Create four federal states in Uganda

Thursday, 16th November, 2006

I am happy that the people of Acholi have come out to demand the creation of four federal states in Uganda (Daily Monitor, September 30).

This is what the Baganda have all along been demanding. Therefore this is the time for all Ugandans to come out boldly and request President Yoweri Museveni to convene a national conference in March 2007 to discuss and approve the creation of the four federal states. The Acholi are the dominant tribe in northern Uganda.

Both Baganda and Acholi have been instrumental in the politics of Uganda since before independence. Before independence the Acholi had the biggest number of educated people in the north.

They had the biggest number of people in the army, police and prisons. Even the Kabaka’s police at Mengo had a big number of Acholi before 1966. Therefore this group cannot be wished away easily.

I call upon MPs, political party leaders, religious leaders, elders, farmers, traders, women leaders and university communities to approach the President and request him to grant the four federal states.

The federal states should be names as follows: lBuganda, to be under the Kabaka and the Buganda Lukiiko lRwenzori, comprising Bunyoro, Toro, Ankole and Kigezi. lMasaba, comprising Busoga, Bukedi, Teso, Bugisu, Sebei and Karamoja.

Nile, comprising Lango, Acholi and West Nile. The tribal kings in those states will retain their status and traditions. I have suggested geographical names (except in the case of Buganda) because they are neutral and I believe they will be acceptable to the people concerned.

The collection of taxes will by both the state governments and the federal government and shared equally (where possible) between the two entities. An acceptable system of tax collection can be worked out.

The creation of federal states is in line with the “back to the land policy” which we must adopt now in Uganda. Through this policy people will be encouraged, assisted and persuaded to go back to their rural areas and develop those areas.

Some Baganda elders plan to meet the Katikkiro of Buganda and introduce this plan to him. This plan will be the driving force in Buganda to eradicate poverty. This new system will, above all, make the young Baganda know and understand the value of their land. The system of selling land will be reviewed so that the people will be assisted to use t heir land profitably instead of selling.

The “back to land policy” in the case of B uganda will bet to take the young Baganda back to the land for farming on a small scale and large scale.

The Kabaka’s government will be encouraged to establish “Buganda State Farms” and thousands of young Baganda will work and manage those farms.

We have had the unitary system for the last 41 years which Milton Obote introduced in 1966.

Ugandans know that we have spent almost all these years in tribal conflicts. Under the unitary system we had the small tribe ruling a big tribe and in the process the small tribe did everything possible to undermine the big tribe.

The unitary system has completely failed to develop Uganda economically. Under the federal system, the tribes in the west, north, east and Buganda will rule themselves. Parliament will be the unifying factor.

Finally I would like to assure the people of Uganda that the federal system of government is the best for Uganda. I call upon Joseph Kony and his LRA and the people of Acholi to end the war so that we embark on the task of developing our country.

The state governments will be able to acquire loans for economic development from both local banks and foreign sources.
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