Manifesto Implementation Unit (MIU) Director Willis Bashaasha has challenged manifesto stakeholders from the central region to always embrace unity and constant search for knowledge if they are to effectively communicate government projects.
Bashaasha made the call while addressing core local government leaders from Buganda region who are at the National Leadership Institute (NALI) in Kyankwanzi for a 5-day manifesto monitoring and validation retreat.
The leaders include both political and technical top leaders from the 27 local government units including districts and municipalities of the central region. The leaders include Chief Administrative Officers (CAO), LC5 district chairpersons, NRM party district chairpersons, Municipality mayors and Resident District Commissioners. These were joined by presidential advisors from the central region as well as officers from key manifesto implementation agencies like OWC, among others.
The officials are in Kyankwanzi to assess and validate the progress of the NRM 2021-26 manifesto so far, highlighting the programmes already implemented, examining the challenges faced and reflecting on the possible solutions to the emerging challenges and impediments to effective manifesto implementation.
During deliberations on Day 3 (Tuesday) of the retreat, however, participants agreed that more was still needed to make the citizens appreciate that the government has indeed done much in fulfilling the social contract with the people, despite some challenges and gaps still lingering.
It is upon this realization that MIU Director Willis Bashaasha tasked the manifesto stakeholders to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of their communication of manifesto accomplishments to the masses.
Bashaasha however challenged these leaders to read widely and get acquainted with the manifesto and its supporting policy documents such as the National Development Plan (NDP) III and the 23 strategic service delivery guidelines of the president, among others, so as to be able to explain the manifesto in a coherent and articulate manner.
“The reason we brought you as a group of your respective districts is to help you appreciate the value of teamwork in this great work of manifesto implementation. As you can see, this is a multi-sectoral effort which requires synergizing so as to achieve the desired objectives. So, we call upon you to work as a team when you go back to your respective work stations,” Bashaasha said. He explained that teamwork will cure petty fights and blame games born by greed and empty ego, which has seen some people personalize government programmes yet they were clearly stipulated in the manifesto.
“You have seen people coming up and promising to build roads, schools, health centres and other social amenities for people as if they have the money to fund them. But all that comes up because leaders do not know what is in the manifesto they are supposed to help implement. As leaders, therefore, I challenge you to extensively read the manifesto and other policy documents like the NDP III because it is from it that the manifesto is anchored. That way, we shall be able to counter all negative forces if we know what has been accomplished as was promised and also stand up to those people who cunningly own up manifesto commitments as if they are personal projects,” Bashaasha said. He further challenged members to take special interest in the Parish Development Model (PDM), which is the multipurpose vehicle for socioeconomic transformation in this term.
Central Region Crucial — Minister Babalanda
In her message read by Kampala Capital City and Metropolitan Affairs minister Hajjati Minsa Kabanda, Hon. Milly Babirye Babalanda, the Minister for the Presidency reiterated the need for manifesto stakeholders to be highly informed about government programmes.
“I urge you leaders to acquaint yourselves with full knowledge of government programmes like the PDM because that is the only way you will be able to explain them,” she said.
She also appealed to the RDCs to intensify use of the airtime which the government secured on radios and TVs across the country to exclusively communicate progress of manifesto commitments.
In specific terms, the minister challenged the leaders from the central region to work even harder since the area is the pivot of socioeconomic transformation of the entire country.
“The central region alone has about 13 million people, which is about a quarter of the total national population. However, it is the centre of production as it is the hub of agriculture,
industrialization and other commercial activities. This shows that once this region is crippled then the entire country is likely to be crippled as well. That is why you should unite and extend services to our people without any divisions or blame games,” she said.
The minister also reminded the manifesto stakeholders to always remember that in whichever capacity they are, they should work towards the collective goal of securing the future of all Ugandans through socioeconomic transformation as envisioned by the manifesto and NDP III.