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Monday, October 2, 2023
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Mister President, let every MP hire personal security

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Dear our president, on July 11, while deliberating on the controversial social media and mobile money taxes, you mentioned that some Ugandans are willing to pay the taxes but their concern is that some government officials are embezzling the money collected as tax revenue. Your excellence you referred to them as pigs. Unfortunately your government has failed to weed out those pigs from the public service.

As Ugandans oppose the taxes that impact negatively on their freedoms of speech, right to information, they are now shocked that your government wants the members of parliament who we pay for almost doing nothing, to have personal security whose calculated cost of Shs290 billion. This is alarming, especially that our health and educational facilities are the worst in the region whereas as the courts are rotten that is only the rich who go there for help. That money should go to the two sectors.

My advice, if indeed those MPs need boosted security, they should pay for it out of their pockets, including acquiring loans. I believe the money we pay them is enough to cater for all their needs. If they cannot afford it, maybe government can give them a modest security allowance. Otherwise we the people are fed up with the continuous government expenditure on issues that don’t benefit us.

Are you saying that all Ugandans should start contesting for political posts because they appear to the most remunerated in the country. We see doctors, engineers; teachers and other professionals abandon their assignments to become politicians. Then we beg that barriers to contesting such posts should be removed such as fees, age limit and academic qualifications. We also ask that you will put in place measures that catch vote buyers.

We who did European History in High School see the country now matching the Seventeenth Century Europe where a few nobles and government officials enjoyed the countries’ wealth as masses swam in abject poverty. We are not pleased that MPs who are one of the highest earners in the country get free cars, free medical care while government has no any social policy to help citizens access health services in case of dangerous diseases.

The discrimination of citizens economically by those in power caused revolutions in Europe. Ugandans have been reading this history in schools and they see no difference when they look at what is happening in the country. Good thing is that Ugandans don’t want such to happen especially when they know they will be shot dead by state operatives on orders.

We know that most MPs in parliament are billionaires who own farms, companies, hotels, private security firms, schools, health facilities, rentals, just to mention but a few. You can not tell Ugandans that such billionaires cannot afford personal security. While those pigs you mentioned are known, fear is that politicians stealing Ugandans’ wealth openly through legislations. I think the Shs290 billion earmarked for the MPs personal security is part of the problem and the population is against it.

Mr President Ugandans are crying. They can’t afford medical care, they cannot take their children to best schools, they cannot afford court fees, balanced diet and others. Their children are destined for UPE and USE schools. Ask how many of the MPs have sent their children to these poor schools. Ugandans are interested in the quality of their children as they grow yet UPE and USE cannot provide this. Actually some call it “just passing through school”. It is the reason why the MPs and other top government officials take their children to the so-called first world schools. If the MPs didn’t have the money they wouldn’t be taking their kids to those prime schools.

Such discrimination, Mr President, is indicative of a planned move to let a few rule and use the wealth of Ugandans to meet personal and family needs. A recent government report showed that poverty levels in the country had risen up yet politicians claim they want to move this country to the middle income status by 2020. That will not be achieved when money is not spent on citizens who vote politicians into power.

Mr President by saying that taxpayers should meet the cost of the MPs personal security, it means government has the money to meet the security of each family in Uganda. In the villages people are losing their properties to thieves, burglars and other criminals such as land grabbers.

However if government bows and pays for MPs personal security be ready also to pay for district chairman, LCIII, Mayors, LCII, LCI and Councilors at all levels. You will not deny them because they also serve in your government and are also important as far as the development of the country is concerned. My cry is that you just leave the MPs to meet their own personal security costs.

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