FDC reshuffles party leadership, Winnie Kizza dropped

By Patricia Osman
Opposition Forum for Democratic Change has reshuffled its leadership at Parliament, Betty Aol Ochan is now the Leader of Opposition replacing Winnie Kiiza.
Ssemujju Nganda has been maintained as the Chief Opposition Whip in Parliament and will be deputized by Hon Tonny Muhindo.
Buhweju county MP, Francis Mwijukye is now Commissioner of Parliament replacing Cecilia Ogwal of Dokolo.
Fungaroo Kaps Hassan is Committee Chairperson of Government Assurance while Nandala Mafabi chair Public Accounts Committee.
Hon Mubarak Munyagwa replaces Abdu Katuntu as the Chairperson of the Committee on Commissions, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises (COSASE  deputized by Hon Moses Kasibante among others.

Japan’s decades of assistance to Uganda changing rural lives

By Edwin Muhumuza

The Japanese Government is in preparations to mark 50 years of cooperation, support and Aid to Uganda. Among the activities leading up to the event, the embassy took Capital Radio and a group of journalists on a tour to western Uganda to showcase the diversity of Japanese assistance including technical cooperation, grant aid, volunteers,Japanese NGO’s projects and multilateral cooperation. The projects supported by Japan (Japan International Cooperation Agency-JICA)have not only been infrastructure but health ,education, climate change, water and sanitation and income generation.

One of them is the Kahinju Secondary School project for the construction of a girls dormitory in Kabarole district valued at USD 93,463. The Church owned school requested the Japanese Government to intervene following statistics that revealed that close to 30 girl students were dropping out of school per term a trend attributed to men who lure girls with money before having sex with them hence impregnating them,according to the Bishop of Rwenzori Diocese,Reuben Kisembo.

The school currently has a capacity of 1,250 students of which 557 are girls.Last year it emerged 7th in the whole district and was the best among Universal Secondary Education(USE) However the trend of pregnancies, walking long distances, lack of support from parents is  negatively  affecting academic performance according to substantive Deputy Headteacher Asiimwe Lillian Olimi, who erstwhile is optimistic that the new girls dormitory will change the trend.

In Kasese district, the Japanese government is supporting over 140 farmers  in another project  aiming to improve responses to disasters and climate change adaptation capacity for vulnerable people. In conjunction with Save The Children and Kasese Local Government, about 140 families do not have to depend on rain, which is unreliable but rather irrigation in Karusandara subcounty. Program manager disaster risk reduction, Save the Children, Vianne Musika, tells me that an empowered family directly impacts on the livelihood of children through modern farming methods.One,Sam a farmer and chairperson of the group says their livelihoods have changed as they are able to sell water melons, onions, tomatoes and other crops at high price at a time when they are off-season and scarce.

Representative of JICA Uganda Office, Mr.Yutaka Fukase explains that as part of the Grassroots Human Security Grant Project(GGP) Scheme to support community development to uplift life of people at grassroots level, so far a total of 235 projects worth 18,460,456 USD have been funded and 59 projects in western Uganda have so far been implemented.

The water supply project in Ryeru subcounty, in Rubirizi district is one such example. Residents in Mushumba parish have expressed gratitude as women and children no longer drown in the crater lake Kako. Thanks to the Japanese for the plant worth 260m shs,The 80,000 litres tank currently supports close to 20,000 people. John Mubangizi,the Project Director, Mushumba water project says residents pay 100shs  per jerrycan to maintain the diesel powered pump adding that up to 2013 they had six distribution points but as of today they boast of 30 distribution points.

In Mbarara district, Japanese technical experts from Rakunogakuen University are ensuring safe milk production by Rubyerwa Dairy Investments, Kashari county. A tour around the farm exposed us to modern scientific methods of dairy production including, bucket feeding, preparation of silage and breeding of best dairy cows; Jersy, Ushire and Friesians. Approximately 550 litres of milk are produced on average and the highest ever was 800litres.The Friesians are  the best producers, according to Nshangano Philomena, the Executive Director/Founder member, experts helped in preventing cows from contracting Mastitis, a disease that affects production of milk.

While speaking at a meeting of ministers,MPs and politicians from western Uganda, organized by Japanese Ambassador,His Excellence.Kazuaki Kameda, at Lake View Hotel Mbarara,Cabinet Minister for Karamoja Affairs, Johnson Byabagambi and former minister of works hailed Japan for being Uganda’s best development partner,whose loans are affordable,at an interest of below 0.5%.

Finally, we also visited BRAC, an NGO funded through Japan Social Development Fund at Lukaya. Kalungu district. Here, the project which has been running since 2014  and benefits 19,200 beneficiaries in four districts through agriculture and nutritional activities. The project Coordinator , Hannan Ali says they give carrots, tomatoes, groundnuts, sweet potatoes ,beans and pumpkins to families and thereafter a start-up kit for small holder farmers to grow the seedlings to ensure family nutrition.

These projects are just a few of the multi-million dollar support the Japanese government has rendered to Uganda since 1954.

 

 

NEMA, VIVO, NEXT media partner in kaveera ban

By Deo Wasswa

State minster for water and environment Dr. Kitutu Mary Gorreth has directed National Environment Management Authority and ministry of health to put sign posts on their entry gates that prohibits people from entering their premises with polythene bags.

According to her, this should be done to implement the kavera ban as well as sending signal to people manufacturing and importing Buveras to stop it and have alternative business that can replace Kavera.

Minister made the directive during the launch of national wide campaign that will see kavera completely out of use in Uganda.

The campaign spear headed by  Vivo energy, NEMA, Next Media , Ministry of health and other partners will be involved in  sensitizing and educating Ugandans to shun the use of Buveras to live healthier and  preserve environment.

On the other hand of the event held at shell Bugolobi, the NEMA police led by Byamukama Moses  stopped  a group of more than 60 people under their umbrella Uganda plastic manufacturers and recyclers association who also had organized a meeting opposite shell  to educate people on better managing  the disposal of Kavera after its use.

The group was led by Ategeka Moses, the communication director at Uganda plastic manufacturers and recyclers’ association.

US spent 506.1 M dollars on improving health in Uganda

By Gloria Nakimba
A total of 8.76 million Ugandans were tested for HIV/AIDS in 2017, according to new report to the Ugandan People released by the US Embassy in Kampala on Thursday.
US Ambassador to Uganda Deborah Malac says her government spent  506.1 million US dollars, about 1.8 trillion Uganda shillings in assistance to promote a healthy Uganda while the overall  assistance to the  Ugandan people  in the financial year 2017 totaled  to 971 Million US dollars  approximately  3.6 trilling shillings.
According to the report nearly 60% of Ugandans living with HIV achieved viral load suppression which has been shown to reduce onward transmission by 96%.
Ambassador Malac however noted that there are still challenges regarding resources for health workers asking government to invest more in the health sector to address this challenge.
This she says is a challenge not just in Uganda but in a number of countries where the resources are constrained, and health workers including nurses, midwives and physician are not paid enough to retain them to keep them as part of the system.
Center for Disease Control country director   Dr. Lisa Nelson noted that Uganda has registered great progress in HIV response getting towards the epidemic control as well as controlling malaria.
She explained that much of the support was towards the health sector to help the country deal with disease outbreaks “Uganda is in the Congo basin with a lot of emerging disease threats, and I think one of the things the US government and all agencies are involved in is also supporting Uganda to have the system to detect disease outbreaks and be prepared to respond so that they don’t spread and contain economic impact of those threats” Dr. Lisa Nelson told the media at the launch of the report at the American embassy in Nsambya. She hailed Uganda’s capability to diagnose infections as and when they break out.
“Some of your institutions such as Uganda virus research institute really are world class and are able to detect these disease and able to detect them in a timely fashion” she said.
Uganda is among 13 countries that were selected as one of the comprehensive countries to focus on epidemic control. Amy Cunningham Coordinator PEPFAR program told the media in Kampala that the country is two years away from epidemic control.
PEPFAR supported 993,070 of the 1,051,138 Ugandans receiving treatment for HIV last year. According to the report, more than 26 million Ugandans were kept safe from Malaria last year, thanks to the insecticide treated mosquito nets that were distributed under the US President’s Malaria initiative.
More than one million insecticide treated nets were distributed to families and 200,000 nets were handed out to pregnant women.
Malaria remains the leading cause of illness in the country resulting in 27 to 34 percent of outpatient hospital visits and 19 to 30 percent of hospital admissions country wide .On the issue of stability, the US government contributed 371.3 million dollars that is 1.3 trillion shillings to promote a stable Uganda.
According to Ambassador Malac  some this money went towards supporting the country’s response to an influx of refugees.
 1.3 million Refugees in Uganda received assistance through support from the Bureau of population refugees and migration at the US department of state
She hailed Uganda’s response towards refugees fleeing fighting back home especially those from South Sudan
“We continue to be very impressed with the government of Uganda and the Ugandan people’s willingness to accept refugees, it’s really a very extraordinary position” Ambassador Malac noted.

Kampala, Gulu population stands high risk of suffering heart disease

By Deo Wasswa
Kampala and Gulu district have been named as the most towns with a population which is  at risk of suffering from heart related diseases .
According to a report released by prudential insurance company indicates Mukono is one of the healthiest town in in terms of having a few people at risky of suffering from non communicable diseases followed by Entebbe town.
The report Further reveals that one out of the 4 adults in Uganda suffers from high blood pressure which is a major cause of heart related diseases,and 24.3% of the total population  in Uganda are suffering from hypertension.
The survey conducted by prudential Uganda measured the five risk of acquiring heart disease based on five  risk factors which includes, hypertension, consumption of alcohol, inactivity, poor diet and low awareness of heat disease
The findings have been announced to day  during the official launch of a three day prudential heart camp organised at railway grounds  in Kampala to extend free treatment to Ugandans with  non communicable diseases
in his remarks during the launch, the Director health services at the ministry of health Dr.Charles Olaro noted that 40% of all the death occurring in Uganda are due to non communicable diseases and 9% out of the 40% die of heart related diseases ,5% die of cancer .

Anti corruption coalition urges parliament to discuss audit reports

By Deo Wasswa

The anti corruption coalition Uganda has expressed concern over the delay by parliament to effectively discuss audits reports made by office of the auditor general warning that this promotes impunity and corrupt tendencies by government officials.

ACCU Executive director, Cissy Kagaba says from 2017 to date only 18 out of the 97 audit reports have been handled by the parliament.

Speaking during the validation of a report on selected implementation of value for money audit meeting at hotel Africana, Kagaba noted that the parliament should critically look at recommendations from the auditor general to avert worsening service delivery brought by some public official who steal public funds and walk away free.

Anthony Thompson named new World bank country manager

By Gloria Nakiyimba
The World Bank has announced Antony Thompson as the new Country Manager for Uganda Mr. Thompson replaced Ms. Christina Malmberg Calvo whose contract expired on 31 July, and he will be overseeing 26 projects in Uganda  totaling to 3 billion US dollars.
“Under his leadership, the World Bank will continue supporting inclusive growth and poverty reduction through a wide array of financial products and technical assistance” read part of the statement issued by the World Bank.
Some the World bank programs in Uganda are targeting to raise rural incomes by increasing agricultural productivity and commercialization and reducing vulnerability to shocks.
This is achieved through investing in better service delivery, particularly in health and education; improving the business environment and access to infrastructure services.
Mr. Thompson served as  the country manager for Bulgaria, the Czech Republic and Slovakia, since August 2014.
He joined the World Bank Group in 1992 as part of the Young Professional Program, working on human development for the Middle East and North Africa region’s country operations department.
He has worked in several different capacities, including operations officer, lead financial sector specialist, operations advisor, and sector manager. Throughout his career in the World Bank, he has worked extensively in financial sector, private sector development, and tax administration.
Thompson’s areas of expertise include health, HIV/AIDS prevention, and financial sector reforms.

Student shot dead as police contains school strike

By Robert Segawa

Police  in Buhweju has shot dead  and injured another  student as they tried to control a  student’s strike.

The incident happened at Nyakitojjo secondary school in Buhweju district where students were striking to demand education ministry to transfer their headteacher. The head teacher Alex Mabwindi had been accused of crumbling down the academic performance of the school.

Bonface Kinyera the district police commander Buhweju says the deceased Innocent Natuhangana a student of senior four was hit by a stray bullet during the last night strike at 9pm while the injured Felix while Musiimenta is admitted at Nyakitojo health center IV.

Beatrice Tusiime the District Education officer says it was a sad incident because they had just sat with students to end the impasse adding that it was unfortunate that students went on and became riotus.

Man murdered and dumped in Wakiso district

By Robert Segawa

Police in Matuga is investigating the circumstances under which 32 year old Enrolled nurse died and was dumped in Kagujje village Wakiso district.

According to Luke Owoyesigyire the Kampala metropolitan police spokesperson the deceased identified as Tumukunde Ivan.

It is alleged that on Wednesday the deceased was taken to Fellowship Medical Centre in Matuga in a company of his wife to receive a treatment and admitted because he was ill .

To the surprise of the loved ones he was found lying dead in Kaguja this morning something that sparked off fears in the community that he could have died from the clinic and the clinic wrapped the body in the old bed sheets before dumped in the bush.

This forced the angry residents  of the area to storm the clinic with intention of setting  it a blaze and the police intervene.

Police arrested two staff members of Fellowship medical center to help in the investigation these are Mugwanya Patrick a clinic officer, and Nampera Phiona a nurse who is at Matugga police.

One killed and another injured during a robbery in Nsangi

By Robert Segawa

Thugs raided Green harrow hard ware in Kitemu Nsangi municipality Wakiso district killed one local guard and removed one eye of second one before they took off with unspecified amount of cash.
The deceased has been identified as Phillip Olyekuri 28 year residents of Kitemu .

Police also identified the one lost his eye as Robert Masende as and him to rushed to hospital.

According to Ali Kakooza officer in charge Nsangi police station the thugs stormed the hardware during last night’s heavy downpour and beat up the guard’s injured one left other dead and after took off with cash.

Police visited the scene and the body has been rushed to Mulago hospital for postmortem.