Dr Kizza Besigye, the national chairperson of the People’s Front for Transition-PFT, a loose opposition grouping opposed to President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni’s rule has said as the country enters the New Year 2022, the dusk to dawn curfew instituted in 2020 as a means to control the spread of the coronavirus must come to an end.
Speaking to reporters today at his office along Katonga road in Kampala, Besigye said there is no evidence that a curfew that runs from 7pm to 5:30am can in anyway limit the spread of Covid-19. Instead, the four-time former presidential candidate says the curfew is used to extort money from the public by the security forces deployed to enforce it.
With President Museveni’s promise of fully reopening of the economy next year, Besigye said the government should have plans of assisting people and institutions that have been adversely affected by the pandemic.
He said the crises in the health, education, security, and economic sectors among others are too big to be ignored.
“It’s increasingly clear that many private schools were left to collapse under the burden imposed by lockdowns and many teachers have abandoned the profession and the impact of this on the whole education system is clearly very staggering,” Besigye observed.
“This is amidst a highly diminished capacity of parents to afford the costs of their children’s education due to underlying poverty plus the impact of Covid-19 lockdowns yet most schools are escalating school dues.”
He added that government should not only reduce the taxes it levies on businesses such as VAT, corporation tax, income tax among others but should also influence the reduction of the interest rates and also provide cash handouts to the most vulnerable groups of society in order to spur economic recovery.
In the past, the government has largely ignored the advice from the opposition groups on what should be done to resuscitate the economy badly affected by Covid-19.
Asked why he thinks the government this time will listen to him, Beisgye said they[government] have no choice because what am saying reflects the general view of the public.
He added that if those who are running the affairs of the state now are incapable of doing the right thing, then they should give way for them to implement them.
On the recent by-election in Kayunga district which saw Andrew Muwonge, the NRM candidate declared the winner despite claims of cheating by the National Unity Platform candidate Harriet Nakwede, Besigye said this vindicates them that elections in themselves can’t cause change in Uganda. URN