The outcome of the elections means the time has come to make a complete overhaul of the policies
The general elections are over, and the country is waiting for Yoweri Museveni to be sworn-in again as President of Uganda for the next five years until 2021. People who were not successful and are not contented with the outcome are taking the matters to Court as the constitution of Uganda clearly stipulates.
Just before and after the elections, voices were heard, and are still being heard, from Ugandans all over the country for peace and peaceful co-existence. It is unfortunate that since Feb. 18, there have been terrible incidences of bloodshed and death in many areas of the country.
After going through 20 years of political instability from 1966 to 1986, Ugandans now firmly believe that they will not do anything that will destroy what they fought for and they will not do anything that will destroy what they have built.
President Museveni has been in power for 30 long years. People can see what he has done and thank him for that. At the same time Museveni saw what happened in the country during the election campaign and he has seen how his party, NRM, was badly defeated in Kampala and some other areas of Uganda.
What has happened has cleared resulted in a big clarion call from the People of Uganda to President Museveni to bring a “second Fundamental Change”. I have heard this from different People speaking on the FM radios in Kampala. I have heard the same from people in the taxis, and from people in rural Kyaggwe, Mukono District.
The defeat Museveni and his NRM suffered in some parts means the time has come for the President and his team to make a complete “engine overhaul” of their policies and the handling of people.
Kampala, for example, is the “money circulation centre” for Uganda and it is the biggest collection of all tribes of Uganda, and other nationalities. Most earn a living as street traders. Some are Baganda who came to Kampala because in 1988 a viral disease destroyed their coffee in the villages. The only alternative was to come to Kampala.
But crackdowns on their kiosks in and around Kampala by KCCA left them helpless. I think KCCA and the government should now design and build modern and attractive kiosks and place them in the areas where the African type kiosks were destroyed. People who have been jobless in Kampala will use them to earn a living.
Another policy could be that every Saturday, vendors and poor People should be allowed to sell their goods on Ben Kiwanuka Street in Kampala from Bombo Road down where it ends when you are approaching Shoprite. Each vendor could pay Shs 2,000 to KCCA for cleaning that street. There is no point in harassing old women and mothers who are selling tomatoes and vegetables in the evening at the Old taxi Park or the New taxi Park. The evening is the right time for them to use that space for economic gain.
The same could be done for taxis. The Government and KCCA should demarcate permanent parking stages for the taxis, all along Kampala Road from the Electoral Commission to Wandegeya and back from Wandegeya to the Electoral Commission.
The government should copy the City of London system so that, for example, when a taxi from Mukono, Luzira, Namugongo, Wandegeya arrives at a stage, passengers get out of the taxi and it takes off immediately to the next stage. It should not stay there to wait for passengers. Another taxi which follows will take those passengers who will have converged there after the first taxi has gone. The traffic police can very easily control this system.
That way the passengers will know where to wait for the taxis and at the same time the taxis will not be stopping here and there to pick passengers. The parking for taxis should be demarcated in such a way that a person does not walk for a long distance to get to the next stage.
There is no logic in the current system whereby taxi driver pays Shs120,000 per month to KCCA to allow them operate in Kampala, yet there are no places demarcated for taxis to park and offload passengers.
Finally, all of us Ugandans want one thing; to develop our country. All the presidential candidates promised this during the campaign.
On Sunday, Feb. 28, I heard Pastor Joseph Serwadda and two other pastors of the Born-Again Faith, calling upon Museveni to form a Government of National Unity so as to avoid problems in future in Uganda.
Every Sunday morning, these pastors speak on the famous Impact Radio of the Victory Church, in Ndeeba near Kampala. They speak mainly on religion, politics, economic development, and social life.
It is my view also that we are still poor and all of us want to “eat”. But I support a “Government of National Unity” instead of a “Coalition Government”. I support this because in a “Government of National Unity”, once there is a disagreement or misunderstanding among the parties in government, the parties that join the winning party simply resign from the government. The government continues with the winning party in power. But if it is a “Coalition Government” and the parties disagree, then the government automatically collapses. We, therefore, have also to consider that the country may not have the resources to hold another Election before the five years elapse.
But I have also observed for four years now that the advisors of President Museveni have failed to tell him the truth on many things. I consider this to be the right time for President Museveni to have a serious and effective Think Tank to advise him. It must be composed of men and women of high standing in society and command a good knowledge in different areas in leadership and economic development. They must be People who are fully contented and comfortable in their social life and have absolutely no desire to become Members of Parliament or President. They must be People who fully understand Uganda and the needs of the people. They should not in any way have political leaning to any political party in Uganda. There could to be two, a man and a woman, from each of the four regions of Uganda, making a total of eight members of the Think Tank. Their identity could also be kept secret and they could meet the President regularly to review reports from the secret service agencies and other information gathering entities.
Kavuma-Kaggwa is an elder from Kaggwe, Mukono district.