By Our Special Correspondent
Uganda will no-longer import fully built buses in a bold move to bolster the country’s nascent automotive industry , President Yoweri Museveni has announced.
While launching the 3-day National Resistance Movement (NRM) National Executive Committee (NEC) and delegates – virtual conference at State House in Entebbe, where he was endorsed as the party’s sole flag bearer for the 2021 presidential elections, Museveni empathized the need for value addition across all productive sectors to ensure jobs and wealth creation.
Uganda’s nascent automotive industry now being championed by government owned Kiira Motors Corporation- got a major endorsement when President Museveni said Uganda now has both the natural resources and technical capabilities to produce buses locally.
“We are now beginning to harvest from the knowledge–based economy. This is where our scientists, use their knowledge to make products: vehicles, agro-products, medicines, vaccines, computer solutions.
We are stopping, for instance, the importation of ready-made buses and we no- longer accept the concept of assembling buses and other vehicles here. Our scientists and some of the investors have capacity to fabricate these products locally, the President stated.
In the same way, he observed , Ugandan scientists have the capacity to make other products ─ medicines, vaccines. “ This is a new form of wealth for Uganda ─ the wealth from knowledge. It is no longer just the wealth of coffee, cattle, cotton etc. Fortunately, Uganda has everything: the wealth based on natural resources and the wealth based on the human resource,” Museveni added.
KMC the path finder
Kiira Motors has received world -wide acclaim for its home-grown green mobility technologies that have seen the company produce fully electric market validation buses -the Kayoola EVS. The electric buses -the first of the kind in Uganda and East African Region have been deployed to offer shuttle services for the staff of Uganda Civil Aviation Authority (UCAA).
And as Kiira Motors enters the lucrative auto-mobiles global market , the company has emerged – the undisputed path-finder for electric vehicles in Uganda, EAC and African continent -offering green mobility solutions for public transport in cities and urban centers.
On that note, Museveni said government will address and sort out the issue of high electricity tarrifs that are affecting industrialists and innovators . Other issues he said government will tackle include, stealing of drugs in the health centres, the school charges (school fees), for the poor families and the land evictions by the greedy land – grabbers, acting illegally, moreover.
“We have got a computer solution for the stealing of drugs that will trace the drugs from the factory, through the National Medical Stores (NMS), to the health centre up to the patient.
During the zonal meetings, I left the issue of the school charges to you and the Village Assemblies,” he said.
On the issue of land evictions, Museveni said that Justice Bamugemereire had done good documentation of the distortions created by colonialism and its agents in the issue of land ownership in Uganda. “ The Cabinet will study this report and produce a White Paper (Government response to the recommendations of a Commission of Inquiry ).” In an angry tone Museveni warned against violence in the lead up to the general elections saying that such acts of hooliganism shall not be tolerated .
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