Is the government out of touch with Ugandans?
On July 20, Sabalwanyi addressed the nation on burning issues including the severe economic crisis facing most Ugandans and the deteriorating security situation. Ugandans expected him to announce concrete and credible steps to address many serious issues facing millions of starving people in places like Karamoja, where hundreds have died or are dying of hunger and malnutrition. .
In this context, wananchi expected a lot from the president on Wednesday. Did he deliver or not? That’s the six million dollar question.
According to an article titled “Museveni offers no solution to rising commodity prices” published in the July 21 Daily Monitor, President Museveni has provided no short-term solution to soaring fuel prices and food that Ugandans struggle with. While invoking the Bible, he said Ugandans should walk the narrow path that would lead them to salvation.
Sabalwanyi argued unconvincingly that government interventions, such as cutting taxes or providing subsidies, would cause Ugandans to continue consuming without saving, thus throwing the country into more trouble.
“Because when we subsidize, people will continue to buy more and more. You’re going to create artificial comfort for people to think things are normal when they’re not and you do that by bleeding yourself out,” he said.
Most Ugandans feel their government is out of touch with the objective realities the wananchi face on a daily basis. In our sister and neighboring country of Kenya, President Uhuru Kenyatta, who seems to sympathize with the wananchi, has done the exact opposite of what is happening in Uganda.
President Kenyatta has given Kenyans a fuel subsidy, reduced the cost of household electricity by 15%, reduced cooking gas prices and drastically reduced the price of maize meal.
Many Ugandans wonder why their own government has steadfastly and stubbornly refused to follow the example of the government of Kenya. I believe the answer lies in the presence or absence of good leadership.
If good leadership is “the art of motivating a group of people to act towards a common goal”, President Kenyatta has motivated and does motivate Kenyans to work hard to achieve the economic, social and other goals that his government has settled down. Kenya.
Many countries, both developed and developing, have made similar interventions to help citizens cope with life during difficult times.
Uganda has sadly degenerated into a tale of two countries, one rich, prosperous, happy and well fed; and another country which is poor, despised, desperate, miserable and neglected.
Most Ugandans I have spoken to in the Far North, particularly in West Nile, feel that the government does not really care about the plight and suffering of the wananchi. Three key sectors that affect and touch the lives of the vast majority of Ugandans, namely education, agriculture and health, are in shambles as they are not prioritized by the government and grossly underfunded.
I would like to urge Parliament, as the voice of the Ugandan people, to take the initiative and seize the opportunity to come to the aid of Ugandans, especially the wananchi, because Uganda’s digital asset lies in its resources human beings, most of whom are desperate and helpless and need a compassionate and helping hand to face the constant challenges.
Let us be our brother’s keeper and not adopt the callous and negative attitude called individualism which is contrary to traditional African culture and values. There is a time for everything. Keep faith and keep hope.
Mr. Acemah is a retired political scientist and career diplomat. [email protected]