Ugandan president Yoweri Museveni on Thursday, August 17 maintained that loans and foreign aid from developed countries add no value to African countries.
In a press statement, Museveni explained that many of the loans and aid packages, are either of no value addition to Uganda or are even antigrowth, all together.
“I would like to reiterate that foreign aid and loans are welcome and can be of some use if designed and executed by patriots (not neo-colonial agents) but are neither decisive nor indispensable elements for our desired social-economic transformation,” read part of Museveni’s statement.
The Ugandan head of state also noted that on the contrary, those loans and aid packages can be a source of distortion and stunted growth as witnessed in most African countries.
“If foreign aid and loans are a source of social-economic transformation, why the present growing crisis of even security and stability in Africa?” Museveni wondered.
He gave an example of what happened in Uganda’s Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries, where a total of USD 800 million had been borrowed over a period of ten years, but much of the money was spent on seminars.
“The Ministry did not have zonal diagnostic labs and Research centres, did not repair the 2 mechanization centres, and did not buy the mechanization equipment like combine harvesters or even tractors, no irrigation equipment for farmers, no value addition equipment,” he narrated in a statement.
Museveni emphasized that most of the borrowing has been having no value addition to Uganda’s transformation journey, adding that in some cases, the aid policies were directly against growth.
He at the same time noted that Uganda has been manufacturing ARVs and other medical drugs at the local Quality Chemicals factory in Kampala – Luzira.
“The Aid givers from abroad, for a long time, were not allowing us to use their money to buy the Ugandan manufactured drugs,” he noted.
“To qualify for aid, we had to forget our own industrialization and jobs creation for our People and support, with our getting treatment, the jobs creation for other people,” he added.
He alleged that it is the neocolonial lobby that was behind the signing of such distortion-causing agreements in the Country without his approval.
The Ugandan president explained that was why, on the 19th of June, 2017, he wrote a directive forbidding the contracting of more loans without his express approval.