Uganda Steadily Marching off 2019 in Peace, Stability and Progress
The year 2019 is coming to a peaceful end, with Uganda steadily marching off in stability, national unity, democracy, freedom and an all-round progress, contrary to the alarmist assessments that the collective opposition made at the beginning. At the time, taking false advantage over insecurity, murders, robbery with violence, and widespread economic uncertainties especially among the vulnerable urban poor, unemployed youths, and rural folks, the opposition believed that sudden and sad end of NRM and President Yoweri Museveni had approached.
Nevertheless, as signs of goodwill it is important to wish all Ugandans including political adversaries a happy and peaceful festive season, in the hope that we have all learnt from our follies in the year ending, and pledge to honestly have self-introspection for a better Uganda in the years to come. If we each started 2019 with big plans that haven’t materialized, now is the time to assess why they failed, and adopt new measures to do better.
While the NRM leadership pledges and is committed to doing the very best according to its ability, it doesn’t pretend to being most perfect in delivering public service by any measure or that perhaps it doesn’t commit mistakes. However, the NRM doesn’t over-idealise expectations which may kill many dreams and is always open and the first to admit mistakes or shortcomings when they happen. NRM has already suffered from some of the perfectionism and setting itself standards that are so high which haven’t been met, and has now learnt over the years of painstaking to set modest targets that are achievable within our national means.
The opposition has throughout 2019 tried to spread fear and stoking antiestablishment resentment with the main objective of frightening many Ugandans that the NRM government has failed to deliver on its core mandate of providing peace and security, economic growth, stability and development, and predictable freedom, rule of law and democratization.
Through combinations of mischievous schemes, including working with foreign groups, the opposition sought to dent NRM’s credibility in the hope that they could isolate the NRM and leadership especially President Museveni from public trust. These schemes have failed miserably as evidenced from the fact that NRM is actually attracting more defections including high profile leaders from the opposition into its ranks. The opposition has completely failed to attract any defection from the NRM, except the indisciplinados, political opportunists and rubble rousers seeking attention while seeking shelter in the NRM.
Instead, and to their shame, 2019 has seen NRM government deliver the highest number of factories slightly over 40 of varying sizes of investment net worth and jobs. President Museveni commissioned ten, eight, six, and four factories in Buikwe, Nakaseke, Mukono, and Tororo respectively which are creating varieties of goods, services, an estimated eight thousand new jobs, and revenue to help bridge Uganda’s trade deficit with trading partners as well as partially solving import substitution. The delivery or launch of construction works on a number of projects including the 183MW Isimba dam, Soroti-Moroto (103km), Musita-Namayingo-Busia (104km), Olwiyo-Gulu-Acholibur-Kitgum (167km), and Kapchorwa-Suam (77km), Muyembe-Nakapipirit (148km) roads among others improved countrywide connectivity, reduced travel and business time as well as costs. In addition, many modern ferries to facilitate water transport were also delivered. 2019 also saw government successful revival and launch of the national carries, the Uganda Airlines which is steadily gaining ground in the regional market. Furthermore, government both directly and through utility providers has been able to deliver, extend and improve clean and reliable water and electricity accessibility to the countryside that had hitherto remained unserved. Government also kept and achieved most of its targets in health and education especially construction, accessibility, enrollment, and continuous quality improvement. And while many areas of Uganda remain unserved, with continuous effects, Uganda’s vision of a middle income status for the majority and socio-economic transformation shouldn’t be a distant dream if each person played their individual roles at family level.
On the security front as the opposition groups seek to spread more fear, despondency, and public mistrust against government, it is evident the police and other sister agencies have accomplished so much in the year ending including heightened vigilance, installation and massive rolling out of the CCTV cameras and prompt response to incidences breakdown in law and order.
Without seeking to airbrush NRM failures on corruption and flip flop in policy discussions, 2019 has been a good year upon which we should fortify 2020 that the opposition shouldn’t penetrate even if they come with avalanches of toxic falsehoods for the general elections. Clearly, the tide is very much against the collective opposition that doesn’t have credibility in the public eye, getting desperate and could fight dirty. However, the NRM should be warry of the public sense of betrayal and not allow it to spread because an angry population could vote with its feet having believed the whining lot as happened in Zambia against Kenneth Kaunda in 1991 when he polled a paltry 24 against Fredrick Chiluba’s 75%, and UNIP has never recovered. Otherwise enjoy the festive seasons and 2020.