Covid-19 Strips Naked Gen. Museveni’s Regime as Neglected Hospitals Are Overwhelmed

Gen. Museveni
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Dictator Gen. Yoweri Museveni. An expert in massacres but not in protecting Ugandans from Covid-19. 

The sycophants that use to sing praises about the alleged achievements of Gen. Yoweri Museveni’s ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM) party are now crying real tears as Covid-19 smites them down. They use to sing praises about the Ugandan dictators “excellent” hospitals even though they were not stocked with medicine, people slept on floors, and women died in record numbers while delivering. 

They have no moral authority to complain about exorbitant fees charged in private hospitals for Covid-treatment, ranging from $2,000 per day, after first paying a one-time “admission” fee of $4,000. This, in a country where per capita income is under $800 according to the World Bank. 

Let these sycophants of the kleptocratic gerontocracy go and get sick in the fictitious “well-equipped” government hospitals they used to talk about. This has always been the idle talk of regime officials while promoting Gen. Yoweri Museveni on televisions, radios, newspapers--during electioneering. These hospitals are simply not there and Covid-19 has exposed the regime naked for all to see the corruption.

Doesn’t it amaze you, dear reader, to see the same desperate sycophants that have been heaping all the nicest forms of encomiums onto Gen. Museveni, the NRM deity, who now flock to private hospitals and stay away from the ones they want the masses to go to? 

They have supported and blindly defended the Museveni regime’s maladministration, incompetence, and corruption. They claimed the government hospitals had been modernized and were state of the sciences. None of them go to these death-trap centers.

Hundreds of members of Parliament have tested positive for coronavirus. Yet, they are not going to the government hospitals in their constituencies to seek treatment. They may be liars but they are not fools, so they go to private hospitals even as they complain of price gouging. 

Politicizing health, underfunding, corruption, poor planning, over-spending on the military and police to maintain the dictatorship all pose grave danger to the existence of Ugandans. The elite can afford to avoid death by flying overseas for treatment. They leave the public hospitals for Uganda’s wretched of the world.

I remember in the year 2001, when African leaders including dictator Museveni signed the Abuja Declaration, voluntarily pledging to allocate a minimum of 15% of the national budget to health. Now 20 years later, only three countries among the signatories have attained the pledge, with Botswana allocating 17%, Rwanda 20%, and Zambia 16%. Uganda allocates a paltry 8%. The World Health Organization (WHO) recommended per capita healthcare spending is $40, while Uganda spends $10.

The neglect of the healthcare sector and corruption left Uganda unprepared for the current coronavirus new wave. 

Elsewhere, governments have the primary responsibility to be at the forefront of preventive and palliative measures. Here in Museveni’s Uganda the only preventive measure the government knows is locking poor people in their houses to starve to death since there are no social welfare services, or unleashing the brutal soldiers to attack people who venture outside in search of food, or encumbering citizens with hundreds of millions of dollars in foreign loans such as the $1 billion just approved by the IMF.

Uganda does not have a responsible government—we have a group of greedy thieves in charge, starting with Gen. Museveni at the top.

The columnist can be reached via KakwenzaRukirabashaija@gmail.com 


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