiss.htm
McKinley Jr., James – ‘Uganda Leader Stands Tall in New African Order’ (15.06.1997) link:http://www.nytimes.com/1997/06/15/world/uganda-leader-stands-tall-in-new-african-order.html
Kinshasa, Mary Braid – ‘Mobutu takes the money and runs to a safe haven’ (16.05.1997) link: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/mobutu-takes-the-money-and-runs-to-a-safe-haven-1261945.html
Koelbl, Susanne & Puhl, Jan – ‘’This Is Our Continent, Not Yours’ (10.06.2016) link: http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/interview-with-ugandan-president-yoweri-museveni-a-1096932.html
The London Evening Post – ‘Revealed: How the Museveni family owns Uganda’ (03.01.2012) link: http://www.thelondoneveningpost.com/comments/revealed-how-the-museveni-family-owns-uganda/2/
Venasnews – ‘Yoweri Museveni Salary and Wealth’ (27.06.2016) link: https://venasnews.com/yoweri-museveni-salary-and-wealth/
“Millions of Congolese have lost their lives in a conflict that the United Nations describes as the deadliest in the world since World War Two. Rwanda and Uganda, invaded in 1996 the Congo (then Zaire) and again in 1998, which triggered the enormous loss of lives, systemic sexual violence and rape, and widespread looting of Congo’s spectacular natural wealth. The ongoing conflict, instability, weak institutions, dependency and impoverishment in the Congo are a product of a 125 year tragic experience of enslavement, forced labor, colonial rule, assassinations, dictatorship, wars, external intervention and corrupt rule. Analysts in the film examine whether U.S. corporate and government policies that support strongmen and prioritize profit over the people have contributed to and exacerbated the tragic instability in the heart of Africa” (Documentary Channel, 2016).
We are living in a day and age where leader’s doesn’t leave from their office. You have likes of Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasongo who is making himself ready for another election in his country this year and he has been in power since 1979. You have the likes of President Paul Biya of Cameroon who has been the President since 1982 and was in government since 1970s. In Zimbabwe the President of the day President Robert Gabriel Mugabe has been the Commander in Chief. And the list goes on.
We have the third term phenomenon of President Pierre Nkurunziza of Burundi, President Paul Kagame of Rwanda both of them have changed the laws or used Courts to allow them to stay in power. So the leadership roles are sufficient to stay. You have the likes of President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni who has been in charge since 1986 and stayed ever since, changed laws again and again to linger in power and is rumored to fix the age limit to stay passed his 7th Term.
So with this in mind, I will discuss it today. It is not a new phenomenon or a new change of guards. There are always leaders who linger and overstay their time in power. As President Juvénal Habyarimana of Rwanda took power with a coup d’état in 1973 and was in power until his plane got shot down in 1994. Just like the overthrow of first President Patrice Lumumba of Democratic Republic of Congo in 1965, who by foreign powers supposed to install Mobutu Seko Seko Kuku Ngebendu Wa Za Banga who was born Joseph-Desire Mobutu who was the President of DRC from 1965 until 1997. So there are leaders of the past who has not left office and is now long gone.
The issue with this is the way we build society around people instead of institutions and government structures. The Structures of government is kept weak and is not strong with procedure and predicated work for the civil service. That is why the leaders can linger and the way they keep it is fueling resources away from the government structures and institutions, keeping the progress weak and keeping the circle around them tight knit. Instead of having inner-circles with wits, knowledge and people who wants to succeed in their field; the leaders around the president is instead hungry men and woman who works for more and better civil service for the citizens.
That is because the leaders who circle all of government around themselves are not interested in great policies or deliver the promised pledges to the communities since then they have to give away power. When a leader tries to strengthen the power all around themselves then the necessary leadership is not about the government, but about the person who rules. The ruler set the standard ,not the laws of the state or the laws of the Parliament. As the Executive can fix the Supreme Court, Constitutional Court, can rig the Constitution and make draconian laws that issues more help for the Executive; instead of the Constitution and the Parliament representing the citizens and for the citizens it becomes for the Executive.
That is why the Executive or the Ruler, the President doesn’t want to leave power since the whole state is built around the one person. The One Person who has in his image or her image built the government around themselves. And when they have it all for themselves they don’t have to fight for anything else then themselves. That is what matters, if he schools is depleting, health care is non-functioning, roads have bigger potholes then the ones on the moon, the government loans are worse than the subprime-mortgage and so on. That doesn’t matter because the situations doesn’t hit the Executive, because the government funds goes directly to him instead of the ministries, departments and sections of government than really-really need it!
The Power that starts with personal movement of fights and liberation, the ones that are personalized towards the one man who saved them all and then doesn’t leave is that the EGO and used to be center of attention. To have the voice of being right, so they can’t do things wrong in their own mind as they risk to lose their wealth and strength if they are out of office.
Some of these leaders have lived on the strength of the loyalty to foreign powers as they need their alliance in a region to secure peace in the neighbor country or during the cold war as the Americans did whatever they could to control the world and not lose nations to the Soviet communism. Therefore they fall of Said Barre of Somalia and the struggles of the Ethiopian Dirg of the 1970s. As the Cold War complex policies dissolved and built governments with influence of American and Russian strengths of the time. Take the example of President Mengistu Hailemariam who kept the Power from 1974 – 1991 with the Soviet influx and the Communist agenda that made the result of Somalia invasion with support of the Americans in 1977. So he himself had taken power in 1969 in Somalia the army fueled government of Said Barre as his power-play internally to keep the power together with the back and forth from the leadership at the time led to his fall, as he also had long-term squabble with Ogaden and Ethiopian neighbor after the tried invasion there. This the fall after 20 years might be because he circulated all power amongst himself and not in the powers of structures and department to delegate the powers.
That is the problem with the leaders who get fueled with power. They circulate all power and decisions are under the Executive. So with this in mind instead of building institutions and government structures, they build the armies and police force to enforce the Power of the Executive, not only to enforce national security, but to secure the Power of the Executive. Therefore the first to get payment are the armies and police officers before the teachers and other civil servants.
The Rulers and the Executives keeps the ignorant yes-men around them to secure that they don’t get to opportunist or wanting to get the Executive position. Therefore they elite around the Ruler get lots of perks, tax-exemptions, cars, housing and servants while the rest of the country can’t afford that. Unless it is foreign investors in businesses owned by the Party Elite or the Government elite that belongs to the inner-circle of the Executive; as the license and openings happens on the watch of the Executive and the Power not the legal justice system or the society binding corporate bondage towards the procedures of setting up business in the country. So the way the Executive get drunk on power is set on the fact that they having everything at nearly no cost.
The Presidents who are drunk on Power have centralized all powers around them and not the government structures and the decrees and the policies are made to keep them in power; not to build a grand state who offers their citizens what they need. Therefore the laws becomes for the MPs and the Elite that fuel the money and Power towards the President, then the President delivering to the People.
So with the Inner-circle finding ways to support the President instead of serving the citizens as a government is supposed to do. Why are the Executive and rules high-on-power you asked?
That is because all of the Power, all of the resources and all of the goodwill of the nation is determined by the Executive. As the Power is resumed and determined by the Executive there is hard to leave that, as the knowledge of the system given to coming new leader can take away what the Executive already have built around itself. Therefore the security of having the power instead of giving it the next; that is why the lingering Executives and Presidents are like alcoholics!
Let me explain why the similarities are there. An Alcoholic has the hunger and need for another drink and beer. They do whatever they can to get another drink and beer, at all means and steal if they have to get that fizz. So the Alcoholic is so used to the alcohol that the feel of it weaken and needs much of it to feel it. The Alcoholic just need another brew and another brew. And never stops taking in the alcohol. In the beginning the alcoholic never think that they would end being so, and the same with power-hungry individual. It just became a habit. The alcoholic needs the alcohol, just as the Executive is drunk on power and needs some more drinks. The Executive gotten so used to and the habit of getting their will and generating the funds out of the governmental funds; so if they don’t get more the donor-funds or the Bretton-Woods Loans to their nations then they feel something is missing. They need the spotlight to be the king of the nation and the supreme ruler.
So the drunkenness and needed attention, the needed judgement and decision rate from the Executive that lingers in powers while they build the government system around themselves and weakens the people around them. So they are more needed and so that ambition gets squirrelled around them. There can only be one vision, one leader and one nation under God. That is the usual factor and the events that unfold as the dissidents and opposition get harsh treatment without any cost spared. Something that happens because they crossed the territory of the Executive and the rules of set-up by the President and the predicated actions are seen as violations of laws and constitution; that apparently been rigged in favor of current leader. Therefore another bottle of beer for the President as the sufficient drunkenness of power is staggering. Suddenly change would be hard and taken with haste. Because the drunken leaders will with force and madness go all-inn if they all of sudden loose it, they will be become bush-warriors or stealing elections to continue their Presidency. As we have seen through 2015 and 2016 that is how far these leaders goes to get the shot of power and not stop drinking from the fountain of government power. Peace.