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Stop Hoodwinking Ugandans With Lies And Propaganda , Ugandans Will Foot The Bills For Dams And Roads – FDC’s Kaija To Museveni

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Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) deputy secretary Mr. Harod Kaija has asked the president  Yoweri Museveni and his publicists to stop telling Ugandans lies on how they have constructed the Entebbe Expressway, Karuma and Isimba dams and now the Source of The Nile bridge. In a letter that he shared with the grapevine, Kaija said that in future Ugandans would foot the heavy bills of these big sums of money that were invested in these projects against their will.

In his letter, Kaija says: Mr. Yoweri Museveni and his publicists are telling Ugandans how they have constructed the Entebbe Expressway, Karuma and Isimba dams and now the Source of The Nile bridge.

What they do not say is that all these projects are funded by loans, which will have to be paid back by Ugandans, not Mr. Museveni and his NRM party. If Ugandans used a “value for money audit” to evaluate the cost of these projects, they would pick sticks and flog the politicians.

Comparative economics requires that we compare our projects with similar projects in other countries. Karuma and Isimba dams are estimated to produce 780MW at a cost of $2.8 million per megawatt, making a total of $2.2bn.

Lesotho constructed a dam of 6,000MW at a cost of $800,000 per MW, totaling to $4.8bn. Ethiopia’s Grand Renaissance dam, the largest dam in Africa, produces 6,450MW costing $991,633 per MW, totaling $6.4bn.

ASSUMPTIONS

If Uganda used the ($800,000) unit cost of Lesotho to produce the 780MW, we would only pay $624m and save $1.57 billion (this is assumed to be eaten). We would even double our production to 1,560MW and still have a balance.

If we used the higher unit cost of Ethiopia ($991,633), the 780MW would cost Ugandans only $773.4 million and save $1.4 billion (assumed eaten). If Uganda was to construct the Lesotho dam of 6,000MW using the Ugandan cost, it would cost the taxpayers about $17 billion instead of the $4.8bn the Lesotho taxpayers parted with.

If Uganda was to produce Ethiopia’s 6,450MW using the Ugandan cost, taxpayers would pay about $18.2 billion instead of the $6.4bn the Ethiopians paid. Let’s look at how much is paid in the roads.

Entebbe Expressway is 53km with four lanes. About $9 million was spent per kilometer, which brought the total cost to $476 million. Kenya’s Thika Highway is 50km long, eight lanes costing about $7.2m per kilometer, with a total cost $360 million.

If we used the assumed balance, we got from using the Lesotho cost of constructing a dam ($1,576bn), we would have another four-lane highway of 174.9 kilometers. That is the road distance from Entebbe to Bugiri.

If we used the balance from the Ethiopia cost, $1.426bn, we would have another four-lane highway of 159km. That is the distance from Kampala to Kalisizo towards Mutukula. If we decided to use the Thika highway cost of eight lanes costing $7.2 million and factor in our Lesotho unit cost balance of $1.576bn, we would have a 220km eight-lane highway.

If we used the Ethiopia balance of $1.426bn, we would have a 200km eight-lane highway. These distances would cover Kampala – Gulu highway. If Kenyans were given the money spent on the 53km four-lane Entebbe Expressway of $476m, they would have constructed a 66.1km, eight-lane highway!

If they were to have a four-lane, they would have 120.2km instead of Uganda’s 53km! As Ugandans struggle with skyrocketing Yaka bills, Ethiopian domestic consumers will not pay for the power they use. The majority of Ugandans will not be able to drive on the “pay as you drive” Entebbe Expressway, while Kenyans will drive for free on the Thika highway in Kenya.

One wonders why the Shs 2.5bn Luweero-Rwenzori project is supervised at a cost of Shs 33bn. The other day, Mr Museveni opened the $125m four-lane Source of the Nile bridge ($100m loan from Japan). It is 525 metres long and 52.9m wide.

Shanghai’s Napu bridge costs $119m. It’s a six-lane highway, 8,346m long and 46m wide. Nigeria’s Lekki-Ikoyi link bridge in Lagos is a four-lane dual carriageway highway, 1,357 metres long, 8.0mx2 carriageway (width) bridge and 2.3mx 2 walkway, streetlights. It cost $79 million.

In all these countries, where the above bridges are constructed, there are reports of corruption. The difference here is how much is stolen vis-a-viz the quantity of work done.

Museveni’s told Ugandans that about 90 per cent and 67 per cent labour and supervisors respectively who worked on the project were Ugandan. Most raw materials were sourced locally. At least $25 million from Uganda’s government was to compensate those whose land the bridge was to occupy. Who owns land on River Nile?

He also talked about the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR), but this too is another expensive white elephant. Railway engineers inform us that it would be much cheaper to upgrade the existing rail tracks from British standard to German standard, replace bends with longer curves (to allow for higher train speeds) and upgrade rolling stock (locomotives). This would achieve the SGR objectives of carrying heavier cargo in a shorter time over the same distance at a much reduced cost.

What is unfortunate is that most of these projects are financed by poorly negotiated loans. Generations will hustle to pay back these loans yet most of the money is eaten by the “fat cats.”

 

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NATIONAL

I Don’t Enjoy Being Teargassed – Besigye Blasts Critics, Asks Mbabazi To Stop Hiding Behind Doors And Curtains, Tells Bobi To Learn From His Political Experience

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Opposition strongman Dr. Kizza Besigye has blasted former presidential candidate Patrick Amama Mbabazi on his last statement that he is politically selfish.

Veteran journalist Simon Kaggwa Njagala who had hosted Besigye on NBS TV’s famous morning breeze show tasked him to explain to the nation why he is selfish and why he thinks that without him no one can lead the opposition. Njala cited statements made by opposition leaders like Mbabazi and members of the DP block.

The four times presidential candidate asked Mbabazi to stop banding him as a selfish politician when he is hiding behind doors and curtains. He tasked him to come out and publicly tell Ugandans who are yearning for change that Besigye is politically selfish then Ugandans decide.

“I have no problem with anybody to lead the struggle and I have never fought for positions.  So, whoever wants to be a leader of the struggle should come and leads us. I don’t enjoy being teargassed and shot at with bullets, I am not really anxious to be in teargas. I have never seen    Bwanika in the heat of things, I have never stopped them,” Besigye said. 

The defiant man from Rukungiri revealed that he is not politically the same as Museveni as many people claim including people in the opposition.  He said that even though he is battling with treason charges, president Museveni must also be charged with treason charges because he has committed a lot of atrocities. He cited a situation when Museveni ordered military personnel in the broad day light to attack the Members of Parliament who did not support the lifting of age limit from the constitution.  The former political commissioner in the NRA government insisted that what Museveni did was a sign of dictatorship and even his predecessor, the late Milton Obote never did such when he was abolishing the constitution through the pigeon hole constitution and MPs were not beaten.

Besigye (L) with Bobi Wine (R)

Besigye also reacted to the bitter statements issued by people power leader and Kyadondo East Member of parliament Robert Kyagulanyi alias Bobi Wine that it’s not democratic for someone to stand four times for presidency and later claim that election cannot remove a dictator from power.  Besigye said that all the new opposition members should learn from them and clearly understand why veterans stand for presidency many times.

“The struggle today is not a struggle for leadership, we have nothing to lead, we have to first regain the country. The struggle is to end the rule of the few. This struggle is not my struggle but a struggle must help all Ugandans to regain freedom and control of their country,” Besiggye said.

He noted that the reason why he is challenging Museveni’s 2021 presidential bid is that Museveni uses his executive powers to frustrate other candidates. He gave an example of the last election where he was arrested in the middle of his campaigns. He advised other opposition members to understand the difference between winning an election and taking power. He cited the 2016 elections which he said he won but was denied victory and not allowed to even challenge Museveni’s claimed victory in courts of law because he was put under house arrest.

By Jamil Lutakome and Evalyne Musimenta

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CELEBRITY GOSSIP

Abtex And Bajjo Are Conmen, They Want Bobi Wine To Fall Into M7’s Trap – Tamale Mirundi: Some People Have Been Paid To Be Stupid – Abtex Fires Back

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L-R: Events organisers Abtex and Bajjo with Mirundi

President Museveni’s former Press Secretary Joseph Tamale Mirundi has warned Kyadondo East legislator Robert Kyagulanyi Sentamu alias Bobi Wine to be careful while dealing with people like events organisers Abtex and Bajjo claiming they are conmen.

While speaking to Sanyuka TV’s Uncut, Mirundi cautioned Bobi Wine to be careful because the two events managers especially Abtex will fail him. He added that the two are claiming that they are putting up Bobi concerts yet in actual sense they are trying to lure him into a trap by getting money from Museveni.

In his words, Tamale Mirundi said, “the one who stopped Bobi Wine from singing is the one who will allow him sing again so, now they have not allowed him to sing. Secondly, Bobi said he wants to be president, he is not a candidate now. The law allows a candidate to stage rallies but that will be in 2021 when the year is ending, they will give them three months. He is not a presidential candidate now. He is the Kyadondo east Member of Parliament meaning he is not allowed to stage rallies,” the presidential adviser on Media warned.

He continued, “thirdly, the government said Bobi Wine turns his concerts into political rallies, this man who puts on a hat (Abtex) has over failed Bobi Wine, I wish some people attack him because they are playing Bobi. If those men just come up and say that they are going to share the money they get from Museveni with Bobi wine, he will have fallen because he will have deceived his fans, people will think he is a thief.”

ABTEX FIRES BACK

When the Grapevine contacted Abtex, he told us that people like Mirundi have been paid by the state to be stupid.

“People saying such things have been paid to be stupid. Right now, Bobi Wine has put a lot of pressure on Museveni, He never expected a young man like Bobi to put him under a lot of pressure, he was used to the Maos and Besigyes. I cannot at the moment present myself as the person trying to fight Bobi Wine. When Bobi entered politics, he wanted to leave stage performances, I personally convinced him to keep performing on stage. Tony Sempijja, who is an NRM mole took some events organisers to President Museveni who gave them over 1.8 billion, now, me and Bajjo never went there. I personally fought enemy forces to make sure that Bobi performs at the Kabaka’s enkuuka fete. How can a man who did all that fight his own creation. Right now, they have hired bloggers and people like Mirundi to spoil our names. We were arrested and caged with Bobi Wine because we were fighting hard to make sure that his Busabala concert stands, how them can one say that we want his downfall?

We don’t want any compensation from president Museveni, we just want him to allow Bobi to sing and hold his concerts,” Abtex said.

He added that they have hired the Lord Mayor Erias Lukwago to handle their court case in which they have taken government to court for stopping Bobi’s shows.

Bajo told us to give him 10 minutes

By Doreen Menezer

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NEWS

You Succeeded In Removing Age Limit But You Will Not Cheat Death – Mao Stings President Museveni

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The Democratic Party president who also doubles as the chairman of the Inter Party Organization for Dialogue (IPOD), Nobert Mao has stung president Museveni over the amendment of article 102(b) of the constitution.

While addressing the press at the DP headquarters at City House in Kampala, the DP boss said, “according to article 126, Judicial power is derived from people and shall be exercised by the courts established under this constitution in the name of the people and in conformity with the law and the values, norms and aspirations of people.”

“The colonization of the Supreme Court reflects the colonization of Uganda and the division in the country which was evident in the supreme court. The supreme court has now put the last nail in the coffin of the 1995 constitution, one of the main problems we have here in Uganda now will be the peaceful transfer of power,” Mao said.

He said that him and the likes of Abed Bwaniika were young during Idi Amin’s regime and that they have never seen peaceful change of power.

Mao told president Museveni that he might have succeeded in lifting the age limit cap off the constitution but one thing he (Mao) is sure of is that he will not escape death.

“We grew up seeing wars following the disputed 1980 elections, then we witnessed 20 years of war in northern Uganda which drained Uganda’s economy, billions of dollars were spent on that war, services to other parts of Uganda couldn’t be given and Uganda paid the price as a whole,” he added.

“We had all our hopes on term limits which we thought would allow a peaceful transition but we lost that in 2005 and we remained hopeful that we had the age limit which also was recently removed. Naturally, we don’t want to take up arms but that doesn’t mean we can’t but all this is based on choice,” he said.

He further said that in the various meetings they have held, the talk about taking power through the use of arms usually ends with question marks.

“If we take power by force, why would we listen to anybody? There would be no reason, that’s why we want Ugandans to be part of the struggle so that we don’t black mail them. When people are involved, we will not start saying that we liberated them and asking questions like where were they during the liberation. Our struggle is about breaking the cycle of unconstitutional changes of government,” Mao said.

He said following the supreme court ruling, citizens now have no protection against a life presidency.

“We have not lost hope we are now going to appeal to the people’s court and Museveni this time won’t bride or intimidate us. We are encouraging the determined youth whom we meet in different societies who are ready to shape their own future. And that if we stand in their way, they will push us aside which I think is in their rights. Why does Museveni want to be a life time president? What does he fear?” Mao asked.

He added that he once heard president Museveni saying that after the age of 75, someone starts to diminish and becomes confused, why then does he want to sink with the country. Mao said that as DP, they are determined to put alternatives which Ugandans can trust who will take the country forward.

“We want to present an alternative team which Ugandans can trust. NRM is not a party but an eating house and all those who are there don’t believe in what is going on, they are all with us and we blame the opposition for not uniting and by appearing extremely disorganized.

Museveni’s power is based on gun power and ours is based on people power, let us see which is more powerful between gun power and people power. Guns were invented by the people and Ugandans should stop fearing them but believe in themselves, I urge leaders to unite,” he added.

By Evalyne Musiimenta

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