President Yoweri Museveni who is also the National Chairman of the National Resistance Movement on Saturday opened the five day retreat of the Central Executive Committee of the National Resistance Movement, highlighting governments’ major achievements in infrastructure development and service delivery and emphasizing that the weakest point now is economic empowerment of the 68% of the population who rely on subsistence agriculture mainly in the rural areas.
The ongoing retreat is taking place at Chobe Safari Lodge in Nwoya District.
He advised the party’s top organ that the retreats’ number one pre-occupation should be finding a solution to the 68% of the population that are not in money economy and are stuck in absolute poverty.
“These 68% population is our weakest point that we need to discuss, the rest is easy. Let us agree and talk the same language and act together,” he said.
The CEC retreat is being held under the theme “Building on solid achievements, consolidating the unity of the NRM and the transformation of the Wanainchi towards achieving vision 2040”
President Museveni told the meeting that he woke up at 4am to read a paper on national economy by Ezra Suruma that will be discussed by members to come up with solutions.
“I woke up at 4am and was busy reading papers. I went through that of the economy by Dr. Ezra Suruma. This method of meeting is good and serious. We have to discuss this issue and exhaust it,” he said.
The President briefed members on their choice of Chobe Safari Lodge as a venue for the third session of CEC saying as a result of the NRMs privatization policy, Uganda’s tourism potential was revived with lodges such as Chobe, Para and Mweya which had been vandalized and collapsed rehabilitated and are some of the best.
He told CEC that the meeting was postponed because Chobe was fully booked by Valentines day merry makers and was unavailable.
Chairman Museveni said that there was need to advise and bring to the understanding of the political class in the country the importance of prioritization in the development and implementation of national programs.
“I want to advise the political class to understand the practice of prioritization and budgeting. You travelled on a good road from Kampala to here. And from here to the three directions to the boarders, it is tarmac all the way. This is because of our policy of prioritization. We built Karuma using money from the energy fund that we had saved. We must tighten prioritization and limit consumption. We need money for infrastructure and for the wealth fund,” he said.
He said that political leaders need to understand that it is not possible for all national programs to be implemented at the same time as resources are always limited and thus the need to prioritize development programs.
“We have managed to have a good road network with border to border tarmacked roads and develop a number of power dams because we prioritized these crucial sectors and saved for them through the road and energy funds. We need to continue doing the same and limit on administrative expenditure like travels by government official and save for programs of national importance,” he said.
The party Secretary General Justine Kasule Lumumba said the retreat is grounded on ideological re-orientation and re-direction.
“The socio-economic dynamics of Uganda require that a progressive organization reflects on how it is run and as leaders should run it.
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