Ugandans want the best but don’t like paying for it - Commentaries | NTV

Ugandans want the best but don’t like paying for it

By JOSEPH TUMWESIGYE, Digital Journalist

Friday November 22, 2019


I know we miss the days we would buy 5 pancakes for UShs. 100 but those good old days are gone. This capitalistic world we embraced is taking its toll and there is little we can do about it.

Each passing year, more and more Ugandans enlightened about the modern world are churned out by Universities nationwide. They understand how the world works better than most of their countrymen and Women. We know the kind of effort we need to put in, as a country, to better ourselves.

Pay time is when reality hits. Asking a Ugandan for the extra Shilling to make an idea work is a dance “with” dragons. The two biggest examples were the Mobile Money/OTT tax and the continued defiance of Makerere Students to have their tuition increased. Individuals make it their duty to take to the streets and face other the police who are a penny away from tattered clothes.

The same individuals will tag pull the government on the other end demanding that standards in institutions of learning be bettered while others demand road construction, health facility improvement and many other things we lack.

A lot of people sympathize with the15 UACE students of Iganga Top care and their parents after the school administration barred them from doing examinations because they did not pay up what they owed the school. However, this institution has to run and considering that it is a private institution, the money has to come from the individuals who it offers services to.

In my experience, such institutions usually take such drastic measures after losing out multiple times. The media was more focused on the situation with the students but did stop to ask why this year, the school had to employ an infinity gauntlet on students’ existence in the examination rooms.

Makerere University is the biggest paradox of them all. One moment students are demanding better standards for the Country’s best and biggest University, and Lecturers are refusing to do their work as they demand “better” pay. When the University steps up and proposes an increase in tuition after aeons of the country facing economic hardships and weakening of the Uganda Shilling, it is considered a bad policy that many claim is designed to squeeze “Omuntu Wa Wansi”.

Obviously, foregoing such a proposal would mean that the government would have to step up and take care of the costs to keep the University at a high standard. The same government will be dealing with insane salaries to Political leaders, infrastructural development, Doctors’ salaries, health improvement and carelessly giving out cash to youths to start projects that die out before they make one year. With all of this to consider, the government then increases the taxes creating new avenues like Digital platforms to collect the much-dreaded fee.

And yet again, we take to the streets to face Ochola’s boys and girls.

Now that I am encouraging, however harshly, my fellow Ugandans to consider financing our way to development, it is only fair that I address the major reason as to why those who have the means are reluctant to pay from their pocket. I am talking about CORRUPTION.

I have had conversations with people willing to pay such taxes and fees but are reluctant because somebody will eat from the fruit basket before the fruits are shared. It is the government’s responsibility to ensure the security of the nation’s funds. If you are asking for more money from a tattered citizenry, then the white-collar trickery has to end.