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Opinion | Uganda – Nothing to Sell but Museveni Is Looking for Foreign Markets By Ssemujju Ibrahim Nganda

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Posted May 2, 2017 by Ugandan Diaspora News Team in Opinion ~ 619 views

     

Opinion — Our great brother revolutionary leader Gen Yoweri Museveni and his dear wife Janet Kataaha who is also minister of education and sports were in Qatar last week. They were accompanied by, among others, their in-law Sam Kutesa who is Uganda’s foreign affairs minister. Kutesa is the father of Maj Gen Muhoozi

Kainerugaba’s wife. Kutesa’s late wife Jennifer Kutesa was a cousin to Janet Kataaha. The only non-family member in the delegation was finance minister Matia Kasaija.

This reminded me of an article titled, “Museveni govt’s family tree” that Andrew Mwenda published in 2009. Later, Amina Hersi, of Somali origin and owner of prime properties in Kampala, joined them in Qatar. Because these things have happened for a long time, we have learnt how to live with them. I mean family rule which I consider the highest form of corruption.

Anyway, in Qatar, our rulers met the emir of that tiny but wealth country, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani. This year I will make 44 years. This Qatari ruler is eight years younger than me. He was five years when Museveni seized power in 1986. To be exact, he is 36 years old.

His father Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani handed over power to him in 2013. The father was 61 years old when he handed over power to a 33-year-old. He said in a speech televised by Al Jazeera that Qatar needed more youthful hands.

I think it takes extra courage for a 73-year-old Museveni and a 68-year-old Kutesa to carry a begging bowl to a 36-year-old emir. There are things our revolutionary leader should be ashamed of doing. You have run (managed) a country for a period of 31 years and you go to beg from a person who was five years old when you became a leader!

Of course Qatar is a wealthy nation, one that should be visited by anyone in need. What surprised me also is Museveni’s failure to know that Qatar is a strong Islamic country. In fact, they are the only Gulf state that supported the Islamic Brotherhood in Egypt and condemned the latter’s removal from power.

One can argue that they supported it because it was a democratically elected government.

Why, when visiting such as country, don’t you go with some Muslim ministers and Muslim leaders? That may appear small, but it can open wide taps. I think Kenyans were not stupid to assign Industry, Trade and Cooperatives cabinet secretary Adan Mohamed to receive a delegation of investors from Saudi Arabia on April 12, 2017.

She doesn’t wear ‘Fool’s Gold’ when she steps out, and she’s more than ‘Almost Famous’ for her red carpet style… Of course we’re talking about …
This delegation was led by Saudi minister of Commerce and Investment Majed bin Abdullah Al Qasabi. Saudi Arabia allowed Kenya to export 100,000 domestic workers during a meeting. This is the central theme of my article today. Yes, exporting domestic workers is the main theme of this article.

Why? The emir of Qatar advised Museveni to take advantage of the demand in Qatar of over two million workers. Employing domestic workers is the biggest offer from Gulf States these days.

Qatar is a country of 0.3 million citizens. The rest 2.3 million residents are foreign workers. Mind you this is a country with GDP of over $300 billion and I think the biggest purchasing power parity per capita in the world, estimated at $140,649. Qatar has 10 per cent of the world’s oil reserves and a $335 billion sovereign fund.

What any wise leader in Uganda or Africa should do is to increase agricultural output and plead with wealthy countries like Qatar to buy your products. I hope you have not forgotten the story of Egypt which offered Uganda a market for yellow bananas. Their cargo aircraft made three rounds and finished all the bogoya (yellow banana) from Uganda. The supply lasted three months.

I think Stella Nyanzi was harsh to describe our great revolutionary leader as a “pair of buttocks”, but looking for a market for what you don’t have is real madness.

That is why we have been reduced to exporters of labourers to these wealthy nations. We are told agriculture grew by 3.2 per cent in 2015/16 but the food and fishing sub-sectors grew by just 1.1 per cent and 1.2 per cent respectively.

Our target should be to supply food to these desert but wealthy countries. I recently bought a tiny pawpaw in a supermarket in Dubai at 13 dirham, which is about Shs 15,000.

That story of a Kenyan minister negotiating to export vulnerable Kenyans to Saudi Arabia is very painful. That our leaders cannot feed us, they are now exporting us to work as house helpers. Shame!

What is the difference between them and the colonial-era slave traders? State House issued a statement to suggest that Museveni had signed memoranda of understanding on defence, agriculture and trade.

His travel coincided with lifting of a ban on exportation of house helpers by Uganda. Other people are exporting commodities; but for us, we are busy exporting human beings. God save our country.

The author is Kira Municipality MP.

Source — The Weekly Observer


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.

One Comment


  1.  
    Peter kato

    You boyie Ronnie…………..olya mululime nemuluzisse. You can run but you cna hide. Very shallow brains





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