Worst I Best – Acholi MPs 2018/2019 Ranked.


1-Hon Olanya Gilbert talked 129 times

2-Hon Aol Betty Ochan spoke 105 times

3-Hon Otto Edward Makmot talked 73 times

4-Hon Okin PP Ojara talked 38 times

5- Hon Komakech Lyando talked 33 times

6-Hon Oyet Simon talked 27 times

7-Hon Atim Beatrice Any war talked 26 times

8-Hon Lowila C.D Oketayot talked 24 times

9-Hon Akello from Amuru talked 22 times

10-Hon Odonga Otto talked 13 times

11- Hon Achiro Lucy talked 12 times

12-Hon Okot Peter talked 10 times

13-Hon Akol Anthony talked 09 times

14-Hon Lamwaka Margret talked 06 times

15- Hon Lamwaka Catherine talked 06 times

16-Hon Okumu Ronald Reagan talked 04 times

17-Hon Lanyero Molly talked 03 times

18-Hon Obaloker Hilary Onek talked 02 times

18-Hon Ogenga Latigo spoke 02 times

19-Hon Omony Oscar talked 00 times

20-Hon Oryem Henry Okello talked 00 times.

The best MP is Hon Bahati who spoke 396 times on the floor of Parliament Overall, the survey looked at the MP’s submission on the floor of Parliament between June 2018 and July 2019.

Credit I Daily Monitor

Former State Minister of Defense Under Obote’s Regime, Peter Otai Dead


Former State Minister of Defense Peter Otai under Milton Obote two government between 1981-84 is dead

After the collapse of the Uganda Peoples’ Congress government, Otai in 1987, started a rebellion in Eastern Uganda especially Teso sub-region. Under Uganda People’s Army (UPA) and Otai as its leader the outfit gave hard times the government President Museveni in the area.

Otai is reported to have saved the current Minister of Internal Affairs Gen. Jeje Odongo when he was arrested and jailed in Luzira prison for treason after he was captured after attack on Kabamaba army barracks by rebels of National Resistance Army under the then rebel Yoweri Museveni.

He was the Minister of state for Defence from 1981 until the military coup that over threw Obote in 1985.

The rebellion was later ended through mediation between the National Resistance Movement governments under the Teso Commission.

Mr Otai went to exile in the UK where he has been until his death last night .Otai comes from Oderai, Soroti district .

According to family source Otai has been in comma for the last two weeks. Doctors have not yet communicated the course of his death.

Last year, Daily Monitor reported that Mr. Otai had sought President Museveni’s assurance to return home, which was granted. However, his home coming, hang in the balance for lack of money to facilitate his travel.

Tyson Iloot Otai, his son, said President Museveni sanctioned his father’s return and asked Prime Minister Dr Ruhakana Rugunda to work out a plan, but it has not materialized.

“His Excellency President Museveni is an honest person. I met him at Serena Hotel in Kampala and he was happy about my father’s plan to return home. He promised several things but most of them have not been done by people around him,” Mr Iloot said last year.

UPC party leader Jimmy Akena told Eagle Online he had heard about the rumour but he was yet to confirm the passing on of their party member.

According to Eagle Online. Joseph Ochieno a senior member of the UPC party speaking from London confirmed that it is true that Otai had passed. “I have heard so, he was unwell but am yet to speak to the family. He did his bit and NRA won’t accept”. Credit: Eagle Online

Picture: LDU Shot Dump/Deaf Boy in Adilang. Worst Part, Leg Amputated.


A 25-year-old youth with a disability is pleading for justice at Ambrozoli Hospital, Kalongo Town Council in Agago District.

Willis Oloya was shot on the leg by one of the soldiers attached to the Local Defence Unit, as they enforced the President’s curfew directive.

Willies, a youth with hearing impairment was shot due to miscommunication. He could not respond to their verbal communications and neither did the security understand his communication prompting one personnel to open up his magazine on him.

His left leg was totally damaged and by yesterday his leg had to be amputated because it had started rotting. Family now demand justice as the alleged suspect in the shooting are all at large.

Follow the debate online make a single tweet calling for justice for Oloya today under #DeafJusticeCampaign #Justice4Oloya

Thanks to #NTV-Uganda for picking interest in this particular story

Kanyamunyu Trial Adjourned Indefinitely but is Mato-Oput the Way Out?


Kanyamunyu goes traditional accepts Mato-Oput traditional means of healing to unwind Kenneth Akena’s shooting nightmare in a special exclusive event at Ker Kal Kwaro.

The trial of murder key suspect Mathew Kanyamunyu and his girlfriend Cynthia Munwangari has been adjourned indefinitely after presiding judge Stephen Mubiru returned back to his duty station as Gulu resident judge.

Kanyamunyu and Munwangari are accused of shooting dead child rights activist, Kenneth Akena in 2016 after he reportedly scratched Kanyamunyu’s vehicle around Lugogo in Nakawa Division. 

After hearing of the 13th prosecution witness, the trial of the suspects which was part of a special criminal court session presided over by justice Mubiru was this afternoon adjourned indefinitely after the session came to an end. Mubiru, now returns to Gulu to handle cases within his jurisdiction. 

As a result, the trial will now be pushed to another convenient session whose dates are not yet fixed, a development which might require that the trial starts afresh. John Paul Akena, one of the brothers to the deceased said that the adjournment spells doom because to them, it tantamount to the denial of justice. He, however, hastens to add that the family will continue waiting with hope for justice.   

Before the adjournment, the state prosecutors led by Jonathan Muwaganya presented their 13th witness; detective assistant inspector of police Steven Walimbwa who was the investigating officer in the alleged murder. 

He said that on November 12, 2016, he got instructions from his boss, detective assistant superintendent of police Godwin Agaba, the head of the Criminal Investigations Department at Jinja Road police station requiring him to go to Norvik hospital and take Akena’s body to the City Mortuary for postmortem. 

Walimbwa said the examination was done by two doctors and he witnessed a projectile being removed from Akena’s rectum and seven mops. He told the court that while there, detective Seargent Haruna Mugisha took pictures of the events in the presence of the deceased’s brother. 

He added that later, he went to Wandegeya police station where fellow detectives handed to him some exhibits including Kanyamunyu and Akena’s cars, two mobile phones, a bunch of keys, a knife, a right-handed shoe, black dress and navy blue trouser with its coat.

The court further heard that Walimbwa got an order from the directorate of public prosecution to release the car to Kanyamunyu which was done in May 2018.  Walimbwa narrated that he wrote to the commissioner in charge of private firearms in the ministry of Internal Affairs seeking to find out whether Kanyamunyu could have ever acquired a license to possess a firearm.  

But the commissioner in charge of firearms reportedly wrote back saying that they didn’t have any record indicating that Kanyamunyu has ever applied for a gun or been licensed to have one.

Bickering Over Abuse of Funds, DP Parliamentarian Want Mao Investigated.


Members of Democratic Party (DP Parliamentary cause have come to question the ongoing party leader renewal process and irregular use of party funds by the current leadership of Norbert Mao.

According to DP Whip Joseph Gonzaga SSewungu, party members have been frustrated by the unexplained failure by Moa’s leadership to avail party cards and village registers.

Ssewungu said this while addressing a press conference at parliament with a group of other fifteen leaders who expressed their dissatisfaction over Mao’s failure to undertake the process of leadership renewal in a manner that follows the party constitution.

They allege that individuals from the party headquarters have undertaken their own activities of distributing personally sanctioned party registers outside the party procedures and have also gone ahead to distribute party cards without serial numbers of their supporters.

The party has suffered a lot of internal bickering and fights witnessed in a number of districts offices like Masaka, Wakiso, Mukono and Makindye.

Party leaders allude to the friction at DP to a number of issues and for the registration they stressed lack of funds as a hindrance to getting the cards and register printed.

However, Ssewungu rubbished the claims of lack of funding saying DP receives shs370m every quarter from the Electoral commission to run all these petty petty party activities.

“The party president should come out, explain and make available accountability for funds received from Electoral Commission, borrowed from various sources, contributed by party members and generated from the party contribution’ The legislator demanded.

Ssewungu added that the party should embark on ensuring that the leadership renewal is carried out transparently and reflects the will of party members an opposed to the will of self-seeking in the party ranks.

As such they have asked the IGG to take interest in the matter and carry out investigations in the use of the funds.

“The Inspectorate of Government should take interest in the matters and carries out investigations in the issue of party funds”

#GuluSpeaks Inaugural Dialogue on Child Prostitution Blossom. Action Next.


Did you know that about 70% of the alleged child prostitutes and women in prostitution in Gulu district are non residents or born of the area? Did you know that even married women have special clients that tap on them to come have a service and resert home to serve their men at home? Hahahaha, its not poverty nor war memories.

Stop the blame game child prostitution in Gulu is a problem of mindset one leader echoes. Rehabilitation, education and lifelong support thought after. Thought after leaders out rightly say, Child prostitution and prostitution in totality is illegal and criminal especially when kids are involved. its defilement.

Well better and upto date story coming up shortly……

Photos Credit: #GuluSpeaks Media Team

We were part of the inaugural #GuluSpeaks Community dialogue held at Taks Centre on 14.03.2020
I am a father to a girl and keep on wondering how my daughter will grow up one day when I am no longer around her. Every child deserves a decent life – Ojok, the Coordinator #GuluSpeaks relents on Parenting.
My personal encounter raising a child with lived experience changed my mindset on issues of child prostitution – Counsel Tonny Kitar, mega lawyer.
Speak up, #GuluSpeaks with Comedian/Musician Okeng Born Town of Ejang fame
Vice chancellor Gulu Gniversity Professor Openjur Lader, Chairperson National Youth Council Hon Aber Lilian who also doubles as Senior presidential Advisor on Youth Affairs caution singer mothers and fathers over decent parenthood.
Gender base and sexual Rights Activist have a word to nod over #GuluSpeaks
Larsen Jasper, You speak we listen and act #GuluSpeaks
Hon. Alex Okoya’s insight on child prostitution is real. With the vice widely practices in the confines of his area, Okaoya has a different take on action point to address the issues of Child prostitution. #GULUspeaks
Alobo Monica, Director St. Thereza School #SpeaksOut
whereas you are too much focused on the girl children, young boys are equally being abused by older women- Obol Justine Simple Man
Listening to voices of change
An ordinance can be passed to help curb the vice but if the implementation is going to stagger like the some many by laws passed in the district then is as useless as not trying to even invest in it. Politicians reaping from the business or hand a hand in this should be warned we are yet to name and shame them……….

Kizza Besigye, Listed Most Arrested Man in the World – Guinness Book of Records

Besigye Meets Baguma

Former President Forum for Democratic Change party, Kizza Besigye, has been recognized by the Guinness World Book of Records as the most arrested man in the world.

Besigye was marked in the world book of records on Monday, 20th January 2020 when he was arrested for the 50th time and locked behind bars at Nalufenya Police Station. The arrest foiled his mission to address party loyalists who had camped at Bugembe Stadium in jinja.

Besigye got into running battles with police officers from Jinja Police Station, Bugembe Police Station and Kakira Police Stations before soldiers from Gadaffi Army Barracks were deployed to take charge.

Police fired teargas at Dr Besigye supporters after a public address system he was supposed to use inside the stadium, was allegedly dismantled by police.

Besigye’s arrest has now cemented his legacy in the world book of records for having the highest number of arrests in the world. 30% of his arrests alone came in 2016 when he got arrested more than 15 times during Uganda’s general elections.

Operations of Planned 9 New Cities, Stagnates Over Lack of Funds and Delayed Parliamentary Endorsement.

An Aerial View of Gulu City, Picture taken by PPU on May 31, 2019

Uganda Local Government Association (ULGA) has asked Parliament to expedite the process of approving the nine cities so they are catered for in the 2020/2021 Financial Year. Besides, allowing them participate in 2021 general election.

The call was made by ULGA members on Friday as they ushered in the new Minister of Local Government, Mr Raphael Magyezi, aslo Igara West Member of Parliament during his visit at their offices in Najjanankumbi.

Whereas cabinet in the financial year 2017/2018 passed a resolution to create nine cities namely Fort Portal, Mbarara, Hoima, Entebbe, Lira, Mbale, Jinja, Arua and Gulu with an additional 200 town councils and 196 sub counties Parliament is yet to take a staunch move in endorsing the resolutions.

“The sluggish move to get the resolution endorse has been cited and this may affect the cities being allotted operational funds in the 2019/2020 financial budget” read a document on #N24SituationNewsroom.

Keith Muhakanizi, secretary to the treasure has been over ally cited against the creation of more administrative unite saying government had no money to fund their operations.

According to a report in the News Vision, Mr Ben Kumumanya, the permanent Secretary in the Ministry of local Government said the ministry was concerned over the slow pace at which parliament was going on with this critical development aspect even after the ministry had provided all evidence that the nine municipalities were ready for upgrade to a city status.

“Let us come out and support the Minister in ensuring that he walks out of Parliament next week with an endorsement, time is up and we need to prepare for 2021 general election there is no more time to waste we need to get busy” said, Kumumanya.

Who asked government to also reconsider providing funding for all sub counties and town councils. “Over 500 administrative units do not get funding from government, a situation that undermines service delivery.

When contacted Mr. Magyezi simply said the newly created town councils and sub counties will definitely become operational given his close work relation with the speaker of parliament, members of opposition and government chief whip who will all aid the endorsement process.

COVID-19: Museveni Bans Cars, Effects Curfew- Full Speech

President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni
President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni

Countrymen and countrywomen

I am here, to again address you on the issue of the corona-virus. I first, addressed you on this issue on the 18th of March, 2020. Before I addressed you, together with the experts, we had discussed, in depth, the science of this virus. In that study, we had discovered the following characteristics of this virus.

1.   It spreads through inhalation if somebody with the virus coughs (okukororra) or sneezes (okwetsyamura) near you ─ within four metres from you. It will, then, infect you through the inhalation of the rwooya (vapour) of the sick person that would have coughed or sneezed.

2.   The second mode of spreading is when the infected person pollutes surfaces such as tables, door handles, etc. If you touch the polluted surface and, then, touch yourself in the soft parts of the body: eyes, nose or mouth, you also get infected. The virus cannot go through the normal, intact skin of a human being. It only goes through the soft parts mentioned above.

3.   Although the healthy people afflicted may survive, it can kill alot of people that already have other medical conditions such as Aids, blood-pressure, pregnancy, diabetes, sickle-cells, cancer, the elderly, etc. In China, its kill rate was 4.05%.  In Italy its now 11.03% and Spain, its kill rate is now 8.4%.  It even kills the young people in some circumstances, like the young doctor, Li Wenliang, of Wuhan in China, who first identified this problem. He was only 33 years old.

Given its spread methods ─ sneezing and coughing by an inconsiderate and careless person in a cluster of people bunched together as well as an individual’s own carelessness of touching the soft parts of your   body (the eyes, the nose and the mouth) without washing your hands or sanitizing them first, after careful study, we decided that this virus will spread fastest if it gets into large concentrations of people, some of whom may be behaving inconsiderately or carelessly as stated above. We, therefore, adopted the strategy of dispersing any concentration that may provide fuel to this virus.

In my address of the 18th of March, 2020, I put out 13 actions that dealt with this problem, in part, as well as other associated matters.  The 13 measures were:

(1)   Close all the Educational Institutions which accounted for 15 million young Ugandans;

(2)   Suspend communal prayers in Mosques, Churches or in Stadia and other open air venues;

(3)   Stop all public political rallies, cultural gatherings or conferences;

(4)   Banned Ugandans from moving to or through category one (I) countries that had had a large number of corona cases by that time;

(5)   We allowed returning Ugandans provided they underwent mandatory quarantine, at their cost, for 14 days at a venue identified by the Ministry of Health;

(6)   We allowed the non-agricultural gathering points to continue but with SOPs(Standard Operating Procedures) put out by the Ministry of Health; and these gathering points were: factories, hotels, large plantations, markets, taxi-parks, etc.;

(7)   We discouraged the hexagonal, extravagant Ugandan-style weddings; if in a hurry, we encouraged the couples to go for the scientific weddings by the actual stakeholders, accompanied by a few people;

(8)   Burials could not be postponed, but it should be for a few people ─ the concerned homestead;

(9)   With the 33 million farmers, according to the 2014 census, there was no problem because they are dispersed in their farms, plantations, etc.; the only issues to deal with here were the monthly or weekly cattle auction markets (ebikomera); and obutare (food markets); these were suspended; 

(10) At that time, we thought that we could continue with the public transport systems of buses, mini-buses, taxis, boda-bodas, etc., provided they were given SOPs;

(11) The discos, dances, bars, sports, music shows, cinemas and concerts were all suspended;

(12) Number 12 was hygiene and enlightened (not kikafiri behavior ) behaviours of not coughing or sneezing in public, no spitting, washing with soap and water or using sanitizers, regularly disinfecting surfaces such as tables, door handles, etc. and not touching your eyes, nose or mouth with contaminated and unwashed hands; and

(13) Ended with nutrition to strengthen the body defence system.

We quickly, however, learnt that some of the actors were not obeying these measures and that, for instance, the returnees from abroad, from the high risk countries, were escaping from the quarantine even when it was mandatory. The ones in self-quarantine were also escaping, e.g. the Chinese that were arrested on the Congo boarder, in Zombo or the returnee from Kisumu that is the father of the Iganga baby that turned up positive that went into hiding. These gaps could cause us serious problems. 

These gaps were undermining the strategy of denying the virus the fuel that it could ignite and sustain its expansion by ensuring that there is no match-box and there is no dry grass ─ no virus and no concentrated masses. Therefore, on the 25th of March, 2020, on the 41st Anniversary of the battle of Rugaando, I announced two new measures:

1.   Stopped all passengers coming into Uganda by air, land or water; this affected in-coming planes, buses, taxis or boats;

2.   Also prohibited from entry were the pedestrians ─ people walking on foot from the neighbouring countries.

In all these measures, we were careful to clearly state that cargo planes and cargo vehicles, within Uganda and between Uganda and the outside, should continue with only the crews for the air-crafts and 3 persons per cargo vehicle.

Then, on the 21st of March, 2020, we announced additional measures as follows:

(i)                    All public passenger transport vehicles are stopped and those were: taxis, coasters, buses, passenger trains, tuk-tuks (tri-cycles) and bodabodas;

(ii)                 Secondly, in order to scale down the numbers of the populations in the markets, we announced that only food sellers should remain in the markets; the non-food sellers should suspend their activities.  

However, private vehicles could continue but with only 3 people maximum per vehicle. However, ambulances, army vehicles, garbage collection vehicles, etc., would continue.

Since that time, we have been monitoring the situation. It was good we took all these measures. However, there are still windows through which the virus can continue to spread.  As of today, the 30th of March, 2020, 31 Ugandans and 2 Chinese have been confirmed as being positive with the virus.

Almost all of them are imported cases by Ugandans returning from mainly Dubai (UAE), Europe, the USA and Afghanistan.  Only 3 are the ones that received it from the importers. These are: the wife and daughter of the Masaka man and the baby from Iganga whose father had returned from Kisumu in Kenya.  Out of the 33, the number of  eight (8) were intercepted at Entebbe, in the quarantine or, even, at the airport, like the case number one, who was detected by the temperature monitor and another 7 that were first identified by the temperature monitoring system. This means that 14 out of the 33 had already entered the ekibuga (city, town), the lujja (compound) and some had even entered omuunju ─ munyuumba (inside the house) since we did not detect them at the Eireembo (the main entrance) or they escaped from the Eishaazi ─ the holding ground ─ by escaping from the quarantine.  How many other Ugandans did they interact closely with to infect them? That is what we need to discover and soonest.  It is good that those who start feeling the symptoms report themselves, like the case from Hoima did.  However, this disease has two characteristics that make the work of fighting it tedious and quite challenging and need maximum vigilance.

One characteristic is that some of the infected people may not feel sick and may not even know that they are infected. Yet, they will continue spreading the disease, of course, through the carelessness of the general population of, for instance, polluting surfaces and touching oneself in the soft parts of one’s body: the eyes, the nose and the mouth; and sitting very close to one another even if the infected person is not coughing. After further careful analysis, we have come to the conclusion that to be on the safe side, it is better we err on the side of caution than to wait for a possible situation like of some countries where a 1,000 people are dying per day from this disease.

The second characteristic of this virus is that those that are infected, even when they survive, they take long in the hospital. In China, one case took 2 months. This has caused the filling up of all the hospital places even in the countries with advanced medical systems, until a situation where the medical authorities have to decide on who should be allowed to die and who should not.

Therefore, with these cases that had entered in the house, we should not wait for that situation. Incidentally, we now have under quarantine, a total of 839 persons.  Even those that are alleged to have escaped from the quarantine, have all come back. How many people had they interacted with and how careless are they with the sitting close to one another and with the carelessly touching their soft parts? We, therefore, think that there is less risk in taking the risk of the bitter medicine of maximum restrictions for a limited time than gambling by assuming that pollution was limited when we are not absolutely sure. Since we started this campaign of sensitization, if everybody listened by not coughing and sneezing near other people, by not sitting too close to one another when the infected person has got no symptoms and by not carelessly touching oneself in the soft parts, the cases that entered into the house would not have spread the disease. The question, however, is:  “Did all our people listen?”

That is why it is better not to take any risk by being complacent and assuming that everybody took heed when many may have not taken heed. That is why we have decided to take additional measures as follows:

1.   Measure number one is to prohibit all people to people movement by everybody including those using their private vehicles, bodabodas, tuk-tuks, etc.  Why?  Two reasons: (i) some private car owners have turned their cars into taxis, transporting the two people we had permitted, assuming that they would be members of one’s family, when in fact they were passengers being charged the exorbitant fare of shillings 50,000/- from Kampala to Jinja.  Hence, the problem we were trying to cure of allowing the mixing of people from different sources was not being addressed. Instead, it was taking new forms.  The people with private cars were now the new public transporters without licences and facilitating the dangerous mixing in the process.  Secondly, even more importantly, even if the private car owners had been disciplined and only moved around with only the 2 members of their families, still that movement would be dangerous because we do not know who has the virus now and who does not, given the penetration of the imported cases into the society, short-lived though it may have been.  The ban on privately owned passenger vehicles will take effect from 2200 hours (Ten O’clock ─ Shaaha inna  ez’ekiro), today, the 30th of March, 2020. I would have given the public time to adjust but on more scientific study, it was found that this would be a wrong policy. Why? A longer time would give people time to try and go to the villages. In so doing, they may transfer the sickness. We, would, then, not be curing anything. This freezing of movement will last 14 days from the 1st of April, 2020.  This time it is not Fool’s Day; it is wise-person’s Day.

2.   The second category of concentrations are the shopping malls, arcades, hardware shops, which gather alot of people to sell and buy non-food items.  These are suspended for 14 days starting with the 1st of April, 2020.

3.   All the non-food shops (stores) should also close.  Only food stores, stores selling agricultural products, veterinary products, detergents and pharmaceuticals should remain open. The Ministry of Health should work out SOPs for those stores. Many people should not be allowed to congregate there and form lines to buy.  Home deliveries should, instead, be encouraged.

4.   The Super-markets should remain open but with clear SOPs that should restrict numbers that enter and leave the site at a given time and the handling of trolleys within the super-markets.   Alot of people can be infected by handling the unsterilized trolleys within the super-markets. 

5.   The established Food Markets in Kampala and the other towns should continue to be open.  However, two precautions must be observed.  One, the distance of four metres to the front, to the left, to the right and to the rear ─ between seller and buyer and also seller and seller must be observed in all the markets. Secondly, the sellers must not go home during the 14 days. They must arrange to stay nearby for that duration. That movement between workplace to home and back, is part of the problem.  How are the people you left at home and how do you move to work if there is no public transport? It is that mixing that we want to freeze ─ between home, enroute and workplace.  Be in only one place for 14 days and we see what is happening.

6.   Saloons, Lodges and garages should also be shut for 14 days from the 1st of April, 2020.

7.   Like the farms, we would like the factories to keep producing because that is the life-blood of the country. However, the danger is in the workers going home and coming back.  It is that daily movement that must be frozen. Let the factory owners arrange for the crucial employees to camp around the factory area for the 14 days.  If they cannot do that, let them suspend production for 14 days.

8.   Construction sites should continue if they can be able to encamptheir workers for 14 days.  Otherwise, they should suspend construction for the 14 days.

9.   The essential services are: the medical, agriculture and veterinary, telecommunication, door-to-door delivery, financial institutions, all media, Private Security companies, cleaning services, garbage collection, fire-brigade, fuel stations, water departments and some KCCA staff should continue to operate.

URA should also not close business on account of not paying taxes in these 14 days. These employers should, however, see whether they can encamp some staff near the workplace for the 14 days, which is the preferred way, or else get a special exemption from the RDC with the concurrence of the District Medical Officer.

10. Cargo transport by train, plane, lorry, pick-up, tuku-tukus, bodaboda and bicycle, within Uganda and between Uganda and the outside, must continue but only with minimum numbers, technically needed as follows:  Cargo ─ Air-craft ─ only the crew; Lorry ─ not more than 3 persons i.e. driver, tonne-boy plus one, etc., as will be directed by the Ministry of Transport, working with the National Task Force on the Corona virus.

11. Gatherings of more than 5 persons are hereby prohibited.

12. Except for cargo planes, lorries, pick-ups and trains, starting with the 31st of March, 2020, at 1900 hours (Saa Moja ya Usiku), there will be a curfew throughout the whole of Uganda.

All other movements should stop. Let people stay in-doors in their homes except for the cargo-transporters. The exemption of cargo transporters does not apply to the bodabodas, tukutukus or bicycles in the curfew hours.  Those should only operate during daylight hours.

13. In order to deal with some unavoidable health issues like mothers in child birth or very sick people, permission can be sought from the RDC to use private transport to take such a person to hospital.  Additionally, government vehicles that do not belong to UPDF, Police, Prisons or UWA, will be pooled and deployed at the District Health Offices, including the divisions of Kampala, with their drivers, staying in tented compounds, ready to help in those health emergencies. Those vehicles will be under the command of the District Medical Officer.

14. On account of this pandemic, some sectors of the economy are suffering, such as the tourism industry, the entertainment industry, the transport industry, etc. However, as I said earlier, new opportunities are emerging in this misfortune.  You have seen how the demand for sanitizers, face masks, bicycles, etc., has stimulated new industrial opportunities.  Working with the IMF and the World Bank, we shall set up a fund in UDB to accelerate industrialization through import-substitution and export promotion. You have seen how dangerous it is for Africa to excessively depend on imports from outside. This is the time to wake-up.

15. We are going to discuss with Banks, electricity companies and water companies in connection with the loans and bills, many people have with these units.  It is not correct to disconnect water or electricity on account of non-payment during this time of shutdown or to seize properties on account of the non-payment of loans.

16. Government workers should also stay at home for the 14 days, except for the Army, the Police, the Health workers, the Electricity, Water and Telephone workers.  Even there, however, SOPs should be worked out for the soldiers, etc., that do not stay in the barracks.  This problem of not staying near the workplace is something I have never supported. At one time, I wanted to shift and stay in Lubiri when it was still a barracks.  The Army leaders, that time, pacified me by turning both Nakasero and Entebbe into barracks, including taking over Nsamizi Hill.  People who do not stay in barracks, should either stay away for the duration of the shut down or camp in the barracks.  The families of the soldiers and policemen should also be controlled moving in and out of the barracks should be suspended and so should the visitors.  Otherwise, we can have a major outbreak in the barracks. The vehicles of the Army, Police, ambulances utilities’ vehicles, Prisons, UWA, etc., will continue to move on orders of the competent authorities. 

The Government anti-Corona-virus actions of stopping public transport and other measures have put the drivers and other people out of work.  Besides, many of them live hand to mouth ─ the daily bread. Without those activities, especially in the towns, such people may not be able to buy food.  The Government, after properly identifying these people will distribute food to them in the form of akahuunga (maize flour), beans, powder milk, sugar, salt, etc. In the meantime, I direct the Police to arrest the opportunistic and irresponsible politicians who try to distribute food for cheap popularity.  Those are very dangerous to the health of the people.  When you try to distribute food or money in such a situation, people gather around you.  Many people can be infected in that process.  You will, therefore, have caused the sickness or death of those people.  Anybody involved in that effort will be arrested and charged with attempted murder. Today, Mr. Elumelu sent me US$150,000.  I will use it to buy, may be, three (3) four-wheel drive vehicles to use, by the Ministry of Health to use in this effort.  Those trying to take patients to hospitals, must also stop because they spread the virus in the process. If they have money, let them contribute it to the Task Force to use in a disciplined and safe way. In Mbale, the Chinese donated to me two four-wheel drive Jeeps.  I have donated these to the Task Force of the anti-corona virus.

 However, the crucial point is the stopping of the epidemic.  I do not want us to lose millions of our vulnerable people to this wholly avoidable epidemic just on account of indiscipline. What is the indiscipline? 

Coughing or sneezing where there are other people; not washing or sanitizing your hands regularly; touching yourself in the soft parts of the body with unwashed hands, the soft parts being the eyes, the nose and the mouth; and congregating in numbers when science is telling us to avoid this wholly avoidable danger, disperse and do not congregate.

The idea, a Sheikh sent to me the verse from Isaiah, Chapter 26: Verse 20. It says: “Go home my people and lock your doors! Hide yourselves for a little while until the lord’s anger has passed”.

Incurring John Nagenda’s Fury, His Former Teachers at Budo, Would Mark Him Down , for ‘Padding’!

Former UPC president Olara Otunnu. Inset is Mr John Nagenda, the Presidential Adviser on the Media. @Monitor Picture

Guest Pots I By Olara Otunnu:- I recently wrote an open letter to President Museveni , concerning Uganda ‘s response to  coronavirus ( Sunday Monitor , 24 May ) . In New Vision of 30 May, John Nagenda ( Presidential Adviser on the Media ) provided a rejoinder .

It is very striking that , in his response , John studiously avoided addressing any of the specific issues I raised , concerning coronavirus . Instead , he unleashed a fury of abuse , choice epithets and falsehoods , under the heading “ Replying to Ivorian Olara “. My teachers ( and John’s ) at  Budo , would have severely marked him down , for ‘padding’ !

In my open letter , I make it clear that the measures imposed by Mr Museveni were appropriate and necessary . They conform to WHO advisory and interventions by other countries . I also pay special tribute to our unsung heroes , the medical and scientific personnel .

Uganda’s response to coronavirus

In fighting coronavirus, the effectiveness of a country’s response turns especially on the timing and robustness of response measures. Everywhere, early intervention is key. In Uganda, despite well-known risks and early warnings , government was very slow to act in several areas of major vulnerability . 

Late interventions in the following four areas have been particularly costly for Uganda : imposing strict control and surveillance at land borders ; robust monitoring and testing of cross-border truck drivers ; focus on Dubai as a massive international crossroads and the biggest hub for Ugandan travelers and traders ; and randomised  testing across communities .

Although Mr Museveni has promulgated many measures , he has remained silent on some of the most consequential issues . These include : relief for families in great distress ; a serious stimulus package , whose beneficiaries must include small-scale farmers and informal business operators  ; a special fund for immediate support for medical service and medical staff ; overhauling of  2020/21 budget , including reallocation of the massive “classified” secret expenditures ; submitting  presidential promulgations to scrutiny by Parliament ; and providing a coherent roadmap , instead of ad hoc interventions .

 I ask John : Which of the issues raised above “drips with malicious poison from every pore . . .  “ ?

Since writing the open letter , the situation has got worse  . The incidence of infections is climbing rapidly . We now have community transmission and infection of medical personnel . The situation at key border posts and the issue of truck drivers are spiraling  out of control ; this underscores  the imperative for collective EAC intervention . Some regional referral hospitals have already been overwhelmed by caseloads . The distribution of relief food and public transport are in shambles ; now add to this , the proposed distribution of village TV sets  . Plans for reopening of schools and distribution of masks are on shaky and shifting grounds . Systematic randomised community testing is yet to commence . Crucially ,  presidential leadership remains highly partisan and belligerent  .

I do not wish to rain on John’s parade ! But Ugandans need to discuss these issues seriously , without being obnoxious , where we may disagree .

I called out Mr Museveni for his very offensive and incendiary edict , stating  that any independent distribution of food relief to starving Ugandans is “attempted murder “ . This has already provided license to some security elements to commit atrocities with impunity  . I urge Mr Museveni to apologise to the country for this pronouncement and the torture of Francis Zaake . I ask John : What is your stance on “attempted murder”  and the savaging of Zaake ?

A larger context

John refers to “others whose names start with “O” as Otunnu “ . I cannot decipher this coded message . Who exactly are “the others” in Uganda ? In another big leap , John declares :  “ Let Olara Otunnu , and his types , fail in their pathetic attempts to keep Ugandans apart “ ! Where is this outburst coming from ? Can John kindly point to a single line in my letter which would remotely support this gratuitous falsehood? So , “the gross impudence” of raising pertinent questions about government response to coronavirus , amounts to “keeping Ugandans apart “ !  I get it .  This is precisely the mentality and logic that lead inexorably to the doctrine of “attempted murder “ .

There is a larger context to all this . In the Museveni era , John has exalted in promoting ethnic and regional bigotry and discrimination . He is one of the NRM cadres who developed and inculcated the sectarian division of Ugandans into  : “us” and “them” ; “those people” and “our people” ; “northerners” and “southerners” ; “ Baganda” and “Westerners” ; etc. Sadly , this is the lens through which John views Uganda and Ugandans .

Our sectarian leaders the critics and escape scrutiny . This is what John is doing , when he declares ostentatiously , “Let others who thrive on tribalism perish “ . Honestly , John should address this admonition to himself , first and foremost .

John’s elliptical reference to “Ivorian” and  “Ivory Coast”  may have been lost on many readers . This is actually John’s triumphalist return to the scene of his previous crimes . John was one of the hatchet men who conducted a vicious campaign of persecution , disinformation and  smear against me , throughout my sojourn abroad . ( During this particular sojourn (1986-2007) , I served as professor at American University in Paris , President of the International Peace Institute in New York , and Under-Secretary General of the United Nations ) .

 For over twenty years , the Museveni regime rendered me a stateless person  , by denying me  Ugandan passport . The regime then fabricated the story that I had renounced my Ugandan citizenship ! John peddled this and other lies,  repeating them ad nauseum . I would be proud to be the citizen of any African country . But this was about my Ugandan citizenship , my birthright .

Incidentally , this explains why , on my return to Uganda in 2007 , there was a long standoff at Entebbe airport .  I had flown into the country without a passport .

Given his particular background and admirable talents ,  I feel very sad about John’s chosen path . As for the hatchet job on me over the years , I forgive John . The chief reason for doing so is very autobiographical . John is the son of the legendary William Nagenda of Namutamba , who was a pioneer and leading light of the East Africa Revival ( together with Simeoni Nsibambi, Blasio Kigozi , Yosia Kinuka , Joe Church , etc ) .

My own father , Yusto , became a leader in that movement . William and Yusto were close revival brethren . “ Nagenda “ remains a greatly revered and beloved name in my family . So , at a very personal , emotional  level , John is family .