On October 16, 2009, Oxford’s Prof. Paul Collier gave a talk at Serena Hotel in Kampala on the prospects of an oil windfall in Uganda. Unlike in most of his work, this time Collier did not focus on how the international community (read the West) can help Uganda use its oil revenues well; his entire speech, though sounding like a primary school headmaster advising his pupils, was about what we Ugandans should and should not do with our oil revenues. It was vintage Collier ‘ frank, intelligent and insightful See story here.
Friday, October 23, 2009
In October 2001, the United States and its NATO allies invaded Afghanistan, overthrew the Taliban, sent Al Qaeda in disarray and established a largely pro-Western government. There was a lot of promise at the time that Afghanistan would become a peaceful, democratic and stable nation within a couple of years.
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
On March 16, 1989, the ultra modern subway system of South Korea’s capital Seoul came to a standstill. Six thousand workers went on strike; 3,000 of them defiantly occupied the roundhouse from which the locomotives dispatch. The president, Gen. Roh Tae Woo, ordered a crackdown: 6,000 policemen in full riot-gear surrounded the roundhouse arresting 2,300 of the striking workers. Within days, the strike was crushed and the subway resumed its impressive efficiency.
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
For a long time now, Ugandans and foreigners have praised the government of President Yoweri Museveni for being ‘tolerant’ of press freedom. I have been inconsistent on this issue. Sometimes I believe we enjoy a relatively good level of media freedom and freedom of expression generally yet at times I feel the creeping hand of fascism. Part of this confusion results from the personalised way in which our country is run ‘ nothing of significance happens without the president’s personal involvement.