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Black Monday!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012 - 14:37

 

Oooh Uganda! May God up hold thee. Indeed. When Kakoma was composing the Ugandan Anthem, he had in mind that at a certain time, a Ugandan like me and you, would need this line of the Anthem, for motivation and encouragement to carry on. At this rate of public fund theft, we lay our future in thee hands.

The level of corruption in my country is beyond my understanding.

Could we blame Winston Churchill who referred to Uganda as the Pearl of Africa that attracted a lot of people’s attention to the many resources that we have as a country? Certainly not, he was simply appreciating the beauty that Uganda posses; the natural vegetation including Mabira Forest that is almost finished (thanks to the greedy ones), the good climate and the beautiful scenery; the wonderful people that we are. I stand to be corrected.

Why would I work diligently for 5o years and never get my pension? Many Ugandan have worked diligently for over 40 years well knowing that they are pensionable. But when the time comes for their benefit they spent a quarter of their pension on operational costs of getting this money. That is, if they are lucky enough to get it. I always heard how hard it is for one to get their pension - yet easily deducted from ones salary.

Now I see where the money is going.

To people who are working hard to create ghost individuals that seem to need the money more than the owners. How are we going to eradicate poverty when the dependency level is high? Because the old men or women are going to stay dependant of their children and grand children, simply because they have not got their pension.

As I visited Kitgum during a Nodding Disease Caravan to deliver the little that we had collected to support the children. Anyone with a heart would not see those children in pain and dying,

yet it is practice in my country that thieves are stealing money meant for health and nothing is done!

The state of the roads... I took a caravan to South Africa by road, from Rwanda, to Burundi, Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Botswana and South Africa.

None of those 9 countries had worse roads than my country.

Our public education... overcrowded class rooms, very poor teacher pay, very low completion rates. My experience in University... we had issues with Lecturers striking time and again due to poor funding from government. Government sponsored students pay would never be remitted on time as they thrived on the private students pay to run the university, which definitely compromised the quality of delivery.

Even as the major sectors like health, education, roads are facing numerous funding problems, corruption, or theft of public resources is the order of the day.

I spent sleepless nights advocating and campaigning for increased funding to the education sector. The heads in the news the next day was

How the Office of the Prime Minister officials ‘stole’ Shs100m daily.

I can not help wondering what has happened to the conscience of so many Ugandans who are willing to steal for their families at the cost of thousands of Ugandans. Corruption has become such a usual thing that people even joke about it. As the primary pupils sat their exams, someone wrote an alternative joke examine that seem to reflect the state my country is in. One of the popular questions was

 what is the alternative name of a thief in Uganda?

a)      Kazinda (A former Senior accountant at Prime Minister’s office)

b)      Government official

c)       Member of parliament

d)      All the above.

A Ugandan would give you the answer to that question without thinking twice. Sad that the above question actually reflects the level we are!  

Corruption has become a side dish meal to people holding government funds.

The greedy and the ungrateful people who think they are more equal than others.  What mentorship and parenting is that for the young generation? With all due respect, what moral authority does a parent who has been convicted for corruption have in disciplining their own children? As commonly said “an apple does not fall off an orange tree”

That is what gets me worried. That right now, we have to alter that saying for us to reclaim our country from the shameless thieves. It is my responsibility and yours to have apples fall off oranges trees.

This is the reason last Monday was Black, to mourn the theft of government resources at the cost of poor Uganda tax payers.

I dedicate Mondays to the many Ugandans who have lost lives as a result of greed, but also call upon all Ugandans join this cause as it is only together that we can ARREST these thieves!