Africa needs trade not Aid, says President Museveni

Tuesday 1st July 2014

President Yoweri Museveni has said that Africa and Uganda in particular does not need Aid support but trade with developed partners.

He said Uganda is a rich country with all the resources that can be exploited to transform her economic development adding, that the crucial requirement is markets to further enhance trade relations between Africa and the rest of the world.

"Uganda does not need Aid. Uganda is so rich and we have always donated aid in form of exporting agricultural products without adding value. The only thing we need from the world is trade if they can buy our products. Aid becomes important when people are asleep,” he said.

The President was addressing the opening session of the 2-day African Faith Leaders' Summit on the Post 2015 Development Agenda today at Speke Resort, Munyonyo in Kampala.

The Summit running under the theme "Enhancing Faith Communities Engagement on the Post 2015 Development Agenda" has attracted religious leaders from the African continent.

He said he was not bothered by the Aid cuts by the donor community adding, that aid cut is a good thing because it will awake up Ugandans in particular and Africans in general.

“The aid cuts will also arouse us to seriously undertake hard work and appreciate more the necessity of earning income through our local effort.”

The President observed that if all Ugandans woke up and got engaged in commercial agriculture, their Uganda would create more wealth that would eventually make “us lenders to other countries”.

He assured the people of Uganda that the economy is growing despite the aid cut.

He also observed that Africans face natural problems of drought, floods, among others, in Equatorial regions of the continent because of improper planning and lack of knowledge and science that could be used to control the dangers and ravages caused by nature.

He said Equatorial Africa does not have drought but lacks the knowledge and understanding of the science to turn huge amounts of rain water to its advantage by storing that water for use in irrigation.

Regarding conflicts in Africa, the President said many of them are fuelled by failure to observe Jesus' commandment of "love your neighbour as yourself" noting, that the religious wars between Catholics, Protestants and Moslems were a result of lack of love.

He commended the concept of the Inter-religious Council saying, it is good.

He pledged support to the Council and called on religious leaders to guide the masses well by teaching them to practice what God wants of the human being.

The Chairperson of the Inter-Religious Council of Uganda, Metropolitan of Kampala and all Uganda, His Eminence Jonah Lwanga of the Orthodox Church, urged his fellow religious leaders to find urgent ways of dealing with violence in some of the affected countries of Africa.

He said Africa should unite and pool resources to support each other for development.

Archbishop Jonah Lwanga said religious leaders will support any plans by the governments of Africa and other movements to stamp out corruption and the promotion of human rights to ensure that development in Africa is not hindered.

He said religious leaders had challenges of mobilizing resources from their partners following the enactment of the homosexual law by Parliament.

He, however, reiterated the tenets of the African traditions that do not support homosexuality.

He thanked the government of Uganda for the Shs 183 million support to the Summit.

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