By Ben Ssebuguzi
Two Nations who trade with each other become reciprocally dependent: for if one has an interest in buying, the other has an interest in selling and thus their Union is founded on their mutual necessities “-Montesquieu. That can not be achieved if there is conflict between member States.
Probably that informs why President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni used his Diplomatic prowess and Peace finesse to summon an extraordinary IGAD meeting to deliberate on the bad situation between Ethiopia and Somalia, and the civil war in Sudan which is acting as an impediment to the progress of international trade among the eight-country trade block in Africa that includes Ethiopia, Sudan, South Sudan, Tanzania, Eritrea, Uganda, Kenya and Djibouti.
We, therefore, thank General Yoweri Kaguta Museveni for using his unique leadership skills to foresee the relevance of first convening the IGAD meeting for its strategic importance to Ugandans before proceeding with the greater NAM Summit and G77+China. President Yoweri Museveni is aware that peace is not the absence of conflict but the ability to handle conflict by peaceful means which promotes intra-trade and prosperity among Nations but also subverts humanitarian crises.
According to Research, conflicts drive 80% of the humanitarian needs and reduce GDP growth by two percentage points per Year. For example, during the height of war and instability in Uganda, Uganda’s GDP fell from $2.94b to $1.24b between 1977-80 respectively. This was a big setback.
Similarly, dozens of the world’s biggest companies have abandoned or scaled back their operations in Russia in response to the invasion of Ukraine. It is estimated by World Bank that by 2030, up to two-thirds of the world’s extremely poor will live in fragility, conflict and Violence.
As a global peace and Development Champion, President Yoweri Museveni knows that the best way to build the competitiveness of his country in the global arena is through spreading and exporting his Peaceful skills across the region to get a market for Uganda’s goods and services while at the same time building harmonious foreign relations. Nations with greater trading links and partnerships tend to have even more harmonious relationships because traders can supply from abroad the consumption of goods or factors of production that are expensive or inexistent domestically.
The Fountain of Honor doesn’t operate from a vacuum but is guided by NRM’s long-term strategy of developing Uganda under the 10-point program. No.9 in particular articulates the need to promote cooperation with other African countries in defending the Human and Democratic rights of our brothers in other parts of Africa which clearly explains our PAN-AFRICANISM.
South Sudan would not be our leading export partner if point number 9 was not emphasized and therefore our GDP would not Leap to $50b compared to $1.24b in 1980 if there were no deliberate strategies. I think this explains the tedious job of being a President of Uganda. A Ugandan leader must know and God’s wisdom to navigate through this global world of competition. A docile leader with an inferiority complex can’t create jobs for Ugandans. It takes too much work to attract Foreign Direct Investments if you don’t have global respect and resilience like President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni.
In conclusion, there are tremendous benefits to pursuing global peace. Chapter VII of the UN Charter works to prevent conflicts, helping parties in conflict make peace, among others which are the same ideals of the NRM. It is my prayer that IGAD resolutions in Kampala are implemented to create enabling peace for our coexistence as Africans through trade and create more jobs for our youthful population(BAZUKKULU).
Long live General Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, Long live Hajjat Hadijah Uzeiye Namyalo SPA/PA and Manager ONC.
Ben Ssebuguzi is the Head of Research at the Office of the National Chairman
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