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Will Uganda’s National Development Plan translate into progress?

26 Mar

Recently during a face book debate, Mr. Tracy Kagarura made the following appeal: “The National Development Plan 2010-2011/ 2014-2015 has very interesting plans for our country…Please read and contribute to developments in our mother land Uganda.”

Response by Mr. Godfrey Kahangi:

I have located the NDP as a pdf file at http://www.finance.go.ug/docs/NDP_April_2010-Prot.pdf.

For those who want an overview of the economy of Uganda, look at http://www.finance.go.ug/docs/An%20overview%20of%20the%20national%20econ…omy.pdf.

Tracy, just to note, National Development Plans are just that, stated goals. The translation of such plans/goals into activities into realizations requires more than just optimism. This is why Uganda needs to elevate its skill level at top echelons from Peasant Management to 1st World Management.

To date, most of the ‘talk’ is purely to motivate the peasants to vote for NRM. There is also something close to revisionism, since M7 tried to pin all election rigging on NRM. There is also escapism, as M7 tried to validate much of Gaddafi’s militarism and instead just blame the west. For your information, I don’t wholeheartedly support the west’s activity of bombing and destroying Libya, to remove Gaddafi, but the last person to speak of should be M7, who with Uganda oil is definitely in the radar of the western powers. If the Chinese premier visits Uganda, we can only give M7 2 years before his reign is in jeopardy.

Uganda doesn’t need a Museveni and Museveni doesn’t have the administrative strategic skill to manage the transition from third world to first world. And, any economist would have advised him that it is not possible to transition to first world in 5 years, from $1200 ppp to $15,000ppp!!! It is empty rhetoric that is designed to excite, and doesn’t have much basis. Even if Uganda had $20bn/annum revenue from oil, the time to set up the infrastructure, the skills development, and the economic activity to raise Uganda to a first world economy would not permit this in under 15 years.

Tracy, at the very least, the NDP I have seen is a policy statement (which is much better than what the FDC have to show for their desire for power). But it is not enough. For the past 10 years, similar NDP’s have been produced and Uganda has not translated them to their stated goals. As such, I agree with you that “The National Development Plan 2010-2011/ 2014-2015 has very interesting plans for our country” and this is my contribution.

Other responses:

Christine Lubwa Oryema Lalobo:

‎Tracy, I do not see any difference between the current National Development plan and that of 1990/91 to 2004/5 that would make me or anyone excited about a drastic improvement in the delivery of social services and support of economic development for Ugandans?

With the illustrious development plan in place how come that the fuel, food and prices of all commodities are skyrocketing by the day? Can anyone explain to me the linkage between The National Dev’t Plan 2010-2011/ 2014-2015 and the quality of life of Ugandans whose income are being eroded by inflation faster than the exploit of Pheidippides?

Tracy, if the cost of items keep on the trend that we are witnessing, all of us have to brace ourselves for a very tough time ahead.

Godfrey Kahangi,  I would like to thank you for the response to Tracy concerning the NDP. Incidentally Uganda is not in the position that it is today for lack of plans, policies and programs. Most of what you read in these illustrious documents remain intact on the very papers on which they are written and never see the light of day…I would not raise the hope of citizens unduly till we can get to the root cause of the inadequacy of launching the NDP and setting it rolling.

It is good though to internalise the documents as they gives one a framework of expectation and dreams…and that benchmark against which the successes and failures can be measured…

Stephen Twinoburyo:

I was looking at this explanation of an economic bubble:

“Economic bubbles have been around since the birth of currency. Created by a wide range of factors, from excessive monetary liquidity to plain old human greed, exuberance and stupidity, they can be described as a trade in products or assets valued far higher than they should be – which is inevitably followed by a crash in prices.”

A thought just came to me, can Uganda ever suffer an economic bubble in its present state or we only have political bubbles? Is Museveni a political bubble and if so, has he overstretched his turgidity?

Godfrey Kahangi :

Stephen, I agree with you that Museveni is a political bubble, much like Mubarak. Interestingly General Tito of Yugoslavia was also a political bubble, since on his demise the nation splintered into many parts and many atrocities were committed in the process. With such like Museveni and Gaddafi, when they are no longer in the leadership, they leave anarchy and chaos in their wake.

Stephen Twinoburyo:

True Godfrey. I also think another reason that makes Museveni a political bubble is that he’s over-inflated. Any slight puncture as we saw with Mubbarak or Ben Ali will render him completely useless. This is a characteristic of strongmen. They thrive on creating an air of invincibility and being the alpha to omega of everything but inwardly they are hollow. People who are not political bubbles are those that are humble but yet a lot is achieved through them – like Mandela. So yes I agree, Museveni is a political bubble.

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2 Comments

Posted by on March 26, 2011 in Stephen Twinoburyo's blogs

 

2 responses to “Will Uganda’s National Development Plan translate into progress?

  1. Twino Speaks

    March 26, 2011 at 22:30

    More facebook posts:

    Grace Ssuuna:

    Letters

    Our hospitals are crying out for help

    …Posted Saturday, March 26 2011 at 00:00

    The state of our hospitals continue to worsen. At the beginning of this month, the dire state of Mulago Hospital was brought to light. The limited number of nurses, and the 15 deaths that were reportedly caused by a power cut were simply too much to contain. A few weeks later, I read in the press about a similarly deteriorating situation in Entebbe Hospital – that has only two ambulances and a one is functional, The other is in a sorry state. The one that is useful was donated during CHOGM in 2007.

    It is absurd that a hospital that is located near State House Entebbe is in a sorry state. The medical superintendant, Dr Ben Ayeko, admitted that, usually patients are asked to buy fuel for the ambulance. I can’t even begin to imagine the shock a caretaker would have if on top of worrying about their patient in critical condition and the cost, they are asked to pay for fuel!

    Is it the government that is not sending sufficient funds or are they somehow not reaching their rightful destination? Either way, something has to be done and soon.

    Paula Atim.

    Godfrey Kahangi:

    ‎Grace Ssuuna Now Compare your post “Our hospitals are crying out for help” with this one:

    Army to acquire new jet fighters

    Friday, 25th March, 2011

    By Mary Karugaba

    THE Government is lobbying MPs to approve $740m (about sh1.7 trillion) to purchase new fighter planes and tanks.

    Sources that attended a closed door meeting between President Museveni and the NRM caucus at State House Entebbe disclosed that officials from the Ministry of Defence said so far $446m (about sh1trillion) had already been paid.

    The members were also told the equipment would be delivered in instalments. The officials, however, did not disclose the country where the equipment wwould be purchased from.

    The members were told the first consignment of four new planes was expected in in June and the rest will be delivered before the end of the year.
    Sources also said the money was borrowed from the Central Bank reserves in dollars, a matter many suspected to have been the cause of the weak shilling.
    Sources said the President briefed members on the Government’s military investments that involved purchase of jets and tanks. The President reportedly briefed the members on how the army had evolved since 1986.

    “When we took over Kampala, we had only 20,000 military officers. However others were integrated and the number increased to 100,000. But towards 2000, we had retrenchment and the number reduced to 40,000,” the President reportedly explained.

    “The army was ill-equipped so we also embarked on professionalising it, a process that involved buying more equipment,” the President added. The meeting started at 11:00pm and ended at about 2:00am.

    Sources said the President also informed members that most of the current equipment was junk and needed overhaul. “In that process, we bought new jets. Three are okay and one got problems while in Garamba,” the source quoted the President.

    The President reportedly explained that the new purchase was meant to protect the country from insecurity in the region and possible attacks.
    “He said we needed to prepare for any eventuality,” the source said.

    “The President was mobilising us to support the retrospective authority request when it is presented to Parliament by Finance minister Syda Bbumba,” the source added.

    According to the law, any Government investment or purchase should be approved by Parliament but in circumstances when the purchase is made, a retrospective authority should be sought.

    Members reportedly put the Attorney General to task to explain whether the drawback was a loan. MPs also asked the President whether this was the first time the Government was making such a move.

    During the meeting, the issue reportedly became controversial and members said it should first be handled by a committee of senior Cabinet ministers before it is brought to the public.

    “The members’ views were that military expenditure should be classified. They agreed that the matter was complicated and advised that responsible ministries should first handle the matter and call us later,” the source said.

    When contacted, the Government Chief Whip, Daudi Migereko, said the meeting discussed budget matters. Asked about the military jet issue, Migereko said, “Strategic issues in the budget were discussed. The Cabinet will continue with some of the issues today.”

    People, am I missing something? This military government needs re-prioritizing. I went through the NDP on the link I posted yesterday and it has very amazing that this military expenditure can be justified in light of heath levels. Just an example on the Health Issue of Mother and Child, page 246, the inadequate capacity was cited to include:

    1. Inadequate skilled personnel for deliveries
    2. Inadequate provision of emergency and basic obstetric care
    3. Limited access to contraceptives (low family planning uptake)
    4. Limited and inappropriate adolescent sexual and reproductive heath services
    5. Inadequate funding for the immunization programs to support provision of supplies, equipment and transport
    6. Limited use of data planning

    Now, imagine what 2.7 trillion Uganda shillings would have done in this regard.

    Someone else needs to tell me why then Uganda is having 45% of its budget funded by donors? I think I am missing something here. The opposition has refused to give us alternatives. I think its time for an independent think tank to generate solutions and alternatives that the opposition can work with. This expenditure reveals lack of focus on strategic priorities.

    Stephen Twinoburyo:

    Godfrey. That’s a clear case of misplaced priorities. In the past few months we’ve seen Uganda spend massively on things that don’t help citizens – riot gear, state house and now these fighter planes and tanks. Fighter planes and tanks are not our priority looking at the massive suffering people are going through. Military equipment has not helped those N African leaders and in the case of Libya, it’s being laid to waste. Surely there’s a point us as Ugandans should say NO!

    Sarah Seruwagi:

    @Godfrey Kahangi ! RE:THE Government is lobbying MPs to approve $740m (about sh1.7 trillion) to purchase new fighter planes and tanks.” Am really touched by the whole context in that article and indeed M7 is out of touch and doesn’t at all… care anymore about the nation’s welfare!! Am interested in sharing this article with some people here so as to waken them up as to how Museveni´s head works!! Why should other country continue contributing a lot when he is just spending the nations ´s money in his stupid interests and not the nation´s need!!

     
  2. William Kibaalya, Country Director Association Francois-Xavier Bagnoud, Uganda Program

    April 25, 2012 at 10:20

    The NDP for Uganda is the starting point just like others that came before, many years back. However, the most important and fundamental questions on this plan are two;

    1. Does the government wish to respect the plan and accord the technical experts the functional freedom to implement it. Normally what kills such wonderful projects are the political engineering that muddles through all state departments. It starts with getting the right people in the right places to implement this plan.

    2. Government must accord the NDP its required and appropriate facilitation. With a growing public expenditure, I see know resources left to trickle down to finance some of the proposed investments in the NDP
    While we acknowledge, the regional and international challenges to our economic and security prosperity, Uganda needs to be a little more careful in apportioning the little resource it has into productive ventures.
    We have the means and what needs to be added is the will. Lastly, Ugandans must own the destiny of their country to prosperity. Let us give Uganda what it requires to move it to the next level. Lamenting and wishing if we were the developed world will not help.
    Let all us Ugandans of act now for a better and prosperous Uganda. These are my opinions.

     

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