Ugandans have expressed mixed reactions over the State of the Nation Address delivered by President Museveni on Thursday.
Speaking to the Nile Post, the Prime Minister, Dr.Ruhakana Rugunda praised the address which he said touched a number of pertinent issues in the country.
“It has been a comprehensive statement by Museveni. He has raised many issues of concern to ordinary people of Uganda and their well-being,”Rugunda said.
“He emphasized Ugandans’ security, economic well- being, major projects underway. It is going to be food for thought during parliamentary debate on his address.”
The NRM Secretary General, Justine Kasule Lumumba equally praised Museveni’s address as being a balanced statement.
“He has given a balanced statement by talking about different sectors where government has done well and where it has not fared well. He has also been able to tell us the gaps in service delivery and how to close them,” Lumumba said.
However, Members of Parliament from the opposition poked holes into Museveni’s address saying it was not realistic.
Buhweju County MP, Francis Mwijukye said the figures as quoted by Museveni were concocted and didn’t reflect what is on the ground.
“The ratio of teachers to pupils is not true in government schools. We have many schools where a teacher is handling more than 100 pupils. In some schools in Busoga, teachers conduct lessons under trees,”Mwijukye said.
“There is a missing link between him and the ministries or people in ministries are just sitting in offices and concocting figures to give to him. The figures don’t depict what is on the ground.”
Kasese Woman MP and former Leader of Opposition, Winnie Kiiza described the address as a “usual casual talk.”
“It was the usual casual talk where he came to accuse others .If he thinks we are a problem to him he needs to state how we are a problem,”Kiiza said.
It was the same feeling on social media with mixed reactions from members of the public who commented on Museveni’s State of the Nation Address.
” It was among the best State of the Nation Address in your 33 years rule. Good progress in road infrastructure and Energy sector. However, more efforts is needed in Agriculture, IT and human rights,”said one Paul Ssimoh on facebook.
“Still you talked of boosting agriculture but how will it be when subsidies like NAADs offerings are poorly allocated in addition to sidelining out-growers like the Basoga from their sugarcane growing,”wondered Ssalongo Juma on facebook.
“You should start always straight away to points people expect from you but not to bring always long ago stories which we the youth don’t understand,” said one Godfrey Kisaliita on twitter.
In his State of the Nation Address, President Museveni said some of the key priorities for government include a crackdown on the crime wave, boosting agriculture mechanization, working on the oil pipeline and refinery, fast tracking of the Standard Gauge Railway and priotisation of investment in industrial parks among other issues.
However, Museveni skipped the issue of the border row between Uganda and Rwanda that many thought he would address.