Archive for the ‘uganda’ Category

The Extinction Protocol

November 1, 2012UGANDAAs of the end of October, 18 cases and nine deaths have been reported as a result of Marburg hemorrhagic fever outbreak, according to WHO. The outbreak began in mid-October, and cases have been reported from five districts in southwestern Uganda, Kampala, Ibanda, Mbarara and Kabarole, with a case fatality rate of 50%. Blood samples from nine patients have been confirmed for Marburg virus at the Uganda Virus Research Institute. Currently, 13 patients have been admitted to the hospital, and their contacts are listed for daily follow-up. The latest confirmed case was admitted to an Ibanda district isolation ward on Oct. 26. The WHO and international partners, including the CDC, the Uganda Red Cross, African Field Epidemiology Network and Médecins-Sans-Frontières, are supporting the national authorities in outbreak investigation and response. The national task force has identified additional health care workers and epidemiologists to strengthen…

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By Dr. Mercola

african child Poor African Countries Get Vaccines but No Food or Clean Water

As one of the world’s most well-known and respected voices, Microsoft founder Bill Gates has a unique opportunity to call attention to important social issues and make a huge impact worldwide.

Unfortunately Gates, through his foundation, has been partnering with not only biotech giant Monsanto to hoist genetically modified seeds on third-world countries, but also with Big Pharma, to whom he pledged $10 billion to provide vaccinations to children around the world.

This is billed as a humanitarian effort to save lives, but what children in developing countries need is healthy food, clean water and better sanitation.

These are the keys to preventing the spread of infectious disease, and they are being wholly ignored by the likes of Bill Gates and other vaccine proponents – at the children’s expense!

The Aftermath of a Bill Gates Vaccine Campaign …

An American family, the Gianelloni’s, visited a village in Uganda shortly after a Bill Gates vaccine campaign swept through and discovered what Bill Gates’ money does for hungry, sick children – essentially nothing.

The family found that the children were starving, living on one meager meal a day. Their only water source was the same stagnant stream that they bathed in. They had no sewage or sanitation. But, thanks to Gates, they were now vaccinated against measles and polio. Never mind that the most pressing epidemics in the area were actually Yellow Fever, malaria, HIV/AIDs and diarrhea …

Worse yet, one little girl who had received a measles vaccine two weeks earlier was now suffering with the measles as a result! After this blogger left, thanks to her and the mission group that arrived with her, the village had a water tank and clean water system, a cow, and a year’s worth of rice and beans. You can probably understand why the blogger made this comment about Gates’ “philanthropy”:

“I don’t care who you are or what side of the vaccine philosophy you fall under, there is no logic in the world that can explain that going into a remote village and giving children who only eat one meal a day and have never had clean drinking water, a vaccine. 

Seriously? Think about it. Can you imagine walking up to this precious little girl and saying ”I know you are starving, but here is a measles vaccine instead. I promise this will make you much healthier than food or water”. It’s a scary day when simple logic no longer exists.

Food & Water, nope. Vaccines, yep. And innocent children suffer the consequences. It’s absurd.

Food, Water, Sanitation is What’s Needed to Help Prevent Disease

The most vulnerable of the world’s children are those in the poorest countries where death and disease are often a result of malnutrition and lack of adequate sanitation and clean drinking water. In many third-world countries, children are often battling some sort of infection 200 days out of the year. Vaccines can be devastating to these already immunosuppressed children, as well as to adults, because vaccines often weaken and confuse the immune system, which ultimately increases the recipient’s susceptibility to the very infectious diseases vaccines are designed to prevent.

Nonetheless, emerging vaccine markets like third-world countries will soon outgrow developed markets by hundreds of billions of dollars. Emerging markets are areas of the world that are beginning to show promise as a profitable venture for many products, including vaccines. And emerging markets – primarily in developing countries in Southeast and Central Asia, and Africa – have been on vaccine makers’ radar for quite some time.

One reason that vaccine makers are interested in these parts of the world is that that’s where most of the world’s deaths from major infectious diseases occur. The only problem has been that, until recently, making vaccines for undeveloped countries with no money to pay for them was not exactly a profitable goal for vaccine makers.

Concerned that developed countries would have little or no resources for addressing serious infectious diseases if vaccine makers continued their pull-out, the World Health Organization and the G8 – the top developed countries in the world – responded with a plan for enticing vaccine companies to stay in the business. That plan was called Advance Market Commitments (AMCs).

AMCs Guarantee Drug Company Profits

Under AMCs, developed countries make legal, binding agreements to purchase vaccines that are needed in low-income countries. The purchase guarantees a bottom line for the manufacturers. In return, the manufacturers promise to sell those vaccines at reduced prices in the countries where they are most needed.

The idea is simple: “rich” nations sign legally binding commitments to purchase and/or finance an AMC vaccine once it’s ready for market. In return for the guaranteed market and income, drug companies promise to sell the new vaccine to “poor” countries at vastly reduced prices.

To speed up the process, the World Health Organization “prequalifies” AMC vaccines in an approval process that slices years off the time it normally takes a vaccine to make it to market.

Unfortunately, legally binding, advance market commitments to purchase vaccines that are mostly needed in third-world countries could backfire on developed countries that don’t need – or want – certain vaccines.

For instance, HPV (human papillomavirus) statistics show that HPV causes 4,000 deaths from cervical cancer per year in the United States, compared to 274,000 worldwide, 88 percent of which are in developing countries. So why were the HPV vaccines Gardasil and Cervarix — which have known safety issues — introduced in the U.S. and Europe, first, instead of going straight to where they’re needed most, if not to help sell huge quantities of the vaccine at premium prices, in anticipation of it becoming an AMC?

Even Gates and a Leading Vaccine Maker Admit Clean Water is Key

Malaria is another one of the top neglected diseases that world health leaders want to address with AMCs, but the ability to resist diseases like malaria requires a strong immune system, and for that, you require good nutrition, clean drinking water, and sanitation. If we want to help people in other countries to lower their malaria rates, and rates of other infectious diseases (like infection-associated diarrhea, which is one of the most common, and most preventable causes of death among children in the developing world) it would be wise to focus on these basics first.

Infectious organisms are more likely to penetrate the bodies of malnourished children due to inadequate vitamin C, which causes their skin to break down more easily and facilitates the entry of bacteria and other pathogens. The same is true for vitamin A deficiency, another common third-world problem, which results in increased susceptibility to infection and which could be rectified in individuals for pennies a day. Also, the living conditions of third-world children are often so poor that they are exposed to inordinately large numbers of pathogens, from which they have little defense.

In order to eradicate infectious disease from a nation, you also have to first address compromised immune systems. If you hit immune suppressed children with a potent, adjuvant-loaded vaccine, you’re far more likely to create new disease, not eradicate it.

With all of the billions being poured into vaccines to “save” the children, how many water purification systems could have been built? How many sanitation facilities? How many rations of meat and fresh produce?

Even Bill Gates himself has admitted that vaccines alone don’t eradicate disease. In a Wall Street Journal article about the resurgence of polio in African countries, Gates said that’s why he is revamping his disease fight to incorporate health, hygiene, and clean drinking water programs into vaccination programs.1 Polio spreads, after all, largely through feces-contaminated water, so ignoring that major risk factor while trying to eradicate the disease is ignorant, to put it nicely.

What’s really interesting is that at least one major vaccine maker has also echoed these sentiments, as evidenced on the front page of GlaxoSmithKline’s presentation to shareholders in June 2010:2

“With the exception of clean drinking water, vaccines are the most cost-effective public health measure,” GSK said.

What if, just what if, the same amount of money that has been spent on vaccines over the past decade had been spent on sanitation facilities, toilets, healthy food and clean water instead?

What You Can Do to Make a Difference

Increasing numbers of vaccines are being introduced not only in third-world countries but also in the developed world, and it’s simply not wise to blindly depend on the information coming directly from the vaccine makers’ PR departments, or from federal health officials, agencies or foundations that are mired in conflicts of interest with industry …

No matter what vaccination choices you make for yourself or your family, it is a basic human right to be fully informed about all the risks of medical interventions and pharmaceutical products, like vaccines, and have the freedom to refuse if you conclude the benefits do not outweigh the risks for you or your child.

Unfortunately, the business partnership between government health agencies and vaccine manufacturers is too close and is getting out of hand. There is a lot of discrimination against Americans, who want to be free to exercise their human right to informed consent when it comes to making voluntary decisions about which vaccines they and their children use.

We cannot allow that to continue.

While it seems “old-fashioned,” the only truly effective actions you can take to protect the right to informed consent to vaccination and expand your rights under the law to make voluntary vaccine choices, is to get personally involved with your state legislators and the leaders in your community.

THINK GLOBALLY, ACT LOCALLY.

Mass vaccination policies are made at the federal level but vaccine laws are made at the state level, and it is at the state level where your action to protect your vaccine choice rights will have the greatest impact.

Signing up to be a user of NVIC’s free online Advocacy Portal at www.NVICAdvocacy.org gives you access to practical, useful information to help you become an effective vaccine choice advocate in your own community. You will get real-time Action Alerts about what you can do if there are threats to vaccine exemptions in your state. With the click of a mouse or one touch on a Smartphone screen you will be put in touch with YOUR elected representatives so you can let them know how you feel and what you want them to do. Plus, when national vaccine issues come up, you will have all the information you need to make sure your voice is heard. So please, as your first step, sign up for the NVIC Advocacy Portal.

Right now, in California, the personal belief exemption is under attack by Pharma-funded medical trade organizations and public health officials trying to get a bill (AB 2109) passed that would require parents to get a medical doctor’s signature to file an exemption for personal religious and conscientious beliefs. Watch NVIC’s 90-second public service message and learn more about what you can do if you are a California resident.

Internet Resources

To learn more about vaccines, I encourage you to visit the following web pages on the National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC) website at www.NVIC.org:

  • NVIC Memorial for Vaccine Victims: View descriptions and photos of children and adults, who have suffered vaccine reactions, injuries and deaths. If you or your child experiences an adverse vaccine event, please consider posting and sharing your story here.
  • If You Vaccinate, Ask 8 Questions: Learn how to recognize vaccine reaction symptoms and prevent vaccine injuries.
  • Vaccine Freedom Wall: View or post descriptions of harassment by doctors or state officials for making independent vaccine choices.
  • Vaccine Ingredient Calculator (VIC): Find out just how much aluminum, mercury and other ingredients are in the vaccines your doctor is recommending for you or your child.
  • Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS) on MedAlerts. Search the government’s VAERS database to find out what kinds of vaccine reactions, injuries and deaths have been reported by patients and heath care workers giving vaccines.

Find a Doctor Who Will Listen to Your Concerns

Last but not least, if your pediatrician or doctor refuses to provide medical care to you or your child unless you agree to get vaccines you don’t want, I strongly encourage you to have the courage to find another doctor. Harassment, intimidation, and refusal of medical care is becoming the modus operandi of the medical establishment in an effort to punish those patients and parents, who become truly educated about health and vaccination and want to make vaccine choices instead of being forced to follow risky one-size-fits-all vaccine policies.

If you are treated with disrespect or are harassed in any way by a doctor (or government official), do not engage in an unproductive argument. You may want to contact an attorney, your elected state representatives or local media, if you or your child are threatened.

That said, there is hope.

At least 15 percent of young doctors recently polled admit that they’re starting to adopt a more individualized approach to vaccinations in direct response to the vaccine safety concerns of parents. It is good news that there is a growing number of smart young doctors, who prefer to work as partners with parents in making personalized vaccine decisions for children, including delaying vaccinations or giving children fewer vaccines on the same day or continuing to provide medical care for those families, who decline use of one or more vaccines.

So take the time to locate and connect with a doctor who treats you with compassion and respect and is willing to work with you to do what is right for your child, and isn’t just competing for government incentives designed to increase vaccination rates at any cost.

Read the entire article here: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/08/06/healthy-foods-not-vaccines.aspx

Fair Use Notice: This web site contains some copyrighted material whose use has not been authorized by the copyright owners. We believe that this not-for-profit, educational use on the Web constitutes a fair use of the copyrighted material (as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. If you wish to use this copyrighted material for purposes that go beyond fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. Fair Use notwithstanding we will immediately comply with any copyright owner who wants their material removed or modified, wants us to link to their web site

HARDA = Horn of Africa Relief and Development Agency.

FAMINE IN HORN OF AFRICA

What is HARDA doing??

HARDA is working with our on the ground partners whom, as you can see from the photo on the left, are distributing food aid right now. Dr Mohamud Sheikh, an executive member of HARDA, has been using his holiday to help with our initial aid effort in Northern Kenya, thanks to a very generous donation from Muslim Aid Australia. He reports “we fed up to 5,927, buying only essential food stuff to increase the number of people that we can reach. We provided Corn meal (maize flour), Oil and Beans – the common diet of the people. The community elders were so pleased that we dd not leave without feedng anyone who turned up for food”.

Help urgently needed

The United Nations declared a famine in parts of Somalia. Famine is declared when a number of preconditions are met. These include when hunger rates among children rise above thirty precent and many people are unable to get food and other basic needs. The UN believes that it is likely that tens of thousands have already died, the majority of these being children.

And the famine is spreading with the Horn of Africa experiencing its worst drought in sixty years. UN officials have said more than eleven million people are in need of food aid.

What can you do??

Please HELP those in such desperate need. Each life is precious and each donation helps preserve a life!
100% of what you donate is going directly to those in need, providing much needed food to those heading to the camps and to those outside the camps who are dying so close to help.
The pictures and stories coming out of these regions would break your heart; and we have so much in comparison to their need!


Donate to HARDA’s HORN OF AFRICA FAMINE AID APPEAL | www.harda.info

Twitter: @AussieActivist

When this decade started in 2001, Museveni had been in power for 15 years. As it ends, he is the only regional leader still in office who was in when it started. The events that ensured that climaxed at 3:10 p.m. on Tuesday July 12, 2005.

At that moment Uganda’s parliament was involved in what historians like to call a defining moment. It marked the end of an arduous process to amend Article 105 (2) of the constitution to remove presidential term limits.

On that day, Jacob Oulanya, the burly man with a penchant for wearing sharp suits complete with pocket handkerchief and bowtie and whose thick moustache appears to block out his nose whenever he speaks, broke his silence. The amendment, he said, had been coached not to dwell on the principle behind term limits. Rather the arguments had “zeroed down on those who like President Museveni and those who hate him.” Oulanya was at the time the MP of Moro County in Gulu district and chairman of the Legal Committee of parliament which scrutinised the amendment.

The removal of term limits on the presidency marked the maturation of political corruption. Efforts by prominent Museveni ministers against the third term campaign did not change Museveni’s determination to have article 105 of the 1995 constitution repealed. Instead, ministers Jaberi Bidandi Ssali, Eriya Kategaya and Miria Matembe were dropped from cabinet. In the end, Shs 5 million was paid to each of 222 MPs to let Museveni have his way. Only 37 MPs voted against the bill and two abstained. Did the MPs realise that his personalisation of a momentous question of principle marked the defining political moment of the last decade?

Sometimes to understand such an unfathomable question one needs an anchor in something less speculative.

In my case, it was an article by BBC Washington Correspondent Steve Kingstone on October 2, 2010 that spurred the thought. It was titled `How President Lula changed Brazil’ and it started with the paragraph: “I used to tell visitors to close their eyes as I drove them into Sao Paulo from the airport. That was seven years ago, when the first impression of South America’s biggest city was a pot-holed motorway running parallel to a stinking river…”

Does that sound familiar? Possibly yes.

At the heart of the debate was whether President Museveni could ever democratically relinquish power.

The events of July 12, 2005 have become even more poignant as the decade ends. They make 2005 the defining year of the decade. In that year, Uganda’s founding President Milton Obote died, and leading opposition politician, Rt. Col. Dr Kizza Besigye was arrested on a trumped-up rape case, Uganda ditched the Movement system for multiparty politics, and a military commando squad known as Black Mamba besieged the High Court in a flagrant re-arrest of treason suspects that had been granted bail.

Those events are comparable regionally, only to the fallout from the death in a mysterious helicopter crash of the legendary leader of the Sudanese Peoples Liberation Army (SPLA), Col. John Garanga, and the deployment of Ugandan army troops in Somalia.

They eclipse even Museveni’s election victories in 2001 and 2006, the government of Uganda peace talks with the LRA in Juba in 2006, the 2007 Kampala Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting and its entrenching of corruption, the 2009 Buganda riots, and the 2010 signing of the East African Community Common Market Protocol.

Yet some of the events, like the rift between Buganda kingdom and the central government, corruption and conduct of the February 18, 2011 general elections are already impacting on the new decade.

The Brazil story has a happy ending. Kingstone was there to cover the election in which, in November 2010, President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva passed on the baton to his anointed successor, Dilma Rousseff. In power for only eight years, Lula cleared the pot-holed motorways, pushed 29 million Brazilians into the middle class, created 2.5 million jobs in 2010 alone, eradicated hunger, improved education and health and transformed Brazil from a borrower from the IMF to a lender. On December 16, he proudly presented a review of his eight year in power to his cabinet in six volumes and is leaving office when over 80 percent of Brazilians approve of his work.

Walking along the Upper Kololo Terrace, just after the swanky Protea Hotel in the high end section of Kampala city, one easily notices a new row of bulletin billboards exhorting passersby to vote for Museveni in the Feb. 18 presidential elections.

They are professionally erected low at car windshield level to catch the driver’s eye and with just a few words. Next to them on the same road, in the section just above Kololo Airstrip, venue of national celebrations is another row of neat bulletin billboards. These ones are for MTN Uganda, a subsidiary of the South African telecom giant. The placement is possibly coincidental but very apt: Museveni’s brand colour, like MTN’s, is yellow. Going forward, it appears the fate of the most important engine of his success, big business, will become more intertwined with the fortunes of the most powerful person in Uganda, Museveni.

The decade started well enough for Museveni.

In March 2001, he trounced a pack of five to emerge with 69 percent of the vote in the presidential elections. Optimism was high. He had promised it was his last term and most voters looked forward to a peaceful transition with a new face at the top in 2006. It did not happen. Museveni clang on and as the decade ends, it makes more sense to assess what the future will be like under him than speculate on when he will quit.

Meanwhile, corruption has grown exponentially. When the decade began the biggest scandal was the Shs 11 billion purchase of four junk Mi-24 helicopters by the UPDF that was before the Justice Sebutinde Commission of Inquiry in 2001. This was followed closely by a similar probe in the Uganda Revenue Authority in 2002.

However, the money involved is laughable compared to what is being swindled today. As the decade ends, the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) of Parliament chaired by MP Nandala Mafabi has just completed a probe into the squandering of Shs 500 billion meant for hosting of CHOGM. Two years ago, there was the case of Amama Mbabazi allegedly influencing NSSF to buy his 400 acre land in Temangalo at Shs 11 billion.

And the impunity has burgeoned. Just as only Emma Katto, the fixer, was the fall guy in the Sebutinde junk helicopters inquiry and just as Sebutinde’s report on URA was quashed by court as her fellow commissioners, Fawn Cousens and James Kahooza, disowned it, PAC’s CHOGM report was defeated on a technicality in parliament and Mbabazi walked scot-free from the Temangalo scandal.

Many people close to Museveni are tainted. The British jailed and deported Museveni’s aide; Ananias Tumukunde for stealing Shs 117 million from the government of Uganda in inflated procurement bills. On December 9, 2009 the British handed a cheque for the amount to the IGG at a public function in Kampala. But Museveni kept Tumukunde.

As the decade ends, a WikiLeak of US diplomatic cables reveals that the US Ambassador in Kampala, Jerry Lanier wrote that two ministers, Hilary Onek and Amama Mbabazi took bribes from an oil company in what could mark the first cases of the so-called `oil curse’.

As the decade ends, oil might not be the only big business that Ugandans are to watch with trepidation.

Uganda’s biggest telecom company is losing market share in a volatile market. Its market share is down to an unconfirmed 60 percent due to competition from new entrants and its Average Revenue per User (ARPU) is the lowest in the region at US$ 5. As a result, the only good news at the MTN Towers is the 5 percent increase in subscribers to 6,215,000 by Q3 of 2010.

This gloom is in sharp contrast to the excitement at MTN at the start of the decade. The year 2001 was the second that MTN Uganda, which had been in operation for two years, made a profit. At the time, it had about 150,000 subscribers and controlled over 75 percent of the mobile phone market and 60 percent of the whole telecom market. Thomas Bragaw was the MTN Uganda Chief Executive Officer at the start of the decade. Just three months before the New Year, he had a launched the first ever fibre optic cable in Africa. It linked Kampala City’s business district and industrial area.

But big business could suffer more as big money believed to be ill-gotten has been discovered in government official’s homes instead of banks. Damian Akankwasa, a National Forestry Authority managing director had Shs900 million in his house and another Shs500 million was found in the family of Museveni’s brother, Salim Saleh.

Regionally, on July 11, 2010 Kampala witnessed twin bomb attacks that left at least 76 people dead and scores injured. The Somali-based al-Shabaab claimed responsibility arguing that it was punishment for Uganda’s involvement in the affairs of their country Somalia. As the decade ends, the referendum in Southern Sudan promises self-determination for John Garang’s people. But there is apprehension that it could ignite another regional conflict.

The 20 year-long war of Joseph Kony’s Lord’s Resistance Army is quiet but not quashed. The butcher of the north is somewhere in the jungles of Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Southern Sudan. Can he return to haunt the north? Some say, possibly not.

As reported By Mubatsi Asinja Habati – THE INDEPENDENT

Ugandan police arrest opposition leader – Africa – Al Jazeera English.

Ugandan police have arrested opposition leader Kizza Besigye ahead of a planned protest over spiralling food and fuel prices in the capital Kampala.

A senior official from Besigye’s party , the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC), said he was arrested on Monday as he prepared to go to work.

“Besigye was arrested as he left his house this morning and is being held in Kasangati” police station on the outskirts of Kampala, said Alice Alaso, the secretary general of the FDC.

Besigye, who came a distant second in the February 18 election that was won by Yoweri Museveni, the president, had threatened to stage Egypt-style protests if the election was rigged, but stopped short of staging a protest though he dismissed the vote as fraudulent.

On April 11 Besigye was arrested, along with several opposition politicians, for taking part in a march dubbed “walk to work” where marchers refuse to use their cars and walk to work as a protest against high fuel prices.

Al Jazeera’s Malcom Webb in Kampala said the high prices are an opportunity for the opposition to get people on the streets.

“People are unhappy; people are restless,” he said.

Police spokesperson Judith Nabakooba confirmed the arrest and said it was in connection with the planned demonstration.

Besigye, 54, walked to church unobstructed on Sunday but his “walk to work” campaign has been roundly blocked.

Museveni has warned he will deal firmly with any unauthorised demonstrations and mocked Besigye in a press conference on Saturday.

“We made it clear to Besigye that you are not going to demonstrate or to walk. If you want to walk, go somewhere and take a walk,” Museveni said.

Ugandan police on Thursday clashed with protesters in Kampala and several other towns as Besigye appeared bent on opposing the regime.

Protesters say steep prices are due to bad governance, but Museveni, who has ruled the east African country for a quarter of a century, insisted drought and foreign factors were to blame.

“Food prices have gone up because of unreliable rain and the bigger market in the region. Will the world prices go down because Besigye has demonstrated?” he said.

The consumer price index grew by four per cent in March from the previous month and the country’s year-on-year inflation rate stands at 11.1 per cent.

Museveni argued that Besigye’s opposition campaign risked destabilising the economy further and urged Ugandans to act responsibly and use fuel sparingly

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HARDA (Horn of Africa Relief and Development Agency) is holding our Family Wellbeing Day this Saturday, October 30th at Auburn Park, Macquarie Rd, Auburn NSW from 10am to 3pm.

Building Resilience – Good Friends help us bounce back!

There will be Jumping Castle, Animal Farm, DJ Prince 2000, Celebrity Soccer Player, Novelty Races, Halal BBQ, Drumming Workshops, Hip Hop Workshop, Information Stalls and Much More!

All are welcome to this FREE Event. for more information visit HARDA Website or call 02 8762 4225 or email harda@harda.org.au

My Opinion

(“Donor aid should come in areas where Uganda needs development not in governance,” Mr Museveni said. “I am already an expert in governance who can again lecture me about governance?”)  – “Honestly who is this guy kidding? he is an expert in governance!? so why is his country full of corrupt politicians and military officials and its countrymen do not know, information is not made public? why do people have no access to clean water? why do you have rebels attacking innocent civilians, why, why, why? oh it must be because you have such great governance skills!

Sheesh, i have not heard such crap before as what i hear from this man repeatedly! Taking into consideration it was this man who abolished term limits for presidents, thus allowing him to be president as long as he wants to.  Acts of intimidation by military and politicians of the opposite party, tortures and abductions, missing people and murder.  Not to mention the current bill going through legislation that will effectively ban “free media”. Without media free from government control, just like Iran, the country will become a dictatorship country.  Museveni YOU ARE a Dictator. You overtook a government with military force (albeit he was a dictator too) and committed crimes against humanity yet you say it was all Dr Obote and his army, I suggest to you that it was NOT all him and that you also, are responsible for mass murder, conscription of children for military use, crimes against humanity and corruption.  Regardless of the crimes committed by  Dr Obote and his army, you sir are just as evil as him. You have dictated to your country men what they need to hear and not what is actually happening. You have twisted your reasoning and bargained your way into a position of power, like Kony, you will not relenquish that power, until you do, Uganda will suffer.

I think the Donor countries have every right to call out Museveni on his lack of governance not his expertise.  Alot of his countries budget is made up from donor funds sent by these countries.  If he has and still is letting down his countrymen by being a dictator, imagine how hard their lives would become if the donor countries pulled their funds, i suggest mass malnutrition and poverty and crime would seriously escalate. Northern Uganda has finally found some kind of peace and people are moving home from the IDP camps. The country is finally coming slowly with stability and yet this man continually pushes the boundaries with his “im holier than thou” attitude. He seems to think that he is superior to his fellow man.

I really hope that for the sake of All Ugandans, Museveni is not re-elected president again, as i feel that the country will stop going forward and rather start heading in reverse. All the things that have been achieved will become like a distant memory. ”

Rebecca Fowler – Freeuganda

The Report

President Museveni has hit back in a continuing row with donors telling them not to ask questions about governance. The President’s comments on Friday came on the same day this newspaper revealed that three senior western diplomats had written to the Electoral Commission over the slow pace of reforms ahead of next year’s election.

Put aid elsewhere

Speaking during the launch of a book on economic reforms in Uganda, President Museveni said donors should not tie development assistance to demands for better governance and democracy. “Donor aid should come in areas where Uganda needs development not in governance,” Mr Museveni said. “I am already an expert in governance who can again lecture me about governance?”

While President Museveni has previously told off donors, his latest comments come amidst growing local and international pressure on his government to improve governance and protect civil liberties.

The United States government, which is a key ally, has made democracy and good governance top of its agenda in Uganda under the Obama administration and is closely monitoring the road to the election.

The US ambassador to Uganda, Mr Jerry Lanier and his counterparts Martin Shearman (UK) and Joroen Verhaul (Netherlands) on March 3 co-wrote to Badru Kiggundu, the Electoral Commission chairman, warning that a failure to carry out reforms could erode confidence in the EC and put the credibility of the 2011 election at risk.

The government has brought four Bills to Parliament in response to calls for electoral reform but donors, the opposition and independent viewers say these are inadequate.

President Museveni’s statement indicates the government’s unwillingness to respond to pressure to implement more radical reforms such as disbanding the Electoral Commission as called for by the opposition.

Donors still fund a third of the national budget but say governance failures are affecting development and national stability. The World Bank resident representative recently issued its strongest statement yet in a scathing criticism of the government’s failure to deal with corruption.

Opposition chips in
While the President wants to keep donors out of the domestic political sphere, the opposition wants more involvement by the international community.

Responding to the envoy’s letter to the Electoral Commission, the acting Leader of the Opposition in Parliament, Mr Christopher Kibanzanga (FDC; Busongora South), said: “The donors have the key; they pushed President Museveni to accept multi-partyism [in 2005] and when they called him over the Anti-homosexuality Bill, the President immediately changed his position.”

MP Kibanzanga added: “If the donors tell him to accept the electoral reforms we are pushing for as the opposition, there is no doubt Mr Museveni will accept them within days.”

Information minister Kabakumba Masiko, however, said it was irregular for diplomats to bypass the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and transact business directly with domestic institutions. “They should use the right channel and work with [government] to concretise democratic gains in the country and the achievements so far made by the EC,” she said.

via Daily Monitor: Truth Everyday; Uganda News, Business, Travel, Sports, Elections  – Museveni hits back in row with donors.

By Milton Olupot

PRESIDENT Yoweri Museveni has said he is ready to be tried by the International Criminal Court (ICC), if he committed crimes against humanity.

The President said this during the launch of the National Resistance Movement (NRM) Communication Bureau in Kampala on Friday.

Parliament last week passed the ICC Bill, three years after it was tabled. The Bill makes a provision in Uganda’s law for the prosecution and punishment for international crimes against humanity and war crimes.

Asked by journalists whether he would surrender any of the government officials or himself to the court now that Uganda had passed the Bill, Museveni said he would be willing to stand trial.

“I would be very happy to be tried. If I committed crimes against humanity, I should be tried,” he replied.

Mengo has threatened to drag some government and security officials to the ICC for quelling the September riots, in which more than 20 people were killed.

The President, however, noted that the law in Uganda allows for private prosecution. He wondered why those who talk about the ICC have not brought any criminal charges against security officers.

“Certainly if any of our officers committed any crimes, we would have tried them here,” he said. “Since we came to power, we have executed 123 people for killing others. Those going to The Hague are wasting their time.”

Responding to the question that LRA leader Joseph Kony was in Darfur and being facilitated by the Sudanese government, Museveni said Ugandan troops pursuing the rebels in the Central African Republic had sent a brief that Kony and a small group of his fighters had disappeared near Darfur.

He, however, assured Ugandans that Kony and his fighters would never come back to Uganda.

“If the Sudanese want to accommodate him in Darfur, that is upon them. Darfur is 1,000 miles away from Uganda. Why should I worry about a man who is 1,000 miles away?”

Kony and his commanders were indicted by the ICC in 2005. The court wants them to face trial for crimes against humanity. In their 22-year war, the LRA killed, maimed, raped and abducted civilians in northern Uganda.

The Bill passed last week is intended to enforce the law in Uganda after the Rome Statute was adopted by the UN in 1998 and ratified by Uganda in 2002.

It will enable Uganda to co-operate with the ICC in the investigation and prosecution of people accused of war crimes and crimes against humanity.

It further provides for the arrest and surrender to the ICC of persons alleged to have committed crimes against humanity, in addition to enabling the ICC conduct proceedings in Uganda.

A total of 110 countries have ratified the Rome Statute. The US and China have not done so.

via Welcome To The Sunday Vision online: Uganda’s leading weekly.

My Thoughts

“President Museveni needs to stand trial for his crimes against humanity.  It is well documented and the early NRA used child soldiers as well as  forced conscription of children into the NRA. Museveni is just another tyrant who has only fixed the area’s that he wanted fixed. He may have bought relative stability to the south but what about the north? for 24 yrs he allowed Kony and his LRA Rebels to pillage, rape and abduct the Acholi and Luo of Northern Uganda. Then the Ugandan military pushed them over the border into DRC, Sudan and CAR – now the LRA are committing the same crimes in those countries.  As he say’s “why should i worry about a person who is 1000 miles away” – he never worried even when kony was in the North of Uganda. He didn’t care as Kony was more prone to attack the civilians than the soliders. Its as if Museveni wanted to destroy the Acholi. There are also documented cases of Museveni’s NRA pillaging, Raping and Torturing civilians in the North as well. Stealing cattle and maiming/murdering those who stood in the way.

Museveni MUST be investigated by the ICC and must be tried for his part in the NRA take over of DR Obote’s government.

I really feel for the people of Uganda, Amin, Obote & Museveni are all tyrannts, who have manipulated their government and rulings to suit themselves. They want the power and money and therefore will use it against any who challenge them.

My only hope is that the 2011 elections in Uganda are a Free and Fair election and that someone else is elected president. Museveni believes that Roads are the key to the country’s future. Infastructure, Electricity, Access to clean water and health care and what the country needs in order to survive, with less poverty and illness.

Mr Museveni, Shame On YOU! ”

Rebecca Fowler – Freeuganda

YouTube – Koh Reports – Embracing Evaline.

The story of a beautiful young Ugandan lady. I am honored to be a friend of her’s on Facebook and one day hope to meet with Evaline. God bless those still trapped in the bush, may this war have an end soon.  With International pressure we call all lend a hand in ending this war. Visit Invisible Children and see how you can help.

As reported on Monitor Online

“there is one sentence in this whole article that sums the entire thing up and i could not have said it any better myself  “Museveni has so changed Uganda that everything revolves around him.”” Rebecca Fowler

NRM failures at a glance

* Failed to deliver free-and-fair elections.

* Failed to create consensus on democracy, citizenship, political systems, respect and protection of human rights, fundamental freedoms and electoral system.

* The President has an over-bearing influence over Parliament, often pushing MPs to pass laws he is interested in.

* The appointment of political cadres to the bench could jeopardise the independence of the Judiciary

* Other agencies like the Police, Civil Service, Teaching Service are also being “infiltrated” by military and political appointees.

* Political parties have been denied space to organise while the Movement continues to operate side by side with other parties despite claims of a multi-party dispensation.

* Employment in the formal sector remains low.

* Tax collection has stagnated at 12/13 per cent–below the African avarage of 18 per cent.

* Corruption has reached the Mobutu/Suharto/Ferdinand levels.

* Too many ghosts. Ghost teachers and students, ghost health workers and health facilities.

* Merit no longer a requirement in appointments and promotions in government jobs.

* The North was at war for over two decades and remains underdeveloped.

Mr Augustine Ruzindana served in the NRM government as Inspector General of Government and also represented Ruhaama County in the 7th Parliament. The Forum for Democratic Change Secretary for Research explains why no one should toast to President Museveni’s 24 years of power.

The last 24 years have been a mixture of successes, failures and disappointments. Museveni has had significant impact on so many aspects of the country and the lives of its people and within the Great Lakes region but I will only be able to deal with a few of them, in particular governance and politics.

His greatest success has been his ability to hold power for so long no matter what he has done with that power. His greatest disappointment has been failure to deliver free and fair elections and to transform the country from least developed to a developed industrial country which he had been accusing other leaders of failing to do.

He has also failed to create consensus on such issues as democracy, citizenship, political systems, respect and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms, electoral system (see the representation of NUDIPU an NGO, UPDF, NOTU in parliament), system of local government (federalism) and the separation of his party from the state.

After 24 years the basis of Museveni’s tenure of power remains Legal Notice No.1 of 1986 issued immediately after the NRA captured power on January 25th 1986. Museveni, as Chair of the High Command of the NRA, ruled by decree until Legal Notice No.1 of 1986 (Amendment) Decree of 1987 vested “All Legislative powers” in the National Resistance Council (NRC).

During the initial years major decisions like the four-year initial transitional period and the restoration of the Kabaka were made by the NRA Army Council not the NRC, which was the top political organ of the NRM party and also chaired by Museveni.

Thus, Museveni was legally the head of the Legislature and the Executive at the same time until the 6th Parliament elected in 1996 under the 1995 Constitution. This should explain why the checks and balances of the 1995 Constitution failed to work.

With the experience of the bush days and the first 10 years of NRM rule, Museveni still looks at Parliament as an organ of the NRM and the Speaker as one of his appointees deployed to chair Parliament.

This explains why the late James Wapakhabulo and the late Francis Ayume could be removed from being Speaker without raising a murmur of protest. This is also why Museveni still decides what laws Parliament passes and when. The Land Amendment Act and the Regional Tier Bill are recent examples. In reality the independent Parliament created by the Constitution does not exist, it is just the NRC with another name.

The only organ of state that did not come under the President’s direct control was the Judiciary and to this day, even if it is gradually changing through appointment of NRM supporters, it is still under frequent unjustified attack by the President.

Militarised Police
Similarly, the Police never came under the direct control of the NRM until recently when serving military officers were appointed to head it, thus facilitating the posting of military officers to various departments and sections of the police, especially the intelligence department that replaced Special Branch.

The Civil Service and the Teaching Service are also undergoing similar changes through appointment and the recent patriotism programmes. This is the background to the power equation under Museveni/NRM rule. All the congratulatory messages in the media capture this reality by showing the picture of the man to whom the messages are sent.

One man’s show
Power in the army, the executive and the legislature has been held by one man since January 1986. He has exercised this power largely to continue as president indefinitely.

The first 10 years were of great promise and registered most successes. The President formed a broad-based government accommodating different political views and interests. The system of decentralisation and resistance councils (now local councils) with elected leaders was introduced.

Increased press freedom coupled with freedom for civil society to organise seemed to create prerequisites for a thriving democracy. These measures created immense good will and popularity for Museveni and his party. However, from the very beginning at no time was freedom for political parties to organise tolerated.

This has been a consistent position which to this day accounts for persisting police repression of activities of political parties.
While addressing the Movement National Conference on March 30, 2003 Museveni told the participants: “Because of the nature of our society, we shall not be a party”, but “we must have a system of allowing people who do not want to be part of the Movement to find their own home.” (New Vision, March 31, 2003).

Thus the movement system continues to operate as before side-by-side with political parties which are allowed to operate within restricted bounds.

Case of EC
The NRM political school managed by the UPDF continues to operate as before. The movement-era Electoral Commission remains in place with members appointed on the same criteria and in the same manner as RDCs. To maintain local councils as structures of the NRM, competitive elections have not been held since 2006 when their terms of office expired.

With regard to the economy, there were successes in turning round the economy and in maintaining macro-economic stability.
The rehabilitation and reconstruction phase attracted huge international support resulting in improved physical and social infrastructure. Employment levels in the formal sectors remain very low.

Tax collection improved but is dominated by indirect and import taxes and has stagnated at 12/13 per cent far below the African average of 18 per cent (Kenya 24 per cent).

Reports of foreign investment are of licensed projects by the UIA not of actual investment made. The country has registered respectable growth rates but the high birth rate and huge disparities between the rich and poor make the growth another ghost to the majority.

Governance, human rights protection, openness and accountability, due process and fair trial improved for sometime but there has been a sharp decline in the last 10 years.

The levels of corruption have reached the Mobutu/Suharto/Ferdinand Marcos levels and the regime can be rightly classified as a kleptocracy; corruption, loss of gains that had been made, has occurred at central and local government levels undermining service delivery so much so that no one takes the President’s lamentations seriously.

There are ghost teachers and students, ghost health workers and ghost health facilities and payment for air supply has become common place. Numerous scandals involving high level personalities have created a thriving sector of commissions of inquiry. Nepotism and cronyism are dominant features in recruitment, promotions and in doing business with government.

Greatest failure
The greatest failure, however, has been the failure to deliver free-and-fair elections, the alleged cause of the Luwero war. The elections of 1996, 2001, 2006 under Museveni have not been deemed free and fair.

It seems this is an ingrained character trait as in some of these elections Museveni could have won without rigging.
For elections to be considered free-and-fair, there must be agreed rules for the electoral process and they must be conducted by an electoral management body accepted and respected by all the participants in the elections.

Failure to meet this requirement explains why elections are always considered rigged and do not achieve the finality they should.

Museveni has so changed Uganda that everything revolves around him.

The 24 years have been a movement from chaos (Lutwa) and tyrannical instability (Obote 11) to relative peace and more or less tyrannical stability.

via Daily Monitor: Truth Everyday; Uganda News, Business, Travel, Sports, Elections  – MUSEVENI 24 YEARS LATER: It has been a move from chaos to tyranny and tyrannical stability.

This is an excerpt from a news paper clip regarding Uganda and their President Museveni and my opinion to the comment in bold of his.

President Museveni has started a campaign to improve household income among rural farmers to enhance the fight against poverty. The President, who visited farmers in Mukono and rewarded them for their achievements in implementing National Agriculture Advisory (Naads) programmes, pledged his commitment to fight poverty at household level.

Many people speak about development but they do not understand it because they keep on referring development to tarmac roads, electricity and schools but to me, I consider household income. If we achieve this, our road to development is done,” Mr Museveni said.

via Daily Monitor: Truth Everyday; Uganda News, Business, Travel, Sports, Elections  – Museveni launches campaign to improve household income.

What on earth is this guy thinking? “They keep on referring to development to tarmac roads, electricity and schools..” umm, HELLO!!  That is exactly WHAT development is! What is the point in having a higher “household” income when the  schools in the community lack basic items, the houses lack access to electricity, people cannot farm because of drought and lack of water, El Nino is affecting the weather and poverty and hunger are rife,  oh and also, you tell me Mr Museveni how are you going to Raise the “household income” for those rural farmers in times such as today’s droughts, in floods and the El Nino effect that has been happening in Rural and Sub-Saharan Africa (including your own Uganda). The last line of the news report says “Mukono District Chairman Francis Lukooya Mukoome asked the government to include provision of fertilisers under the Naads programme to help farmers realise their targets, saying the soils were no longer fertile.” again i ask the question how??

Instead of Mr Museveni telling his people what they need, maybe for once he needs to actually listen to his citizens! Oh, wait i forgot, this is just another Rebel leader who over threw yet another Rebel leader in a long history of Military Coup’s and rebel leaders!

What the Ugandan’s need is a President who is willing to listen to it’s people and then make decisions, not tell them what they need, how would he know when he lives his life of luxury in Kampala and they are living in poverty and suffering conditions in their counties and communities. Has he forgotten about what he was responsible for back in the 1980’s? it appears so!

George W. Bush, the worst US President ever (as far as i’m concerned) praised Mr Museveni for what he is doing for Ugandan’s, why? So that Mr Museveni would support his campaign on “Terror and Terrorism” against Saddam Hussain. Praised him for what? sending over 1 Million people into displacement camps? Leaving them with little, if any protection against the rebels they were supposedly “protecting” them from? Allowing the LRA to pillage, rape, abduct and destroy the lives of so many in Northern Uganda and since then, DRC and CAR as well as Southern Sudan!

Shame on you Mr Bush, your words ensured this guys ego swelled to the size of an elephant that he decided to change laws to initially keep himself as president until he was the age of 75 (or similar from what i’ve read).

I truly feel for the Ugandan’s as i see through their history they  have been dealt the “raw end of  the stick” so many times with Amin, Obote, Museveni, Kony and that is to just mention a few!

Mr Museveni, when 90-95% of the citizens of your country have access to electricity and clean water, then can you say that “development” is  “higher household income”

Rebecca Fowler

(*Freeuganda) – All opinions expressed on this blog are that of my own opinion and do not express those opinions of any corporations or non profits that i may belong to.

Some of the patients at Gulu hospital sleeping on spring beds without mattresses

By Chris Ocowun

MANY patients at Gulu referral hospital sleep on the floor, or on beds without mattresses. Terezina Akot, 60, said she was forced to buy papyrus mats to spread on the floor for her patient.

“When we came we found all the beds occupied. We had to buy papyrus mats. That is where we sleep with many other patients,” Akot narrated.

She told The New Vision last Thursday that other patients sleep on clothing.

Conditions at night are said to be worse with patients and their caretakers fighting for space on the ward floors with some sleeping in the corridors.

“Even the drugs are not enough. After surgical operations, the medical workers tell us to buy medicine. I have been here for one month and bought drugs worth sh16,000, yet there is no improvement in my condition,” said Lily Auno, who was nursing a large wound on her leg.

Conditions in the maternity ward are worse. Mothers who have just given birth are told to vacate their beds for women who are in labour.

The wards for surgery, children and out-patients are also over-crowded.

“On Mondays, more than 500 patients queue at the dispensing window to receive drugs, Others sit under the sun to wait for drugs. We used to have about 100 patients at the out-patients department on Mondays,” a medic remarked.

Nurses noted that though some of the wards have been renovated, they lacked mattresses, beddings and other accessories, and that the few remaining beds in them were in poor condition.

The medical superintendent of the hospital, Dr. Yovenito Agel Akii, acknowledged the number of inpatients in the various wards was more than double their capacity, and that there was a shortage of drugs, supplies and medical workers: “Gulu referral hospital is a 250-bed hospital and yet in the last six months, the number of our inpatients has doubled from 400-600. We receieve a budget for 250 beds and yet we are handling double this number.”

read the full report via New Vision Online : Gulu hospital lacks beds.

opinion by: Andrew M. Mwenda

6 January 2010 – AllAfrica Post

Kampala — Since Ndorwa West MP David Bahati introduced a bill to kill homosexuals, I have become wary of the behaviour of Uganda’s international donors. They have threatened to cut off aid if the government goes ahead with the bill. This way, they are literally using their money to blackmail government to respect gay rights. Yet this approach, although driven by good intentions, is actually counterproductive.

Those hostile to homosexuals argue that gays are promoted by the West with money to undermine African culture although they have not produced even a scintilla of evidence to support this claim. But by threatening aid cuts if the bill is passed, donors are inadvertently proving the purveyors of this argument right. Donors should learn that cultural change should be a gradual internal process. To use force to make people change their attitudes would require a high amount of coercion that is certainly undesirable. Intimidation and blackmail are not effective weapons against cultural bigotry; open debate is.

In threatening aid cuts, I suspect Western leaders are actually addressing their constituents. Their electorates see the bill as a barbaric move to suppress a fundamental right. However, donors need to be careful not to be seen to be arm-twisting the government. The biggest challenge gays and lesbians face in Uganda is not state law (however draconian) but deeply held cultural bigotry by the society.

Therefore, a democratic government would find it difficult to resist popular pressure to hang homosexuals. Multitudes of Ugandans are homophobic and would not hesitate to sanction genocide against gays. To secure attitudinal change through force would require unprecedented violence. Our challenge is how to foster openness and tolerance. This can only be achieved through open debate.

This is why although Bahati is subjectively homophobic, he is objectively an ally of gays. By introducing his bill with provisions to kill gays, he has inadvertently opened debate on a subject that has been taboo in Uganda. In the process, he has given gays and progressive intellectuals an opportunity and a platform to enlighten Ugandans about sexual diversity and expose the fallacies that inform homophobia.

Since I wrote a column criticising Bahati, I have been impressed by the number of young Ugandans who have written to me saying the debate has made them rethink their prejudice. There have been critics as well and others who wrote calling me names. I had expected worse. My column also generated fierce debate on our website with the anti-homosexual side suffering a devastating but delicious intellectual beating.

A particular problem with Ugandan society is its low levels of openness. As evolutionary psychologist Geoffrey Miller has written, openness to experience implies curiosity, novelty seeking, broad-mindedness, interest in culture, ideas and aesthetics. Our society exhibits low levels of openness partly because of the influence of tradition.

But as our society modernises and urbanises, a new cultural sophistication is consolidating. For example, in the current debate on Bahati’s bill, the most virulent anti-gay crusaders are largely (although not entirely) from rural areas, born in peasant families, are less travelled and are not widely read. So they lack exposure to diversity. The opposite applies to most of the people who are tolerant of gays.

It is easy to tell open-minded people; they tend to seek complexity and novelty, they readily accept innovations and changes – and as Miller writes, they prefer grand new visions to mundane, predictable ruts. This sounds like a personality profile of Charles Onyango-Obbo. You cannot catch a person of his attitude and calibre in a homo-bashing rant.

People who are low on openness tend to seek simplicity and predictability; they resist change and respect tradition. They are often more conservative, close-minded, conventional and authoritarian. They follow the established cults as did their grand parents. Even in heterosexual relationships, they reject creative acts that increase intimacy. In the name of tradition, they support female genital mutilation, practice polygamy, beat their wives and want to decide for their children.

The Ugandan education system adds to the problem. At home, children are taught to obey their parents without question. In school, Students are taught to respect every opinion in a book or from the teacher instead of questioning it. That is why it is boring and frustrating reading opinions in our newspapers or listening to radio talk-shows. There is little attempt to add value to existing dogmas and beliefs.

Yet life is more complex than the “facts” that stare us in the face suggest. A person from mars visiting a small poverty stricken village in Karamoja would find people living close to the Stone Age – sleeping in grass thatched mud-huts, walking naked, cooking in medieval pots and eating from pre-historic wooden bowls. Visiting a high-tech firm in the Silicon Valley, he finds people building rockets that can navigate other planets millions of miles from the earth and yet keep sending pictures of what they observe.

It seems obvious to a casual observer from mars that the people in Karamoja are mentally inferior to those in the Silicon Valley; otherwise how do we explain such fundamental differences? Well the people in Karamoja will be black and the ones in the Silicon Valley will be white. Therefore, on the basis of this hard “evidence”, it is easy to conclude that blacks are inferior to whites in intelligence.

Actually, this “hard evidence” of white intellectual superiority was the basis of slavery, colonialism and other forms of racial injustice visited on the black race. Today, most people know that the factors that shape the economic and social destiny of peoples are varied and diverse; the colour of one’s skin has almost nothing to do with it. The difference in achievements between a worker in Google and a Karimojong cattle-herder may be rooted in the simple accident of history and geography, not their mental abilities.

As we debate Bahati’s bill, we will learn that the factors that shape human sexuality are complex and we should therefore not kill anyone because they are different. We should punish those who sexually molest children and those who rape – not because of their sexual orientation but because they violated some else’s rights while seeking sexual gratification. Happy New Year!

As reported on allAfrica.com: Uganda: Donors Blackmail On Gays Bad.

” A good read for those interested, i can see for’s and againsts for the bill and further discussion and education in Uganda about sexuality is required in order to quell the fears of those who are homophobic” Rebecca Fowler

Who was Bok Abudema?

Abudema hails from Alero-Lamogi in Amuru district. He worked as a sugarcane cutter in Jinja during the Obote II regime.

When President Yoweri Museveni seized power in 1986, he joined the UPDA, a rebel group composed of soldiers of the former Okello regime which fought to overthrow the new Government.

He joined the LRA in 1988 after Kony was attacked by Museveni’s NRA at Bwobo railways station in Alero Sub-county, Gulu District. He was one of the few remaining LRA fighters who had joined the rebel group voluntarily.

Abudema was involved in many massacres in northern Uganda. In 1998, he took part in the killing of 11 LRA fighters who were accused of practicing witchcraft in Jebelein, the LRA camp in Southern Sudan.

In December 1999, after the passing of the Amnesty Act by the Ugandan Parliament, he executed the then number two, Otti Lagony, in their camp in Sudan on Kony’s orders.

In 2002, Abudema commanded a raid in Agoro Sub-county in Kitgum district in which several civilians and UPDF soldiers died and at least 100 people were abducted. The trading centre was looted and the military barracks burnt down.

In April 2002, he took part in a massacre of about 800 civilians at Katire village in Southern Sudan.

In 2003, he was among the senior LRA commanders who crossed into the Teso region in eastern Uganda and carried out horrific massacres and massive abductions.

On October 2, 2007, he took part in the execution of Kony’s deputy, Vincent Otti, in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Abudema shouted the order ‘fire’ to the firing squad. Earlier, he had participated in arresting, torturing and humiliating Otti.

He was reportedly wounded during the December 14, 2008 air strikes on the LRA camps in eastern Congo under the joint offensive.

via Welcome To The Sunday Vision online: Uganda’s leading weekly.

Army in CAR to fight Kony
Sunday, 3rd January, 2010

E-mail article E-mail article Print article Print article
By Chris Ocowun

THE UPDF 4th Division commander, Brig. Charles Otema Awany, has camped at Obbo village in the Central African Republic to coordinate operations against the LRA remnants headed by Joseph Kony.

The regional army spokesman, Capt. Ronald Kakurungu, said Otema took over the command against the LRA rebels from Brig. Patrick Kankiriho.

“The hardcore LRA criminals are in the Central African Republic. The issue now is when to put the final nails on them since they are already defeated,” Kakurungu told journalists at his office on Monday.

He said the situation in the north was calm with more troops deployed in the DR Congo, the Central African Republic and at all the borders to pursue the LRA rebels and ensure that they do not return to Uganda.

“We have not lost focus in these operations and our mission is to ensure that the problem of LRA rebels does not spill over to the north again,” Kakurungu noted.

Kakurungu said the army had killed 305 rebels since it launched a joint military offensive, Operation Lightning Thunder, on December 14, 2008, under the command of Kankiriho.

He said the UPDF jointly attacked the LRA hideouts with the Sudanese People’s Liberation Army and the Congolese army in an operation backed by the air force, paratroopers and infantry.

The forces withdrew from Congo early last year when the time granted by the Congolese government for the operations elapsed. However, the army maintained intelligence units to help the SPLA and Congolese army clear LRA remnants, Kakurungu added.

He also explained that the army with the Police have been conducting a national de-mining programme in the north.

“There was a big concern by the IDPs about the mines in return areas. Most of these areas were battlefields and, not yet safe for settlement,”

Kakurungu stated that the UPDF and the Police recovered ammunition in the return areas in Gulu, Amuru, Pader and Kitgum.

Some of the weapons recovered included 23 land mines, 277 grenades and 154 rocket- propelled grenades.

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New Vision Online : Army in CAR to fight Kony.

Status of the Camp Phase-Out Process in Acholi, Lango and Teso Sub-regions






Region/District Camps officially recognized by the government Camps meeting Phase-out Criteria but yet to be assessed by DCPC Camps not meeting 50% Phase-out criteria Camps Assessed and recommended for Phase-out/ Decommissioning by DCPC Camps closed/ Decommissioned
Gulu 31 14 1 10 6
Amuru 34 12 8 14 0
Pader 31 13 0 18 0
Kitgum 25 7 0 18 0
Katakwi 44 2 0 0 42
Amuria 17 5 0 0 12
Lira 41 0 0 0 41
Oyam 20 0 0 0 20






TOTAL 243 53 9 60 121






Legend




Phase-out criteria At least 50% of camp population has returned



DCPC District Camp Phase-out Committee















UNHCR Uganda October 5, 2009









IDMC | Internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Uganda.

Since the signing of a Cessation of Hostilities Agreement between the government of Uganda and the Lord’s Resistance Army in 2006, about two thirds of the 1.8 million IDPs who lived in camps at the height of the crisis have returned to their areas of origin.

However, much work remains to be done to ensure that these returns are sustainable. Basic infrastructure and services in the return areas are inadequate or non-existent. Lack of access to clean water poses a risk of epidemics, and clinics and schools struggle with a lack of facilities and qualified personnel. While returnees have begun to grow their own food, the food security situation of many is still fragile, particularly as low rainfall since April 2009 means that harvests are predicted to be more than 60 per cent lower than normal.

Significant numbers of those who remain in the camps are there not out of choice but because they are unable to return to their home areas. Some IDPs cannot return because land disputes prevent them from accessing land, while IDPs with special needs and vulnerabilities are unable to support themselves in the return areas. Returnee communities need assistance to reintegrate these vulnerable IDPs.

The government and its international partners in northern Uganda have struggled to manage the transition from humanitarian emergency assistance to recovery and development. The government is in the process of reasserting its authority in the north, and is formally in charge of coordination and the provision of planning frameworks. However, a lack of capacity at the local level means that government authorities frequently struggle to discharge their operational responsibilities. (…)

via IDMC | Internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Uganda.

The Lord’s Resistance Army (also Lord’s Resistance Movement or Lakwena Part Two) is a sectarian Christian militant group based in northern Uganda.

The group was formed in 1987 and is engaged in an armed rebellion against the Ugandan government in what is now one of Africa‘s longest-running conflicts. It is led by Joseph Kony, who proclaims himself the “spokesperson” of God and a spirit medium, primarily of the Holy Spirit, which the Acholi believe can represent itself in many manifestations.[3] The group adheres to a syncretistic[4] blend of Christianity, Mysticism,[5] traditional religion,[6] and witchcraft,[7] and claims to be establishing a theocratic state based on the Ten Commandments and Acholi tradition.[3][8][9][10] The LRA is accused of widespread human rights violations, including murder, abduction, mutilation, sexual enslavement of women and children, and forcing children to participate in hostilities.[11] The LRA operates mainly in northern Uganda, but also in parts of Sudan and DR Congo.[12][13]

The LRA is currently proscribed as a terrorist organization by the United States.[14]

See more on : Lord’s Resistance Army – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

The Ugandan army says that it has killed a senior commander of the Lord’s Resistance Army militant group in the Central African Republic (CAR).

Bok Abudema was killed on Friday along with one of his fighters, while two women found with them were freed, an army spokesman told the BBC.

The army said LRA leader Joseph Kony was moving between the CAR and Sudan.

Ugandan forces have been operating outside the country’s borders for a year in a campaign to destroy the LRA.

They have been deployed in northern Democratic Republic Congo and southern Sudan as well as the CAR to track down the LRA, which once operated in northern Uganda.

BBC map

Army spokesman Lt Col Felix Kulayigye said that Mr Kony was moving between the CAR and Darfur in southern Sudan in order to escape Ugandan army patrols.

Bok Abudema is only one of a number of senior LRA commanders who have been cornered and killed, says the BBC’s Africa editor, Martin Plaut.

Others have surrendered but the LRA is scattered across a remote region of dense forests and swamps, savannah and deserts – ideal territory for guerrilla operations, our editor says.

Last month the UN human rights commissioner, Navi Pillay, demanded the capture of LRA leaders for crimes against humanity and gave details of the killings, torture and rape of hundreds of civilians by the rebels.

She accused the movement of killing at least 1,200 civilians between September 2008 and June 2009.

BBC News – Uganda reports killing LRA commander Abudema in CAR.

” Lets hope that 2010 is the year that Joseph Kony is bought to justice for all the innocent victims of this atrocious war. for him to be skipping back and forth between CAR and Sudan is an eerie thought, so ok some of his rebels have been caught, killed or defected, yet it only takes a handful of rebels to go back out and attack another village and abduct another lot of children for the atrocities to re-start again. Don’t close your eyes to this war…to do so could take a life” Rebecca Fowler

YouTube – “Northern Uganda: A History of Suffering” pt. 1.

Daily Monitor: Truth Everyday; Uganda News, Business, Travel, Sports, Elections  – ROAD TO 2011: Big battle for Gulu on the cards.

allAfrica.com: Uganda: Army Lists Gains Against LRA in 2009.

Over 513 abductees were rescued in the operation that was jointly conducted with the armies of Southern Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The army pointed out that several commanders were either killed or captured, while others defected to UPDF reception points in the war zone. Those killed include ‘Lt Col’ Okello Yapee and ‘Lt Col’ Okuti, while ‘Col’ Thomas Kwoyelo was captured, the statement said.

Among those who defected were ‘Lt Col’ Charles Arop, ‘Maj’ Joseph Okot Atiak, ‘Capt’ Obali, ‘Lieutenants’ Michael Ojok and Francis Opira, and Second Lieutenants Geoffrey Okwera, Onen Quinto and Christopher Ochora.

Under Operation Lightning Thunder, the UPDF and its allies attacked the LRA hideouts with helicopter gun-ships and Mig23 jet-fighters.

In fact LRA is re-grouping and gaining intensive training in Sudan. They are training in Dimo in southern Darfur. This fact is known to the intelligence community,” Maj. Gen. Kuol stated in the Sudan Tribune on December 23.

Last month, former LRA director of operations Charles Arop told The New Vision that LRA leader Joseph Kony had ordered his troops to move to Darfur and report to the first Sudanese army detachment to get protection and logistical support.

The Sudan Government through its Kampala embassy, however, denied it continues to assist the LRA.

–  Its good to see action has been taken. it is a hard one with respect to military action as child soldiers are the main fighters for the LRA, however i do understand there comes a point when its a war situation and hard decisions must be made. God bless the survivors and victims, the innocent children especially.  I hope that through Invisible children the USA will support the Disarmament of the LRA bill of 2009 check it out here *Rebecca-Anne

BBC News – Uganda fear over gay death-penalty plans. read the full report.

Its sad to see that we still…coming into 2010 have these discriminations