Published by ACFIM on

Expectations from the newly sworn in government

President Museveni arriving at the Kololo ceremonial grounds for the swearing in ceremony on 12th May, 2021.(Photo Courtesy of Voice of America)

The newly sworn-in government that rides on the “Securing your future” tagline has hoarded a lot of expectations placed on them by Ugandans because of the promises laid out in their 2021-2026 manifesto. These including:

  1.  Jobs and wealth for all Ugandans
  2.  Achieving the middle-income status
  3.  Delivering education, health, and water
  4.  Ensuring justice and equity
  5.  Protecting life and property
  6.  Achieving economic and political integration

Even though many of the expectations from the previous term were not met, some Ugandans still anticipate that the week-old government will deliver this time.

On ACFIM Talks last week, Muganga Ambrose a member of YouthConektUganda put forward his expectations from the recently sworn-in government. He mentioned that the NRM government had set up several well-intended economic empowerment projects such as operation wealth creation, Youth livelihood program, Uganda women’s entrepreneurship program, Emyooga in the previous terms.

However, implementation of these programs was futile with funds allocated to these projects embezzled. On top of this, the suspected culprits are not held liable for corruption.

“Corruption is still one of the biggest challenges of this regime. We have a bloated public administration system. We don’t even know how soon government agencies will be streamlined.” Muganga commented.

Much as the NRM government promised to fight corruption in the previous term, there have been no substantive results despite the presence of all these institutions mandated to fight against the vice such as the State House anti-corruption unit and the Inspectorate of Government (IG) that for over a year has not had an Inspector General of government-appointed.

The president has instead created a pile structure that has simply duplicated roles yet corruption remains at an all-time high. Mr. Muganga added that corruption begins in the electioneering process where people invest a lot of money in elections and expect the money back with interest once they get into office. He also stressed the need for campaign finance reforms to bring in capable leadership and real democracy.

Mr. Muganga cited how the COVID-19 funds had been misappropriated with no one charged. Corruption remains unsolved and to fight this, the government should get rid of the so-called “untouchables”. He anticipated that such scandals would not emerge in the new government and advised that the president be more vigorous in tackling corruption.

On the matter of youth, emphasis was put on the government’s need to acknowledge that the youth are equally important in contributing to the economy. The panelist proposed that for the newly introduced parish development model, supervision must be youth-based and not left to the Chief Administrative Officers who are usually older and are not familiar with youth problems.

In agriculture, Mr. Muganga applauded the NRM for the increased mechanization in the sector but only hoped that in the new term, more effort would be put on value addition as well.

Failure to preserve human rights was one of the major shortfalls of the NRM government in the just-concluded term characterized by brutal arrests, gruesome murders, unlawful detention tainting the regime’s image both abroad and on the local scene. Mr. Muganga explained that the government needed to value and handle their citizens with dignity and respect in the new term.

Day by day, Uganda’s economy is dwindling with a distressing debt portfolio, citizens are being taxed to the bone marrow and yet the taxes do not translate into service delivery. Mr. Muganaga recommended that government should regulate the economy and provide incentives for SMEs, local enterprises, and not only foreign investors. He also proposed more effort in fostering regional integration and trade in order to widen Uganda’s market.

Mr. Muganga accused the NRM government of making political ministerial appointments that degrade the performance of the ministries. He conclusively suggested that for the new term, specialized technocrats be appointed instead because they are knowledgeable on how to run the ministries.

If you missed this episode, click here to watch the full show. 

Categories: Newsletters

1 Comment

Abel Eseru · May 19, 2021 at 8:12 pm

It’s high time the NRM gov’t prioritizes fighting corruption, not just by talking but by walking the talk. Corruption has become a cancer that is corrosively stagnating Uganda’s Progress.

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