On December 17th last year, the first issue of The Independent hit the streets. I remember vividly one of our colleagues, Asuman Bisika coming with his eyes beaming into our small office along Kanjokya Street with the first copy of the magazine. It looked wonderful and the mood was ecstatic. Later that day, friends sent me text messages: â€œBetter than Newsweek,â€ one of them read; â€œBetter than Timeâ€, another announced. This was encouragement, not a statement of assessed fact.
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Finally it has happened; National Social Security Fund (NSSF) managing director David Jamwa and his deputy Prof. Mondo Kagonyera have been fired. The use of the word suspension is meant to keep them on Katebe till their contracts expire. And the reason for this is not the irregularities during the investment in (or procurement of) Amama Mbabazis Temangalo. That will be one of the official excuses. The actual reason is to pave way for the political takeover of NSSF by State House.
Friday, December 12, 2008
Laetitia Bader from Human Rights Watch accuses me of justifying restrictions imposed on independent media in Rwanda by the RPF government. I do not know how she came to this conclusion. But I have a fundamental philosophical difference with her. I believe that freedom is not a gift to the governed from their rulers. It is, as Kwame Nkrumah wrote in Africa Must Unite, the precious reward, the shining trophy of struggle and sacrifice. Freedom of the press in Rwanda will not come from the magnanimity of the government but from the struggle and sacrifice by its journalists.
Thursday, December 4, 2008
Last week, I argued that President Yoweri Museveni has actively stifled the growth of a robust private enterprise sector generally though he has promoted the growth of individual businesses. He has pitted indigenous capital against non indigenous capital by giving preferential treatment to the latter and thereby generating hostility against them from the former. He achieves this because our business class has not yet developed a consciousness of its collective interests and the organisational means to pursue these interests politically. The Uganda Chamber of Commerce and Uganda Manufacturers Association are still young and weak.