Saturday, January 07, 2006

DP Issues score highly in voters minds

Sebaana Kizito campaign in Eastern Uganda ended on a high note with a mammoth rally in Mbale District. This momentum has swept into the Mid-west. DP's rally at Mityana was one of its biggest ever rivalling the Gulu rally.

Voters are tuning in to the little discussed issue of unemployment, under-employment and its connection to poverty. Uganda's economic story has been told in terms of statistical tables rather than improvements in quality of life. Along the trail, Sebaana has highlighted DP's commitment to focusing on increasing the level of employment in the economy; and reducing costs for doing business.

For Farmers: the Agricultural-Industrial Bank will be set up to help cooperatives organize farmers, through provision of credit, promote collective bargaining and distribution of farm inputs. Small scale businessmen will access credit to enter into food processing and value adding activities for urban markets in Uganda.

Foreign Investors: Sebaana has proposed parity, equal and fair treatment of both foreign and domestic investors. Investors will have to show they cannot find qualified manpower in Uganda before importing skilled and semi-skilled workers. Domestic investors will receive tax credits for hiring and maintaining 5 new workers on payroll for one year.

Ending the war: DP's manifesto has articulated carefully that ending the war will free up the Ministry of Defense's allocation to civil projects including reconstruction of the north, introducing employable skills in the armed forces, and directing some of its expenditure to the most economically ravaged areas. This is the DP peace dividend.

Promoting reconciliation: DP has committed to promoting genuine national reconciliation to secure the peace dividend. Uganda's confrontational politics has partly led to the institutionalization of patronage that buys expedience over competence and what is good for the country.

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