National Resistance Movement (NRM) presidential candidate, Yoweri Kaguta Museven, on Monday campaigned in Rukungiri, the home district of his former physician and longtime rival, Dr. Kizza Besigye, and Lt.Gen. Henry Tumukunde, one of the 11 contenders in the 2021 presidential elections.
The district remains a stronghold of the opposition Forum for Democratic Change (FDC). Three of the four MPs representing the district subscribe to the FDC while Besigye in the 2016 elections defeated Museveni with 58,883 votes against 56,425 votes.
Addressing NRM leaders from Rukungiri and Kanungu districts at Rukungiri stadium, Museveni expressed unwillingness to hand over power to his National Resistance Army (NRA) bush war comrades because “they are useless.”
Museveni specifically mentioned his former physician, Dr. Besigye, former army commander also the Alliance for National Transformation (ANT) presidential flag bearer Gen. Mugisha Muntu and former minister Lt Gen. Henry Tumukunde who is in the race as an independent candidate.
The trio fought alongside Museveni in the 1981-1986 guerilla war but have since accused him of clinging to power and being a dictator. However, Museveni argued that he is always angry against Besigye, Tumukunde and Muntu who also call for his step down from power yet they have also done nothing.
Museveni wonders why they only shout at him to go yet they are aware that he has where to go.
He said that the trio’s only aim at angering him so that he violates laws adding that his being in politics is not aimed at achieving his personal interests like the trio allege.
Because they have not done anything useful, Museveni said, he cannot hand-over power to any of them because he realized that he has to push them like a wheelbarrow for them to become useful.
He said that he would hang on until he gets a proper and useful replacement to push Uganda forward.
Museveni urged the NRM leaders to focus on the achievements registered in the Kigezi sub-region as they mobilise the locals to vote for ruling party. Among the achievements in the sub-region that the NRM prides in are;
Rukungiri district has relatively good roads many of which are tarmacked. The government is also continuing its efforts to improve road infrastructure in the district. Upgrading of the 78.5km Rukungiri- Kihihi-Ishasha/Kanungu road.
The project is funded by the Government of Uganda and Africa Development Bank (ADB) to a tune of Shs 207.8 billion. Road works commenced on November 5, 2018 and expected to be completed on November 4, 2021.
Works on 6.10 Km of town roads in Rukungiri and Kanungu districts will be undertaken in addition to the main project. They are currently under design.
The other ongoing road projects include Rwabuteera-Kanyanshande Spur, Katojo-Kihihi, Kanungu-Kihihi-Ishashanje and Kanyantorogo.
Rukungiri has a total of 173 government-aided primary schools distributed in at least 79 out of 80 parishes in the district; all these schools offer Universal Primary Education (UPE) programme.
Rukungiri has a total of 55,379 pupils enrolled under the UPE programme. However, the NRM policy in the next five years will be focusing on construction of primary schools in parishes without a government primary school.
In secondary education, the district has a total of 24 government secondary schools with an enrollment of 13,737 students. The NRM policy is to have a government secondary school in every sub-county and the government will construct a new school in Kebisoni sub-county and expandNyakishenyi High school in Nyakishenyi Sub-county.
With the education liberalization policy of the NRM government, many private schools have been established in Rukungiri.
Currently the district has 143 private primary schools and 28 private secondary schools with an enrollment of 25,271 and 6,742 students respectively.
The district has the following technical institutes; Rukungiri Technical Institute, Uganda Martyrs Technical Institute and Rukungiri PTC. These technical institutes equip students with the required skills for the job market to reduce joblessness.
Rukungiri district has a total of 65 health centre IIs, 16 health centre IIIs, five health centre IVs and two hospitals and all the above health units are fully functional. Kitimba health centre II in Western division was upgraded to health centre III.
The Construction of Health Centre IIIs is at completion stage in the two sub counties of Kebisoni and Buyanja.
The NRM government is prioritizing the strategy of providing at least one safe water source per village. Currently, 79% villages have access to clean safe water in Rukungiri district.
The completed projects are the rehabilitation of Nyakabingo Gravity Flow Scheme in Rukungiri district. This has served a total of 3,600 new persons. Constructed and extended Nyakagyeme Water Supply Scheme is serving 11,689 people in 14 Villages. Extended Kiyenje Water Supply scheme serves 9,316people in six villages.
Drilling of Point Water Sources (Production Wells and Hand pumped boreholes) in villages without a safe water source across the district is ongoing. Also a total of 3 hand pumped bore holes were drilled.
Out of the 16 sub-counties in Rukungiri, 15 are connected to the national grid and works are ongoing to extend power to Bwambara sub-county which is not yet connected.
Poverty alleviation and job creation
The government is going to continue investing in strategic sectors, either directly or by co-investing with the private sector. Over Shs1.8 billion will be provided over the next five years to set up industries in all regions of the country. This is expected to generate employment as follows: 82,300 (direct), 80,300 (indirect) and over 23,000 induced jobs.
So far, under the Youth Livelihood Programme, Shs.160 billion has been given out to various youth groups. In Rukungiri, a total of 151 youth projects have been funded with at least Shs 1.3 billion benefiting a total 1,725 youths of which 953 are males and 772 are female.
Shs106 billion has also been given out to women groups in the last four years, in the whole country. Rukungiri itself has 123 women projects in both rural and Rukungiri Municipality. Over 900 million have been given out to these women groups benefiting over 2,000 women in the district.
Youth IndustrialHubs are being set up by the State House in every sub region. These will train the youth in various skills like carpentry, welding, mechanics, shoe making, tailoring, knitting, weaving etc.
Under Emyooga fund, 18 different activities are already being organised in every parish. Each myooga group will get Shs 30 million at constituency level while the one of the elected leaders will get Shs 50 million.