Pushing landlords out of markets is one of Museveni’s famous pro-poor policies

By Ben Ssebuguzi

President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni this week ended the insatiable appetite of the rich who oppress and exploit the poor from the 21 public markets constructed by the government by pushing them out and returning the possession to the real owners, the vendors. 

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This is how the vice begins. When the government builds a public market, some greedy and shrewd business people use their financial muscle to rent a bunch of stalls and then hire them out to disadvantaged vendors at a profit, which exacerbates the cost of rent hence making business less competitive. 

The good news this week is that President Yoweri Museveni through his Minister for Local Government, Hon Raphael Magezi, has indefinitely ended the tenure of Landlords owning many stalls at the expense of needy vendors where some who choose to work from the streets due to exorbitant charges hence killing wealth and job creation. 

Mr Museveni issued a directive on government markets management during a meeting at State House Entebbe on November 16, 2022, which makes it one of President’s most famous pro-poor policies which will go down in history as a major breakthrough in the economic liberation of poor people.  

According to Magyezi, the vendors will pay revenue approved by their respective local councils, which will cover market utilities, enhance security and improve sanitation. 

The pro-poor policy is about assisting the poor by reducing income inequality while promoting economic inclusion which is manifested in this intervention.

Pro-poor policies can also be defined as those policies that aim to improve the Assets and capabilities of poor people. 

Similarly, in 1964, in his first State of the Union address, President of the US Lyndon B. Johnson asked the Congress to declare an “unconditional war on poverty” and to aim not only to relieve the symptoms of poverty, but to cure it and, above all, to prevent it.

This seems the same lane Gen Yoweri Museveni is taking to tackle poverty by empowering the disadvantaged. 

The President’s pro-poor interventions can also be manifested in his  Office of the National Chairman (ONC)managed by his Manager and PA Hajjat Hadijah Namyalo where thousands of youth and women groups mostly from the ghetto across the country have benefited from the self-empowerment tools. 

Through ONC, the President has sacrificed and bankrolled the disadvantaged Bazzukulu with wealth-creation tools across the country. Some of the items the beneficiaries get include sawing machines, welding machines, grinding machines, salon equipment, chicks and feeds, goats, seeds, and hoes among others. 

In the same way, the over 21 industrial skilling hubs spread across the country, skilling the Girl Child, Parish Development Model, Emyooga, and Operation Wealth Creation among others are some of the other projects all intended to uplift those homesteads which are still stuck in substance economy in nature into the money economy. The Four-acre model is also intended to lift the 39% who are poor into the market economy. 

In conclusion, we thank the Fountain of Honour for dedicating his resources around his jurisdiction to help the poor across the country courtesy of ONC. we pray that God will reward you handsomely because the Bible says that whoever oppresses a poor man insults his Maker, but he who is generous to the needy honors him.

Long live General Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, and Long live Hajjat Hadijah Namyalo, manager ONC  and PA to the President. 

The writer is the Head of Research Office of the National Chairman  

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