President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni on Tuesday November 7, 2023, met and held discussions with a section of Amuru District Local Government leaders at State House Entebbe. The President and the leaders who included the District LC5 Chairperson, Mr. Michael Lakony and the District Councilors discussed development issues and other matters affecting the area. During the meeting, President Museveni advised the leaders to put emphasis on ensuring that the people they lead embrace income-generating activities in order to fight poverty and improve their livelihoods. “What is lacking is homestead income, that is where you should put emphasis,” he noted.
President Museveni told the leaders that the homestead incomes can mainly be achieved through commercial agriculture. “What I have been telling you, the four-acre model will enable all homes of Ugandans to have incomes,” he said. The President further asserted that the people of Amuru should utilise the Parish Development Model (PDM) to support their four-acre model farms.
He said, with PDM money, the farmers will be able to set up a four acre model farm with one acre of coffee, on the second acre they grow fruits such as oranges or mangoes, then in the third acre they put pasture for cows, on the fourth acre they grow food crops, in the backyard they do poultry, piggery and fish farming for those who are near the swamps. On the other hand, President Museveni cautioned the leaders against bad politics.
“There was war for 20 years, who caused it? It was not NRM. It was Kony and other leaders who were saying that the government of Okello was “their government” as the Acholis. That is where it started. They came and told you that they are fighting for “your government” which the NRM had overthrown,” he expounded. “Of course, I was hearing all of that and we had to defeat that nonsense. Your young people must reject this nonsense! The reason why you find somebody like Museveni remaining relevant politically for the last 60 years, is because we take a line of Uganda and Africa, we don’t look at identity. The big problem of Uganda has been bad politics. When you hear anybody talking about tribes, then you know that he is dispensing fake medicine.”
The President also urged the leaders that they can look into other challenges like education, healthcare, the roads, among others, after dealing with the two core problems of poverty and bad politics. On the issue of titling of the land in the district, President Museveni said, “titling land in Amuru is a good idea.” President Museveni further pledged to support the councilors struggling with tuition fees and would like to finish their university education. “I will support you. That will be my appreciation to you.”
He also offered 2,000 iron sheets to rehabilitate schools in Amuru which are in poor condition. On his part, Mr. Lakony thanked President Museveni for his visionary leadership that has steered development in Amuru and Uganda at large. He informed the President that the people of Amuru are happy and have embraced government development programs like the PDM.
“In the next financial year, if we get the Shs5.8 billion again we will be able to cater for more beneficiaries. It’s now upon us as leaders to go on ground and monitor individual enterprises in place so that they don’t go astray,” he said. Mr. Lakony requested President Museveni to set up demonstration farms for the 4-acre model initiative in order to champion commercial agriculture in Amuru and Acholi sub region as a whole. He also reported to the President that the district is being negatively affected by bad politics, a factor that has stunted development. Due to bad politics in the area, Mr. Lakony said some politicians have frustrated government projects like irrigation, with claims that the government wants to grab the communal land in the district.
“As the local government we don’t need that bad politics. We request you to find ways of restraining these negative sentiments that are barring development. We are moving around the communities telling them how they can use land for production,” he said. The District Chairperson also requested the President to come up with a favourable law regulating customary land in order to facilitate development in Acholi sub region. “This will also address the issue of legality and customs for the meantime while we reconcile on the issue of whose land,” Mr. Lakony said.