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Letter from the Editor | Ronnie Mayanja | April 2011

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Posted April 1, 2011 by Ugandan Diaspora News Team in Editorial ~ 1,888 views

     


By Ronnie Mayanja | Editor, UNAA Times Online | Dear Readers, allow me to welcome you back to spring weather. Of course for me who recently jetted back to the US after a 3 month stint in Africa, I was greeted by inclement weather conditions the northern hemisphere has to offer. Events in Libya have overtaken whatever else is happening in the world today.The Earthquake in Japan was a grim reminder of how fragile life on this planet can be when mother nature strikes, giving us even more reason to celebrate life since tomorrow is never promised.

However back to the Revolution sweeping through the Maghreb’s and the Arab world which has me troubled because as much as I don’t support dictators who cling to power in this case Qaddafi and a host of many others, I feel the west has exhibited a double standard in addressing this issue and below is the reason why.

France the former colonial master of Ivory Coast refused to intervene militarily when Laurent Gbagbo refused to step down in favor of Alassana Quatarra the leader many believed had won the Presidential elections held in this West African State.  Ivory Coast’s once vibrant economy has slowly degeneration into chaos with numerous lives lost. The sanctions and freeze on Laurent Gbagbo government have done little to bring down his regime yet the Ivorians have continued to suffer.

The US and its Western allies however unleashed their military might on Libya in the name of preventing a massacre by a leader they see as delusional but whose country enjoys great Oil and Gas reserves leading many to question if this intervention is not suspect and driven by the desire to control Libya’s vast oil wealth.

In my view Libya might be another Iraq in the making, the nation that enjoyed the fourth largest Gross Domestic Product [GDP] in Africa and also had the highest Human Development Index [HDI] on the African continent is slowly degenerating into civil war with rival governments all claiming legitimacy. The African Union has been left out of the equation and for all its intent and purpose the invasion of Libya by the West might lead to quagmire and stalemate that is sure to affect regional politics and the stability of the region.

Recently while discussing Libya and President’s Museveni’s missive on the conflict,  a friend reminded me of how he felt that President Museveni had the right message but was the wrong messenger because in his view the President is a darling of the West who has danced to their tunes in the past and therefore lacked the moral authority to speak out Libya. Of course Libya presents the perfect example of a situation were there are no permanent friends in politics, the current standoff shows that it is merely interests that drive the foreign policy of many of these super powers. But who would have imagined Mubarak or now Qaddafi going before the likes of Laurent Gbabgo or even Robert Mugabe!

Back to Uganda, by now you should have heard that Tullow Oil has ceded most of its oil interests to Total and China National Offshore Oil Company [CNOOC] at a cost of about $2.96 billion dollars. To me this is a sign that we perhaps hold sizable oil reserves when you recall the amounts Heritage Oil got paid for selling their interest to Tullow Oil all this before we even started commercial production. Interestingly though documentation showing the terms and agreements the Uganda government entered with some of these Oil companies has not been made public leading many to question if back door deals are involved? For those with Children in college this presents the best time to offer career guidance for your kids by encouraging them to do courses in Oil and Gas Management since very soon Uganda will be joining the 50 top petroleum producers in the World.

On another note join me in congratulating our Creative Director and my business partner here at UNAA Times Mr. Solomon Jagwe whose Galiwango Movie was selected for showing at the Swedish African Film Festival that took place in Stockholm. Mr. Jagwe’s film was selected to represent East Africa in the animation category and received a standing ovation see link below. [ http://www.sowl.com/african-film-festival/]

As always we appreciate all your support and please continue to share our news with your various communities while sending us those stories you want us to cover on this blog.

Finally, be on the look out for the very first diaspora social networking summit coming up later this year as we celebrate those Ugandans that have made an impact and excelled in their various fields of work abroad. [ www.ugandandiaspora.com ]

God Speed and Stay Safe,

Ronnie Mayanja
UNAA Times Online
www.unaatimes.com
US Cell: +1-978-235-2459


About the Author

Ugandan Diaspora News Team

Ugandan Diaspora News Online is an independent, non political news portal primarily aimed at serving Ugandans who work and reside outside Uganda. Our aim is to be a one stop shop for everything Ugandan and the celebration of our Ugandan heritage.

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