By Ambrose Gahene
The Alliance for National Transformation (ANT) former presidential candidate, Maj Gen (Rtd) Mugisha Muntu, on Thursday advised the government to go slow on the move to host 2,000 Afghan evacuees, saying it was a “senseless decision”.
Gen Muntu was addressing a press conference at ANT Head Office in Kampala on a wide range of social, security and political issues affecting Uganda. He said Uganda is already overwhelmed with many problems and does not need to add on more.
A total of 51 Afghan evacuees arrived in the country through Entebbe International Airport on Wednesday and more are expected.
Gen Muntu cited challenges such as refugees’ influx from the neighbouring states with limited resources to take care of them, the shutting down of 54 non-governmental organizations who support communities and the negative effects posed by Covid-19 to the economy.
“Afghans are an additional burden to other refugees in Uganda,” he said.
Regarding opening of schools, Gen Muntu said the government should put in place a timetable, to tell Ugandans when schools will open.
He said neighbouring countries have opened schools in phases and does not see any reason why Uganda should not do so.
“The assertion by the government that if schools are open now, pupils and students would infect their parents at home with Covid-19 derived from school is baseless because the parents can equally infect their children with Covid derived from the market places they visit,” he added.
On security threats engineered by machete wielding criminals in Masaka City, Gen Muntu said this is due to lack of security intelligence commitment.
He said the government should prioritise and equip security with the necessary financial and material support to crack down on criminality in the country.
He extended condolences to the family of the late Maj Gen Paul Lokech, saying Uganda had lost a patriotic and committed officer, whose exemplary military service should remain as a legacy to Ugandans.