President Yoweri Museveni said the ruling NRM government makes decisions based on their importance in steering the country forward, not to please those who support the party.
"We never entertain cheap popularity; failing to tell the people the truth because you want to be popular with them, even when it will lead to their ruin," the president said in a recent national address which focused on crime, Covid vaccination, and terrorism.
Read the full address below:
Countrymen and Countrywomen,
Greetings. Tonight, I have come here to talk to you about vaccination, crime and terrorism.
All these are important to understand because they affect stability and wealth creation, hence, prosperity of our people.
In the past, I have talked to you about unity (anti-sectarianism), wealth creation in order to create prosperity and jobs-creation. Today, I will only talk about vaccination, crime prevention and counter-terrorism because they are now the immediate problems.
Vaccination will help us to protect ourselves against Corona and be able to open our economy in January 2022.
Full Vaccination ─ two dozes of many of the vaccines and one doze of Johnson and Johnson ─ according to the scientists ─ give protection of 66.3% They are, therefore, better than nothing.
This is in spite of some information which shows that even the fully vaccinated may still contract the disease; however , those infections, they say, do not progress to severe disease or death.
Nevertheless, full vaccination has the following benefits:
i. Those infected will not progress to severe disease;
ii. Will not die unless they have other co-morbidities;
iii. Since many people will be vaccinated, the speed of the spread of the virus will be slowed down;
iv. And the hospital space that has been tied down by the corona patients, will be freed for other medical cases.
On account of that, the Government has been working very hard to get enough vaccines. As of today, we have received 15,541,890 doses of different vaccines.
In addition, by the end of December 2021, we shall have got the following additional vaccines: AstraZeneca (1,257,700 doses), Sinopharm (1,713,600 doses), Sinovac (600,000 doses), Johnson and Johnson (9,950,400 doses), and Pfizer (2,919,150 doses), totaling to 31,982,740 doses.
These vaccines are enough to vaccinate fully all the 21million Ugandans above the age of 18years. If there is need for a third booster doze, then it is also available.
The other day, I was talking to our good friends from United Arab Emirates - UAE. They are ready to sell us 40 million dozes. With booster dozes, we would need only 21 million. Meanwhile, our scientists are studying two questions.
Question number one is: “Is the booster doze necessary?”
The second question is: “Can we mix the vaccines? Would somebody that got the 2 dozes of AstraZeneca, like myself, be helped by taking Sino-pharm as the booster doze?”.
The vaccines are getting more available globally. Moreover, we are working hard on our own vaccine, which we shall call Nalubale Dawa (ND).
Apart from the vaccines, our scientists like Ogwang, Nambatya and others, have been working on anti-virals. The Nambatya ─ Katenta ─ Apuuli effort, is now at the stage of clinical trials; that of Ogwang, has compiled a list of 300 persons whom they affirm, were healed by Covidex.
The Nambatya group are now doing a hospital-based clinical trial, whose results shall be communicated to the public once it is completed.
In the meantime, on account of the stringent measures we took right from March,18th, 2020, when the Corona-19 knocked on the door of Uganda, we have had only two waves-while other countries have had 3 and some are entering the fourth.
The total number of Ugandans infected is 127,166, those that have recovered are 97,217 and those that have died are 3,247. We praise the Lord for these much smaller numbers compared to what happened in some of the other Countries.
The global number of the dead stands today at 5,158,599 and that of the infected stands at 257,100,256. Today, the Corona situation in Uganda is as follows:
i. Those in hospital are 140, occupying only 140beds, while the total bed capacity is 3793.
ii. Those dying per day are 2, as compared to the ones that were dying in the past months per day who hit the figure of 54 on the 10th of June, 2021.
iii. And when you test 100,000 people, only 10 are found positive with Corona, compared to 1,735 at the height of the second wave, on the 10th of June, 2021.
Therefore, Ugandans, our firm stand, has not been in vain. Remember, that the history of the NRM is the history of freedom-fighters who always speak the truth and deal with reality realistically.
We never entertain cheap popularity- failing to tell the people the truth because you want to be popular with them, even when it will lead to their ruin.
Fortunately and with God’s guidance and approbation, we always succeed and emerge from those difficult situations, triumphant.
Now that we have enough vaccines, therefore, the task is to make all adults, above the age of 18years to come out and be vaccinated. In the past, because the vaccines were not enough, we were targeting vaccinating the 4.8 million.
These were the following:
i. Those above the age of 50 years who are 3,348,500.
ii. Those below 50years but with the co-morbidities of diabetes, etc., who are estimated to be- 500,000.
iii. The teachers- 550,000.
iv. The health workers – 150,000.
v. And the security personnel – 250,000.
These would be the 4.8 million who were our first target. Recently, I advised the Ministry of Health, to add on the following:
i. The bar and hotel workers;
ii. The market workers;
iii. The taxi and bus drivers and conductors; and
iv. The boda boda operators.
All these efforts of prioritizing categories to be vaccinated were on account of not having enough vaccines.
Now that we have enough vaccines, the message is different. It is: all those above the age of 18 years, come forward and be vaccinated.
All the Health Centre 3s, will be having the Vaccines. I command the RDCs and the District Medical Officers in each district, to use the Local radios to guide the vaccination efforts in the respective catchment areas of each Health Centre III i.e in each Sub-county.
The team of RDC and the District Medical Officer, is the one to guide on which dates the people of Semuto Sub-county, for example, should go out to be vaccinated because they are sure the vaccines will be there. They should be assisted by the CAOs and Gombolola Chiefs to send out these messages by media and also by couriers on bicycles, Piki pikis etc., to the villages.
It is not necessary for the vaccination teams to go to the villages because that increases the costs of the exercise. The teams should only go to the villages for the few very old people that cannot move at all, identified by LC1s.
We need to save money because we may have to vaccinate the children also. Hence, such money should not be squandered on uncooperative people that do not bother to do the minimum that is necessary to save their lives and get the whole Country out of trouble.
Therefore, now, I direct the RDCs, the District Medical Officers, the CAO and the Gombolola Chiefs, through the Radios and courriers, to ensure that all people of 18years and above, go to the Health Centre 3s and be vaccinated when the vaccines are available.
The schools and the whole economy will be open in January, 2022, whether some people are vaccinated or not.
I would also like to use this occasion, to talk, again, to the Ugandans about the battle against crime and terrorism. I had last talked about this on the 28th of October, 2021.
This is 4weeks ago. Both crime and terrorism, are motivated by parasitism-people who want power and wealth without democracy or working with your own hands.
Right from 1965, the precursors of the NRM, the student study groups, were, mainly, from the background of wealth creators- mainly crop producers and livestock-rearers. Later on, we worked with fishermen and the artisans of Katwe.
Although, at that time, we had not clearly refined our ideology and strategy, from the history examples of the Europeans Countries such as France, which though united for a long time, had the weakness of having internal fiefdoms (Brettany, Burgundy, etc.), that imposed inter-province taxes, thus undermining the free-flow of goods within France and also of peoples such as the Germans and the Italians who, although one people, were fragmented into small Kingdoms (Germans into 39 and Italy into 7), we came to know that fragmentation was weakness, while unity was strength.
That is how Countries like Spain, Portugal, England and Russia, had become more powerful than the German and the Italian peoples.
We, therefore, started despising and even, effectively, walked out of the existing sectarian political parties of DP, UPC and KY.
There was also the good example of the 13 American, former British colonies, that had, in 1776, united under George Washington to form the nucleus of the, by now, powerful the United States.
In those history studies, we noticed the role of the new social class in the Western countries (Europe and the USA), known as the Middle class or the bourgeoisie, who, unlike the feudalists, understood and valued the importance of integration (unity), because bigger markets were better for their growing businesses.
This need for bigger markets by the respective business interests, played decisive roles in the French Revolution of 1789 (the bourgeoisies) and the unification of Germany in 1870-71(the Prussian Junkers).
By the time of Idi Amin in 1971, our student Movement had crystalized our four principles of: Patriotism, Pan-Africanism, Social-economic transformation and Democracy and had become ardent supporters of Mwalimu Nyerere because he was the principal champion of these principles. Why patriotism (no sectarianism), Pan-Africanism and Social-economic transformation?
It is on account of the prosperity of the African Populations (Patriotism and Pan-Africanism), by uniting the markets for wealth creators, strategic security (East African Federation) by having stronger Armies and handling security and sovereignty problems together (unlike now when ADF is using Eastern Congo with impunity) and achieving all this by taking advantage of the oneness of the African Peoples (the Bantu, the Cushitic, the Nilotic, the Afro-Asiatic etc.).
We should create several powerful states (Indias or Chinas) in Africa to facilitate this attainment of that prosperity, strategic security and undugu (fraternity) of the African people.
We should not build a Latin America in Africa (a Centre of weakness) but several “USAs” or “Chinas” or Indias”, in Africa. Why democracy? It is because the African people, should always freely decide their destiny.
On account of these beliefs, we were able to build a strong Army, with the massive support of the masses, which enabled us to achieve victory in 1986 and, thereafter, to bring unity and peace in Uganda.
That is how the economy has been able to recover and expand from US$1.5bn to now US$.41bn. The shortages of 1986, the magendo, the kibaanda, the kusamula, etc., have been replaced with surpluses (ekyengela-Omweeru), of everything ─ sugar, bananas, maize, milk, industrial products, etc., etc.; the Country is connected by tarmac roads from corner to corner and electricity is about to reach all the Sub-Counties. We had 28,000 telephones in 1986; we now have 28 million (July 2021).
While we only had 2.5million children in the school system, we now have 15million. The population of Uganda was only 14million in 1986. It is now 43 million.
In spite of all these positive achievements, many of them appear right from 1986 or even from the bush days (e.g discipline of the Army), some parasitic groups, feared this success. These successes, would render their groups irrelevant. Initially, they were working also with some foreigners.
Hence, they launched wars: Lakwena, Kony, ADF, UPA, FOBA, Itoongwa, Kirimuttu etc. Between 1986 and 2007, these groups organized rural insurgency which involved hiding in forests or mountains, ambushing roads, kidnapping people to be sex slaves or fight for them, launching surprise attacks against the Army, planting land mines given to them by the Government of Sudan etc.
By 2007, the Army had developed a multi-dimensional capacity that could not permit such groups to operate anywhere in the rural areas of Uganda or even in the neighboring Countries if the Governments of these Countries allow us to operate there (e.g., South Sudan, Galamba National Park in Congo etc.).
This multi-dimensional capacity, included: LDUs guarding villages against those that attack soft targets (Wanainchi etc.); zonal forces that always stay in an area (sub-county, County etc.) without ever leaving that area until the insurgency is defeated; mobile forces to hunt for the terrorists in the forests; Air-forces; communication intelligence to know what the enemy is saying or doing and where he is located; and road protection against road mines.
The insurgents had and have no chance. Hence, peace in rural areas since 2007 in all parts of Uganda.
One of the groups, ADF, having been defeated in the rural areas (in the Rwenzori Mountains - very tough terrain), now resorted to urban terrorism.
Between January and July 2001, the ADF exploded a total of 30 explosives, killing a total of 147 people.
Although we were not well equipped in the towns, mainly using human intelligence, we defeated this urban terrorism campaign. There was some quiet.
However, in 2012, the ADF started assassinating individuals. They assassinated 08 Sheiks by the names of:
1. Sheik Abdul Karim Ssentamu;
2. Sheik Abubakar Muhamad Kiweewa;
3. Sheik Ibrahim Kirya;
4. Sheik Mustafa Bahiga;
5. Sheik Abubakar Madangu Yunus;
6. Sheik Rashid Wafula;
7. Sheik Ductoor Muwaya; and
8. Abdul Ssentuga
They also assassinated Joan Kagezi, Maj. Kiggundu and some other people, assassinated Kawesi, Kirumira, etc. There were also other criminal acts like the killing of women in Entebbe, Zaana, Nansana and the killings by the Kiddawalime group in Nabissojjo.
Using human intelligence, we arrested some and others – e.g. Kiddawalime – were killed. However, the investigations were inconclusive and slow.
That is when I made the speech in Parliament on the 18th of June 2018, where I outlined the 12 measures to be undertaken. Those measures, have been partially implemented.
The ADF controllers being bankrupt, however, did not understand the importance of those measures nor did they evaluate the cause of their defeat in their rural insurgency in the Rwenzori Mountains.
The UPDF that defeated them in 2007 is now much stronger, actually many times stronger, than it was. Their attempts to kill General Katumba on the 1st of June, 2021, landed them in the trap.
We were able, using the modern technology, to identify some of them. Once you get some, it is a matter of time before you get all of them.
Since the Katumba attack, the following ADF operators have been killed:
1. Nsubuga Mohamad;
2. Moses Kalyowa Mohamed alias Mozey;
3. Matovu Adam alias Manihaj;
4. Lubwama Hussein alias Master;
5. Juma Said;
6. Amin Kawaawa Ramathan Mustafa;
7. Sserwadda Juma;
8. Muhamad Kirevu alias Abas Kirevu;
9. Atindya Yasin alias Ssenabulya Dan;
10. Byaruhanga Musa Bahemuka;
11. Turikimanya Joshua Mathias; and
12. Bagonza Joseph
A total of 106, have been arrested. I have heard some arguments about Sheikh Kirevu Muhamad, how he was a nice person etc.!
I normally monitor closely, these operations.
There is no way, the security operatives would have known about Kirevu Muhamad if he was not connected with the Katumba group (trying to assassinate him), with the Pader group during the burial of Gen. Lokech, with the bombers of Komamboga, the bus and the 2 recent bombs.
The bomb of CPS and that of IGG office was linked to the 3rd one that was supposed to be exploded by Mozzey Musa Mudassir Mugamba at Bwaise on the same day.
The bomber at CPS was Mansur and one of the IGG offices was Wanjusi. Let the public be patient and wait for the Court. You will hear the truth. We now know a lot about these terrorists.
Of course, some are not yet arrested such as Ubaida bin Bukenya, the Ngabi clan member, that has now become an Arab on account of his ideological sickness.
How can Museveni of the Basiita clan become a Jew or an Anglo-Saxon, because he is a Christian? Shear sickness!! My advice to all of them – these still hiding here, in Kenya, Tanzania, Mozambique, or in Congo and South Africa, to surrender and save themselves.
Of course, they will be prosecuted but, if they do not come out, they will all die.
In the meantime, the public should be vigilant. Until all of them are arrested, they will continue to pose a short-term danger if we are not vigilant. However, our infrastructure is already helping.
The investigators get a lot of information from that video. Those cameras can now see the wrong–doers. The scientists are telling me that we can add a capacity to those cameras that will enable them to smell anybody carrying explosives and make alarm so that we go for him!
You remember, that we are also going to digitally equip all vehicles and all piki pikis with a device, that somebody cannot remove so that it will be able to tell us which vehicle was here or there.
With the eyes, the nose and ears of the State, it will be impossible for the terrorists to operate in the towns of Uganda, just like they are now unable to operate in the rural areas of Uganda.
In the meantime, use what is on the ground to be more vigilant. Apart from the cameras of the country, the government establishments, should have their own in-house cameras to monitor suspicious movements around and act against them before doing damage.
The Police is already guiding people on how to expose those criminals. The issue, however, is to use intelligence to uproot these elements out of our society and we now have the capacity to do so, both within the country and, with neigbours, also outside the country.
Coming to the issue of suicide bombers, it reminds me of the tribal chauvinism in Europe where the English used to talk of “Dutch courage” which meant artificial courage on account of alcohol.
The NRA-UPDF has been fighting almost continuously for the last 50years. We despise that type of courage inducement. We regard it as manipulation.
We believe in and we use conscious courage, where we know the risks of fighting but accept them but also educate ourselves about the counter–measures against the risks.
Those who use religion (going to Jana), alcohol, drugs (marijuana), witchcraft (Lakwena), are, essentially, cowards trying to create bravery artificially through manipulation.
We have fought and defeated them in Somalia, Sudan, etc. The Israel Army fought and defeated such groups in the Middle East. The American Army and the Red Army defeated the Japanese Kamikize (suicide air-craft pilots).
It is cowardice, desperation and actually criminal. At the right time, we shall expose the criminality of the actors that send these children to die for no good purpose.
Going to Jana is controlled by God. Does God admit wrongdoers? How can killing innocent people, give you a ticket to heaven?
If suicide – bombing enables people going to heaven, why do the leaders of these groups the Warlords, not take the lead by example? They do not want to go to heaven?
The ADF has exposed itself to us when we are readier. They are sure to be defeated. The explosives they are using are, partly improvised, such as the use of ammonium nitrate (NH₄NO₃), calcium nitrate Ca(NO3)2, etc., ordinary fertilizer.
However, there is what appears to be C-4 which can only come from Army stores and the detonators and the detonation cords which can only come from mining companies or from Governments.
We shall investigate all this and go for the collaborators of ADF. Ugandans, concentrate on Wealth Creation. The ADF is properly in our gun - sights at a time we have built great capacity. The work will be done.
I thank all of you.