By Henry Mayega
The New Vision publications of May 10 – 11, 2023 carried stories that resonated with President Yoweri Museveni’s cherished subjects of social economic transformation, Pan-Africanism as well as household incomes.
One of the stories revealed that plans were underway for the DRC to join the EACOP project and another reported a legion of business opportunities that would accrue to Ugandans in terms of food and beverage supplies, security needs, leisure requirements etc, all stemming from Uganda’s oil industry maturation.
Those stories, put together, speak to the visionary leadership of Yoweri Museveni; who deliberately, after the discovery of commercial oil reserves in the Albertine Graben, identified, lined up, prioritized training and deployed Ugandans in the nascent sector in order to maximize national benefits by using local content in all possible senses rather than relying on pricey foreigners with the requisite expertise; that capacity building, which severally included an element of understudying successful oil stories elsewhere, is largely the reason why our country is atop the game.
In an act of intellectual dishonesty, Uganda’s recessing opposition prefers to keep the following good news away from the public domain; that an international airport and Uganda’s most modern city are developing in the Albertine Graben thence booming the local economy at breakneck speed is retrogression to them; it is forecasted that over 5000 Ugandans are going to be, initially, employed in various fields in the oil industry- a major boost to the insular economy with indisputable spin offs in far flung areas and for the country.
The EACOP regional project, in line with the spirit of Pan – Africanism and initially a joint venture of Uganda, Tanzania and others, is bountifully attracting additional participation from the neighborhood as stated earlier – the DRC being the newest; who knows, others may board in due course.
After this President – Uganda’s best so far since independence, in a starling fashion and without ambiguity, steered the country away from the effects of the insecurities and the tumultuous state spells of the 1960s1970s and 1980s. In addition, he successfully circumvented the numerous regional political rapids and fully restored Uganda into the international files of honour despite that being labour intensive and intellectual resources consuming; gone are the political whirlwinds of the past. The persisting rebellions are in Uganda’s extra-boundary environments.
Earlier, the Common-Wealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) was successfully held in Kampala in 2007 – confirming Uganda’s re-admission into the international community.
Relatedly, various international convocations are due to take place in Uganda later this year and the next in a quick succession. They include the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Summit – which is comprised of 60% of the UN’s membership, the G77 and the China Conference. All these events will pour colossal sums of forex into Uganda’s economy, employ multitudinous folks in the leisure industry and food sector and above all, buoy up Uganda’s global image as a first-rate and sublime tourist destination as well as apolitical heavy weight.
Uganda’s international standing has fully rebounded; for instance, and unknown to some with a cognitive deficit, this President is regularly consulted on regional security matters; a role the less sagacious have habitually portrayed as a global north’s preserve. Intellectual dishonesty peddlers recall Uganda’s internationally approbated involvement in Sierra Leon, the CAR, South Sudan, Somalia and lately, in Sudan – the President, in a bid toplocate Sudan, met that country’s special envoy of the Transitional Sovereignty Council, Dafallah Al-Haj Ali at Entebbe. And, Yoweri Museveni is one of the few African leaders selected to placate the Russo-Ukraine conflict.
This scale of eventful happenings has cancelled out our dark and indelibly blighted past. And what about the President’s opponents and their hyperbolic outbursts? Well, aided by their fractiousness, mutinous mode and the commanding parliamentary/local council majorities the NRM enjoys to legislate, his nemeses are headed for obliteration at the 2026 polls because there is no evidence that the group is re-charging its political batteries. The jury – the voters are out there waiting to humiliate them once more.
At the behest of this President, Uganda’s best since independence in 1962, coupled with a few like-minded regional leaders, the East African Community is robustly growing in size and numerical strength; Ethiopia and Somalia will be part of the community soon adding to the grouping’s population size a whopping 139.4m people. Moreover, the region boasts of, according to global trends, the fastest growing economies on the African continent with an average growth of 6.7%between 2013 and 2017 – double the African average; analogously, folks are living longer and healthier lives according to the Intergovernmental Committee of Experts (ICE) for Eastern Africa.
Amb. Henry Mayega