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With our oil, we must build a `welfare state’

By Kavuma-Kaggwa

With the oil and gas money we should provide completely free education, health and health

We are now swimming in an extremely massive financial catastrophe following the stopping of the donor funding amounting to Shs930 Billion which was being given to our country every year by European countries and Canada.

We thank God that we have permanent huge hidden treasures of oil and gas in the Bunyoro Kitara Kingdom.

A huge Oil refinery is being built in Bunyoro to be followed by an oil pipeline to Mombasa. With all that our oil will soon be on the world market.  We shall be earning an enormous amount of revenue in foreign currency annually. I propose that with that money, we must build a welfare state. There is no way we can fail to do that if the money is properly handled by the country’s leadership and the people concerned.

Since the stopping of the donor aid, in form of cash, the country has been faced with numerous problems concerning the teachers’ salaries, the doctors’ salaries and Makerere University has been with similar problems because of lecturers demanding 100% salary increment. We never had such problems before when the donor cash was flowing in full speed like the waters of River Nile.

All of us remember, according to the Holy Book, that when Abraham had wholeheartedly offered his son for sacrifice to prove that he loved the Almighty God, a voice came from Heaven ordering him not to do it and instead look on the right side. He did that and there was a sheep which God had given him to sacrifice.

Now God has given us the enormous oil and gas reserves which we must exploit and get money to turn Uganda into a welfare state and we are going to do it.

We, opinion leaders, do not address people at public rallies, but we write in the newspapers and give out to everybody our ideas for developing this country. What is good here is that what we write is everlasting for generations and generations to read and eventually implement.

With the oil and gas money we shall make Uganda a welfare state by giving completely free education, starting with secondary and university education. This will be for a period of ten years and after that it will be free education from primary up to completing University.

This will be for all Ugandans without discrimination of any nature. The Parliament will pass a law directing and allocating 20% of the oil/gas revenue for free education to the people of Uganda.  A Ugandan student in a private university will be given 50% for a period of ten years and after that it will be 75%.

Secondly, we shall provide free medical treatment of all kinds to the people of Uganda and the national parliament  will enact a law directing and allocating 20% of the oil/gas revenue annually for free medical treatment of citizens.

All private hospitals will be given 5% out of the 20% for a period of ten years and the 20% will cover all the hospitals, government and private.  Thirdly, we shall modernise all government hospitals with ultramodern equipment like the ones in India, UK, Australia, South Africa, Germany and USA, so that there will be no need for a Ugandan big or small to  go outside Uganda for any treatment. All doctors, consultants and experts will be paid high salaries so that they serve well in their country.

The exercise of modernising our hospitals will require employing experts from the countries I have mentioned above who will be responsible for installing the modern equipment.  They will also be responsible for training and preparing the local doctors to take over after a period of ten years.

I urge all the people of Uganda to come out and support this plan. I urge all Members of Parliament, those of NRM and the opposition to support this plan and one of them should bring a Private Members’ Bill in Parliament on this matter.

I urge President Yoweri  Museveni and all his ministers to support this plan and put it in the forthcoming Manifesto for the 2016 General Elections.

What is required now is for the government to establish very quickly a system of registration.

We want all children born in Uganda who are not in school yet and those already in schools in nursery up to university to be registered throughout the country so that when the `Free Education Department’ is set up in the near future, this information will be ready.

KAVUMA-KAGGWA is an elder from Kyaggwe, Mukono District

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