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Government of Uganda (GoU), World Food Programme (WFP) investigate Super Cereal issue in Karamoja (19.03.2019)

The Ministry of Health received an alert through its surveillance teams on the ground in Karamoja about suspected food poisoning and began investigations.

KAMPALA, Uganda, March 19, 2019 – The Government of Uganda and United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) are investigating whether there is a connection between recent illnesses reported in two districts in Karamoja and Super Cereal, a fortified blended food distributed by WFP for prevention of malnutrition.

On Tuesday, 12th, 2019, the Ministry of Health received an alert through its surveillance teams on the ground in Karamoja about suspected food poisoning and began investigations.

Some 262 people have been affected since 12 March with symptoms of mental confusion, vomiting, headache, high fever and abdominal pain. A total of 252 of those were discharged following successful treatment at health facilities in Amudat and Napak. No new admissions have been reported since Monday 18 March.

Seventy-seven of the 262 people were admitted in Alakas, Lokales and Karita health centres in Amudat district while 185 were admitted in Lotome, Lorengechora, Kangole and Apeitolim health centres and Matany Hospital in Napak district. The admissions took place between 12th and 16th of March.

There are unverified reports of three deaths, one of them at Matany Hospital, Napak District and other two in the communities. One male passed away in Lorengechora,Lookit village, Napak district and another female in Amuna village in Karita Sub County, Amudat district. All the deaths took place on 16th of March, 2019. The Government’s investigative team are in the communities to verify the two none facility deaths.

Samples of Super Cereal stocks and water were taken from the affected areas including blood, vomitus and urine from patients and are currently being analyzed at the Directorate of Government Analytical Laboratory and the Central Public Health Laboratory. Food samples have been sent to a laboratory in Mombasa, Intertek Kenya LTD and another in Johannesburg Intertek Testing Services, S.A. LTD, for further analysis. Preliminary results of the Government investigation are expected in the next 24 hours. While results from abroad are expected within the next 5 to 7 days.

The Minister for Karamoja Affairs, Mr. John Byabagambi, the Director General of Health Services, Dr. Henry Mwebesa, the Country Director of WFP, Mr. El Khidir Daloum, and officials of the Uganda National Bureau of Standards visited the affected villages, in Amudat and Napak district on Monday 18 March, and spoke to the affected people and health workers. The team found that the problem remains localized in only two of the eight districts of Karamoja.

Investigating teams from the Ministry of Health and WFP food technologists remain on the ground carrying out surveillance and epidemiological mapping to establish the associated factors and possible causes of this recent illness.

On Friday 15 March, WFP, working with the Government, ordered the immediate suspension of Super Cereal distributions in Karamoja and the refugee hosting districts where it’s distributed. This is as a precautionary measure until investigations are concluded. WFP is working with district authorities to retrieve all Super Cereal stocks from health centres and communities.

An intensive communications campaign is ongoing, advising people not to consume SuperCereal until further notice. Communities have been advised to observe proper hygiene and sanitation, for example through handwashing with soap and drinking boiled water.

Working through Government health systems, WFP has provided Super Cereal in Uganda for more than 10 years. The current coverage of Super Cereal is at 252 locations in Karamoja in addition to many sites across the 13 refugee hosting districts. Refugees receive Super Cereal in the general food basket.

Super Cereal is also distributed in many countries and has a robust record of fighting malnutrition and protecting pregnant or nursing women against malnutrition during the first 1,000 days of their child’s life. Super Cereal undergoes all the verifications of quality control before being distributed. No previous complaints have been reported about the product in Uganda.

Super Cereal is a key component in WFP’s support to the Government’s nutrition programmes that aim to prevent stunting or life-threatening malnutrition.

The goal of The United Nations World Food Programme is saving lives in emergencies and changing lives for millions through sustainable development. WFP supports governments and works in more than 80 countries around the world, feeding people caught in conflict and disasters, and laying the foundations for a better future.

The Ministry of Health, Ministry of Karamoja affairs and WFP commit to conclude all investigations and share results with the public.

We appeal for calmness as investigations are going on and request the communities to report any suspected illness to the nearest health facility or call our toll free line 080010006.

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The State of Health service delivery and financing: CSO perspectives (17.03.2019)

WFP stops distributing blended food in Uganda as people fall sick in Karamoja (16.03.2019)

Opinion: Mzee, its your system that let the Minister’s sleep!

Do not blame people and their attitudes: the problem is not corruption or greed, the problem is the system that pushes you to be corrupt. The solution is not, “Main Street, not Wall Street,” but to change the system where Main Street cannot function without Wall Street.” Slavoj Zizek

That this is an issue now isn’t strange. The National Resistance Movement have run the Republic since 1986. The growing amount of cronies, corruption and filled with useful idiots around the President. The President are clearly acting out. The NRM knows this, because they have made the entitlement, the ones who are eating, but not talented or anything. They are appointed, not on merit, but by either family or loyalty. That is why the Ministers and Presidential Advisors are like they are.

President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni knows this perfectly well. He could have sacked all of them. The growing level of the Cabinet, which is about 81 Ministers in total and 146 Presidential Advisors. They can all chill-out, as they can rarely be changed or even sacked. Cannot remember that in a long while. If something is happening, there are some minor changes or they end up in the NRM Party Organizations, like Dr. Tanga Odoi ended up with NRM Electoral Commission for the Primary Elections. That is how the NRM does and the President knows. Therefore, there are no need to overwork or do to much. Because, there are no sanctions or such. Since they are all secured and eating as they are in office under this President.

Many of my ministers are sleeping. They are selfish and only think about themselves. Ugandans know how to listen if they are told the right things, that is how we managed to build the Movement by learning and listening to others” Yoweri Kaguta Museveni while addressing investors during the sixth Presidential Investors Round Table (PIRT) at State House on the 8th February 2019 (Misairi Thembo Kahungu – ‘Museveni: My ministers are selfish, sleep on job’ 08.02.2019, link: https://www.monitor.co.ug/News/National/Museveni—My-ministers-selfish–sleep-job/688334-4971964-60mn1qz/index.html).

There are reasons why they are sleeping. There are Ministers for small or minor Ministries with Micro-Budgets, where they have a lax mandate or not even enough Principal Secretaries or Organization that matters to fulfil the work they need. The Ministries are inter-connected and doesn’t have the funding or the manpower. As there are so many Auditor General reports, where the open post of lacked hired staff comes up, again and again.

There are so many systemic defects, but surely that is done deliberate by the President. As he offers the most funds to the Ministry of Defence, State House, Office of the Prime Minister and so on. The others are getting less, as well, as the amounts of funds that goes to pay back loans that the state has collected. This is known, as the deficit are filled not with donor funds, but loans, which they are now paying more and more by every year.

The President can complain about his Ministers. But he appointed them and trusted them. He has made their positions and made them responsible. They are supposed to answer to him and follow the mandate the government have given them. The possibilities to do so, are made by the budget and funds given. Also, the strategic and willing to let them develop it. However, the President usually goes for quick fixes and not for long-term planning, as his erratic micro-management style. That is well-known. As well, as the President always blame others, but take all CREDIT.

Therefore, this President is not someone who will stay behind his people, but push them to the crocodiles, if they are not doing their thing or if they become to ambitious. Certainly, the President can complain, if they don’t do enough. He should sanction the ones or give them a carrot to act. Peace.

Bank of Uganda: Monetary Policy Statement for February 2019 (07.02.2019)

Preparation for General Election 2020/21: When these budget posts are served extra-funds!

As we are aware and since the National Resistance Movement (NRM) dropped their Road Map for the General Election of 2020/21, the whole system has started to flair up for it. Both with Electoral Reforms and other measures, to secure swift results in favour of the President and secure his cronies. That is just the way it is.

As we will see in the Budget Framework Paper for Financial Year 2019/2020, the government and their agencies are clearly gearing up for elections. As the NRM wants to make sure the appointed and anointed get their cut ahead of scheduled elections.

The first ones whose secured and getting well funded is the Residential District Commanders, they are getting 5,5bn shillings to promote government policies. There is also estimated right before the elections, the state will go from 128 districts in 2018/19 to 135 districts in 2019/2020, there the state has to use more on them just for the need of new RDCs too.

To give RDCs possibility to do their work, the Office of the President has asked for 25.4bn shillings to buy 165 Double Cabin Pickups, but there is only small fry for what is coming up.

The State House itself is gearing up, as the Office of President has asked for an allocation of 741.1bn shillings.. Just to give a feeling of the changes of gear, is that in National Budget Framework for Financial Year 2018/19, alone, the State House got 265,342bn shillings. We can see a significant change ahead of the coming elections.

To top it off, the logistical support, welfare and security to H.E the President, Vice President require 118.38bn shillings. Therefore, the Presidency, the State House and everything concerning that is much more expensive in Election Times and ahead of campaigns. As proven by the Report delivered to the Parliament.

This are just small pieces of what the Committee and what Jesca Ababiku MP delivered the Parliament, as requested to secure funding and also more funds to certain aspects. As it is fitting the elections and the timing for more cash to certain places. We saw it before the General Election in 2016 and is seeing it now. Repeating itself, getting budget for cars and more expenses paid. More funding to the State House and President. Just as programmed. To think otherwise is to be blind to what is up.

This is just what they do, not building institutions or such, but buying to time to linger in Office. Peace.

Reference:

REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON PRESIDENTIAL AFFAIRS ON THE BUDGET FRAMEWORIT FOR F’Y 2OL9/12O – 2023/2024, Parliament of Uganda, January 2019

OPM Refugee Scandal: Reloaded!

You would think that the Office of the Prime Minister, who is in-charge of the Refugees in Uganda, would trade the waters carefully, after the last year scandal of thousands upon thousands of ghost refugees. Which the OPM and the state was cashing in on. No, no, no, they are having yet another scheme, as the government are planning to misuse the refugee crisis in the neighbour countries to their advantage. The National Resistance Movement (NRM) have no trouble doing so.

The Prime Minister Dr. Rugunda Ruhakana has clearly not lost the touch of deception or lying to the International Community for a buck. Here is yet another scheme made up to make the numbers sky-rocket!

More than 1000 Ugandans living in areas neighbouring Kyangwali refugee settlement were forced to attain refugee status in order to retain ‘ownership’ of their land. The scheme was reportedly crafted by Charles Bafaki, the principal resettlement officer in the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM), Jolly Kebirungi, the camp commandant Kyangwali refugee settlement area, in the newly created Kikuube district and Lutaaya Vianney from ministry of Lands” (URN – ‘OPM forced Ugandans to register as refugees in Kyangwali’ 02.01.2019, link:https://observer.ug/news/headlines/59562-opm-officials-forced-ugandans-to-register-as-refugees-in-kyangwali).

With this in mind, the government are putting lives in jeopardy, making the citizens play as refugees, and not being citizens themselves. Supposed to seek refugee in a camp instead of living their ordinary life. This in a way to get higher numbers of refugees and more need of aid to take care of them. If this isn’t misusing resources and also reckless behaviour against own citizens. Nothing is. This is what Steady Progress means in the NRM land.

The OPM are already known for inflating numbers, but now they cheating also by making Ugandan citizens into refugees. That is really ensuring the UNHCR and all agencies for fools. As the GoU and OPM have no trouble risking their own citizens as pawns in a scheme to secure funding. While, also using this scheme to scare locals of losing their land, if they didn’t play along. That is how far they take it.

No mercy, no problems ensuring suffering for people, as long as the OPM secures more funds to itself. Peace.

WHO Director-General applauds Uganda’s Ebola preparedness response (03.01.2019)

Kampala 3 January 2019:- The Director General of the World Health Organization (WHO DG), Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has lauded Uganda for the Ebola preparedness response mounted, so far, in the high-risk districts of the country.

Dr Tedros said that Uganda’s disease outbreak response system is recognized globally for its effectiveness. He commended the government for the support rendered during the ongoing vaccination exercising, saying, “The vaccination exercise will go a long way in saving the lives of frontline health workers and health care workers and we are really grateful for the government’s commitment and support.”

He made these remarks at a meeting held at the Office of the Prime Minister where he met key government dignitaries including; the Prime Minister- Right Honourable Dr Ruhakana Rugunda; Minister of Foreign Affairs- Hon Sam Kuteesa; Minister of State for Defence and Veteran Affairs- Hon Bright Rwamirama; Ministry of Health Permanent Secretary-Dr Diana Atwiine and other government officials.

He highlighted the appreciation by Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) of Uganda for the support in the ongoing outbreak response especially regarding capacity building in Infection Prevention and Control and cross-border screening and surveillance.

Dr Tedros emphasized the need to amplify Primary Health Care (PHC) in Uganda in order to prevent diseases among the population. He added that health promotion and prevention of communicable and Non-communicable disease are key to achieving Universal Health Coverage (UHC).

The Prime Minister of Uganda, Right Honorable Dr Ruhakana Rugunda appreciated WHO’s endless support to Uganda, saying, “Whatever Uganda has managed to achieve in public health is because of the general leadership of WHO.”

He noted, with concern, the ongoing Ebola outbreak in DRC, and commended WHO and partners in the response for braving the harsh conditions to save lives. “Your hard work and sacrifice do not go unnoticed”, he said.

Dr Ruhakana also highlighted the importance of PHC to Uganda. “We have no choice but to support PHC. It is the key to tackling many of the afflictions we are getting”, he said. He committed the government to achieve UHC in Uganda.

In the wake of the Ebola outbreak that is affecting the Eastern part of DRC close to the Uganda-DRC border, Uganda is implementing a series of activities to ensure that the country is protected from the Ebola outbreak or able to control the outbreak in case of a confirmed case in Uganda. These include vaccination of frontline health workers, screening of travellers at the points of entry, risk communication and community engagement, enhanced surveillance including community-based disease surveillance and cross-border surveillance. Other activities include the collection and testing of blood samples from alert cases, capacity building for case management, psycho-social care and capacity building for safe and dignified burials.

The meeting was attended by government officials, the media and officials from WHO headquarters and WHO Uganda country office.

UN Experts Report expose illegal Gold Export to Uganda!

Again and again, the UN Experts are getting validated sources of mineral exports, which are ending up in the hands of the Gold Refinery in Entebbe, Uganda and ending in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. These stories continues, as the National Resistance Movement (NRM) and President Museveni are taking advantage of the lack of authorities and control of the borders. That is why the Ugandan can get the illicit gold and earn fortunes of the trade.

They are forging documents and doing so by tricking customs and ways. To ensure, the gold goes from Bukavu to Entebbe into the hands of the AGR. The company, which happens to run by Gen. Salim Selah, the brother of the President. The State House of Uganda is earning fortunes on the illicit trade of gold and forging the gold sources even.

Take a look:

In addition, the Group found that Ugandan authorities lacked a coherent policy to combat smuggling. The Group also found that Kampala-based gold exporters did not have an efficient system to avoid the contamination of their supply chains with illegally traded gold from the Democratic Republic of the Congo” (…) “In fact, documents concerning a supplier for AGR obtained by the Group show the risk of contamination of the supply chain with gold illegally sourced or traded from the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The supplier, a Congolese national based in Bukavu who provided AGR, in October 2018, with gold worth more than $3 million, travelled with an official document, delivered five months earlier, identifying his occupation as that of an electrician. The supplier declared to AGR that the gold was sourced from the United Republic of Tanzania. Initial investigations conducted by the Group suggested that the individual was used as a broker by many Bukavu-based gold smugglers” (UNSC, 2018).

We have seen these stories before, its still vital and important to show, yet more evidence of the illegal export and illicit trading of the Congolese gold through Ugandan exporters, which happens to be in connection with the President and his brother Gen. Selah. This is common knowledge, but has to be addressed. As the ownership of the AGR is known and also, how that implicates the State House.

This is just a few statements of what they do, but still enough to prove how they do it. As this is very fresh reports and just out from the UNSC and their experts. Peace.

Reference:

United Nations Security Council (UNSC) – ‘Letter dated 18 December 2018 from the Group of Experts on the Democratic Republic of the Congo addressed to the President of the Security Council’ (31.12.2018)

AG Byaruhanga tries to make a bribe into a donation: Per President Order!

Do not act as if you had ten thousand years to throw away. Death stands at your elbow. Be good for something while you live and it is in your power.”Marcus Aurelius

Today, Attorney General William Byaruhanga delivered his Interim Report on the indictment and the criminal charges of Patrick Ho in connection with Minister of Foreign Affairs Sam Kuteesa and President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni. This has been known now and if these was just mere charges, than the Chinese National wouldn’t get charged and sentenced in a United States Court.

This is because the Chinese National offered a bribe of 500,000 USD each for a possible Oil Deal for a Chinese Company in Uganda. Therefore, the Chinese National made it possible for the high-ranking officials in the Ugandan government to solicit half-a-million United States Dollars for it. That is why we are here today. This was signed off as a Campaign contribution, but by that time, the President had already been re-elected in 2016. We know this, but has to say all this before I quote the Interim Report. What is special about the case too, is that the government will claim the Foundation owned by Kuteesa, but has anyone seen it outside of a paper and a registered entity outside of Uganda Registration Services Bureau (URSB), which it was in 2015. That is why today is special, because a ghost entity got good money for a possible business transaction… that would favorable for the repentance, which happens to the Minister and President.

What is also important to state, which is already white-washed in the interim report, is the delivery of the bribe. That went through customs, which was mailed between the Chinese National and the Minister. Who both combined their efforts to send the money and deliver it in cash, in secrecy, as it was intended to a favorable transaction. Not something that was supposed to end up in Court Documents in the United States and incriminate one, while implicating the high-ranking officials in Uganda.

With that in mind.

The quote:

The Foundation received a sum of US$ 499,993 on 9’h May 2016 from a Hong Kong-based NGO known as China Energy Fund Committee. The money was a donation to the Food Security and Energy Sustainability Foundation which Hon. Kutes a and his wife started as a vehicle for enabling Hon. Kutesa to continue to champion some of the causes he had spearheaded during his tenure as the President of the General Assembly of the United Nations with respect to the 17 Sustainable Development Goals”.

While that quote is special and says a lot, it does trying to clear the implicated Minister in the Corruption Scandal that has rocked the man. That the Auditor General did this on direct order from the President. This was to ensure the President and his ally Kuteesa got off the hook. That is why the Foundation and the “donation” we’re the Chinese National had reasons to give there. Like we are naive.

The Foundation is just based on paper. There are no proof of their work or whatever their supposed to do. Certainly, they are servicing some special and unique unicorns, sorry, ghosts. Because, this money came by plane from the United States to Entebbe International Airport, as it entered the Customs as warned to the parties involved.

So, I have a hard time believing the AG in this matter, as he is trying to figure out a way to clear he Minister of his implication, per order as a loyal subject of the President. Who also got money in the transaction done by the Chinese National. They all know this.

Time for the AG get his act together, unless he is a blind soldier for the President. Peace.

Reference:

Interim Report of the Auditor General on Allegations of Bribery against Hon. Sam Kuteesa, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in Connection with the Trial of One, Mr. Chi Ping Patrick Ho, A Chinese National, In the United States

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