While adressing new legislators at the start of the 10th parliament on thursday, Museveni noted that there were two challenges blocking Uganda’s economic growth and development. According to him that was Corruption and bureaucracy in decision making.
Though Museveni vowed to personally fight corruption in the Public sector during his Swearing in but not neccessarily relying on Accounting Officers but rather acting directly with officers responsible, it is a subject of debate whether this will turn into a reality to end corruption.
But what does it take for a President who has been in power for 30 years to fight corruption??
In a report released by The Corruption Perception Index in 2012, Uganda was ranked the 46th most corrupt country in the World.
Overtime senior government officials have insisted that the fight against corruption should be a collective responsibility whereby every member of the society should be a watchdog of the other. However as the saying goes “They preach water and drink wine”, most of the senior government officials have promoted corruption with the chief promotor President Museveni.
During the start of the 10th parliament, Museveni confirmed that he had given shs 5m to NRM and NRM-leaning independents to help them cope up with thr situation of swearing in after they had been during campaigns. However its well known that he gave out this money to induce NRM MPs to vote Jacob Oulanyah as Deputy Speaker. As if giving them money was not enough, he made it a must to physically attend to confirm that after swallowing his money, MPs would not betray him. He confirmed this after congratulating his MPs upon passing his test “Give Me, I give you”.
It should be noted that that was not the first time for president Museveni to bribe his MPs in order to have a decision passed in his favour.
In 2005, Museveni gave out shs 5m to each member of NRM in order to remove the term limits which they did in return.
Whiling popularising his Sole candidature project in Kyakwanzi, he also gave out shs 5m to each MP to go to thier villages and consult about the project as if they had no transport to thier villages.
During the NRM primaries last year, he gave out shs 250,000 to each cell in Uganda claiming that that money was meant to facilitate thier activities. The sane thing was done during generation elections in early feb 2016. While in court during the Mbabazi petition, Museveni’s lawyers acknowledged to have given out such money to his members but insisted it was not bribery but rather to facilitate NRM grassroot activities.
While on Capital gang, NRM spokesperson Ofwono Opondo confirmed that NRM used shs 20m per rally during the presidential campaigns though he claimed it was NRM money.
As if that was not enough, NRM flagbearers at all levels were given different amounts of money to facilitate them during campaigns.
So the question is, Is Museveni the right person to fight corruption in Uganda or he is tge chief promotor??
“I have been involved in political struggles for the last 50 years but i been in those struggles without pay or low pay” Museveni’s remarks while adressing the 10th parliament. So why is Museveni building a culture of commercial politics around his party??
So if the act of giving shs 5m to his MPs was out of a goodwill, will he also give it out to NRM LC Vs, councillors and Mayors that are swearing in next week?
Museveni has mastered the art of politics in Uganda. Whereas he used brutual supression and intimidation of Opponets in early 2000’s, today he has advanced to using money to bribe his way out. Its in fact easier since mosts MPs are seeking Fortune in parliament than serving people. This explains why they want tax exemptions.
Therefore for a president who is willing to bribe and to MPs who are seeking fortune is parliament, the vice of corruption is meant to be at its peak in the next five years.
To the president who has akways compromised with corrupt officials because of thier political attachment such as Global Fund in 2008, CHOGM in 2011, Temagalo, Katoosi etc, it will remain a dream for him to tackle the issue of corruption.
In conclusion, for Uganda to fight corruption, it needs leaders who will make it diffucult and risky to be corrupt and that excludes Museveni.
It also needs strong and independent institutions such as Anti-Corruption Court, DPP etc that are capable of drilling top government officials including the president just like the S.African courts did with Jacob Zuma…